The world’s top runners are set to meet in Turkey as they prepare to compete in a scenic yet challenging marathon that will take place in the country’s famed Cappadocia region on Oct. 16-17.
The Salomon Cappadocia Ultra-Trail will be held over the weekend in central Turkey’s Nevşehir province, where athletes will have a chance to run through one of the most scenic marathon routes in the world.
Featuring three different races – ultra (119 kilometers), medium (63 km), and short trail (38 km) – the event will also host flag races called “Cappadocia Team Games” in this year’s edition.
Taking place along the unique fairy chimneys and valleys of the Cappadocia region, a UNESCO world heritage site, more than 2,000 athletes from around the world are set to compete in the event.
French athlete Mathieu Blanchard, who finished third at the Ultra-Trail du Mont-Blanc (UMTB) will be the headliner. Switzerland’s Diego Pazos, Belgium’s Manuella Soccol and Fedrik Vancraeynest will be joining Blanchard in the event.
Turkey will be represented by Meryem Kılınç Gündoğdu, Mehmet Soytürk and Kemal Kukul, the only Turkish athlete to step onto the podium at the UMTB.
Having organized the race since 2014, the company behind the event said around 5,000 people, including guests and athletes, are expected to arrive in Cappadocia for this year’s race.
“We are expecting a good race. Our preparations are completed. We are only worried about the weather conditions but so far, it looks like it will be alright,” organizer Aydın Ayhan Güney told Anadolu Agency (AA).
“We are expecting a solid competition, it will be fun.”