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European Athletics Off-Road Running Championships 2022

On 1-3rd of July the town of El Paso, on the Spanish island of La Palma, will host the first ever European Athletics Off-Road Running Championships.

The pine forests and rocky trails on the flanks of Pico Bejenado to the north of El Paso will be the scene of 3 days of thrilling racing as the two disciplines of Mountain Running and Trail Running are combined into a single continental championship for the first time. By Sunday afternoon European champions will have been crowned in 10 events; Senior and U20 women and men in Uphill and Up and Down Mountain Running, and Senior women and men in the Trail Race.

IMG 0287SMLFollowing the opening ceremony on Thursday 30th of June, there is a prelude to the weekend's racing with Subida a las Estrellas, Ascent to the Stars, a mass participation uphill night race of 3.1k and 607m+. Then on Friday the championship racing gets underway with the Elite Uphill races; 6.5k and 765m+ for the Under 20s, 9km and 1011m+ for the Seniors.

Saturday brings the Trail Race, 47.7k and 2,562m+, taking in some of the same trails as the mountain races at the beginning and end, with a long loop out to the spectacular ridge that makes up El Paso's eastern skyline.

There is a mass participation race on the same course, as well as a shorter 31.7km option. Saturday also sees the mass participation race on the Up and Down mountain course.

The championship concludes on the Sunday with the Elite U20 and Senior Up and Down mountain races, 5.4km, 309m+ and 18k, 865m+ respectively.

Having hosted the Spanish Mountain Running Championships in tremendously difficult circumstances in 2020, the town of El Paso and RFEA are sure to produce another incredible weekend.

Technical delegate for the event and WMRA Council member Sarah Rowell said ‘I am heading over to La Palma again next week to carry out the final course check, but having visited last year and worked closely with the LOC, I am really excited about what will be the first combined mountain and trail international event – the courses are tough, fair and respect the traditions of mountain and trail running. We have a superb location and a great organising committee behind the event, who have worked really hard to ensure the Championships can successfully go ahead despite both Covid and the volcano eruption of last year.’

A detailed timetable and course maps and profiles can be found on the European Athletics website.