The wait is almost over. The world’s toughest adventure race returns in just a matter of days for the Prologue in Wagrain-Kleinarl followed by the main start in historic Salzburg.
From New Zealand to the U.S. to Japan, athletes are beginning to converge in the Alps, ready for the world’s toughest – and greatest – adventure race to begin. The Red Bull X-Alps is just days away from kicking-off, and athletes and fans alike cannot wait for the start gun to fire.
This will be an historic Red Bull X-Alps. Not only is it the 10th edition of the iconic race, which has run every two years since 2003. It is also the first time a revolutionary new route – the longest ever – has been unveiled which requires athletes to complete a circular tour of the Alps.
It is also special for being able to take place at a time when so many other sporting events and fixtures have been cancelled or postponed. Thanks to Live Tracking, the race is ideally set-up to follow remotely. The updated GPS tracking system allows fans from all over the world to join athletes on the ground and in the air as they hike and fly across the Alps over 12 days.
The showdown begins in the picturesque mountain resort of Wagrain-Kleinarl, Austria, which for the second year, hosts the Prologue, a 30km one-day battle which sees athletes hike and fly around three Turnpoints, the peaks of Mooskopf, Grafenberg and Hochgründeck.
The prize for the first three athletes is an additional Night Pass which allows them to hike through the night during the main race while the rest of the field is forced to stay where they are. It’s a valuable strategic tool to have in the back pocket. The results also impact the starting order of day two, which has a staggered start, with athletes setting off according to the time they finished behind the Prologue winner.
Two days later, on Saturday June 19th, at 10.30am there is a press conference in Salzburg’s Hangar-7, in which athletes will talk through their goals and ambitions. It will also be broadcast live on redbullxalps.com. Among those present will be the six-time champion Chrigel ‘the Eagle’ Maurer, looking to cement his name in sporting history with a seventh successive win.
This year there is no shortage of candidates who could dethrone the Swiss champion. They include Maxime Pinot (FRA1) who came 2nd in 2019 but who beat him in a recent hike and fly race in France, Benoît Outters, who came 2nd in 2017, and many in his own Swiss team who have learnt from the master and are now ready to challenge him for the throne.
“This year is like no other,” said race co-founder UIrich Grill. “We have an inspiring new route, it’s the 10th edition and it promises to be one of the most exciting races to date. Fans have been longing to watch this highly competitive adventure race across the Alps. Now is the time to sit back, set your browser to Live Tracking and let the adventure begin. I wish all athletes the best of luck and a safe race.”
Get ready for the showdown. Follow all the action via Live Tracking on redbullxalps.com.
About Red Bull X-Alps
Red Bull X-Alps 2021 is the world’s toughest adventure race. It’s a hike and fly battle across 1,238km of alpine terrain in which competitors run, hike up mountains and fly by paraglider. The tenth edition of the race starts in Salzburg, Austria, on June 20, 2021, with 30 elite athletes from 15 countries lining up to take on the challenge. The field consists of 18 veterans, 11 rookies and the six-time champion Christian Maurer, looking for a seventh consecutive victory.
This year’s route is the longest and most challenging in the race’s history, and a radical break from the past. Instead of finishing in the Mediterranean Sea; athletes travel an out-and-back route across the Alps from Salzburg to Mont Blanc to Zell am See, Austria, via 12 Turnpoints in five countries.
The action kicks off on June 17 with the prologue, a one-day hike and fly battle in Wagrain-Kleinarl, Austria. The top three finishers earn an additional Night Pass, allowing them to hike through the mandatory overnight rest period during the main race.
The Red Bull X-Alps is a grueling test of body and mind, and the 2021 edition promises to be full of drama, adventure, and high-alpine action. Athletes can be followed every step of the way via state-of-the-art Live Tracking.
Prologue in Wagrain – Kleinarl, Austria: June 17, 2021
Press Conference at Hangar-7, Salzburg, Austria: June 19, 2021
Race Start in Salzburg, Austria: June 20, 2021