Launching the World Mountain Running Ranking
Today we proudly launch the World Mountain Running Ranking, designed for Mountain Runners, by Mountain Runners. Since 1984, the WMRA has been a pioneering institution, key to the global development of Mountain Running. Starting with its first major international competition in 1985, it has gone on to hold 37 World Championships plus 22 World Cups. This year another World Cup is about to start, together with the World Mountain & Trail Running Championships which will be held in November in Thailand.
As the sport keeps on growing globally, we are launching the WMRA ranking in order to help share the best races and give runners from all over the world a clear, objective and easy to understand tool.
Created for Mountain Runners, by Mountain Runners, this ranking is based on four principles:
- A race directory for top mountain races all over the world. All the WMRA calendar races are there, but there are many more. Other top mountain races are recognized and included, to increase awareness of them among athletes and bring them to a wider audience.
- A rolling 365 day ranking. With mountain running, you are only as good as your current form, whether you're the world champion or a back of the pack runner.
- A transparent, easy to understand scoring system. No hidden algorithms, no secret formulas. Simplicity is an inherent part of the joy of mountain running, and we have tried to maintain that. Therefore clear calculations can be made by any race director, sponsor, national team manager or runner about performance.
- A work in progress. The sport is very dynamic and constantly evolving. We acknowledge this and will strive to learn from feedback in order to keep developing the resource, for the benefit of all.
The ranking has gained great support from all stakeholders in Mountain Running. Initial reactions from mountain runners all over the world have been very enthusiastic, confirming the need for this ranking, together with the WMRA's interest in listening to comments/suggestions on working together for a better future.
SARAH MCCORMACK. (UK- Gold World Cup WMRA 2019)
“This is a great resource for the mountain running community to keep up-to-date with events and top performances worldwide. I think it will also bring greater awareness about the variety of different mountain races taking place around the globe. Personally I'll definitely be perusing it to get ideas for new races to try in future!”
ANDREW DOUGLAS (UK – Gold World Cup WMRA 2019)
“I think it’s a really positive initiative for mountain running and gives some context to who the in-form athletes are, leading up to the championship events. Once travel begins to open up again and we can have international races with international fields then I think something like this really gives athletes extra impetus to climb up the rankings and compare themselves to the best mountain runners in the world.”
JACOB ADKIN (UK- Gold European Championship Zermatt 19)
“It’s a useful resource for finding out about the many races out there to enjoy, to remember what races you’ve actually done(!), and see your progression and comparison against yourself and others year on year.”
RODRIGO MEJIA (MEX – Five times winner Sierre Zinal)
“I am glad that nowadays there is Brand new worldwide ranking of mountain runners endorsed by the WMRA. We may now know, via an objective tool, to be improved gradually for sure, who are the best. And that will allow for them to be recognized for their performances in serveral different races all over the world. Congrats to all involved in such a Project and Good luck on the steep trails ahead.”
ANTONIO MARTINEZ (ESP- Gold Medal Team World Championship Patagonia 19 - Sheila Aviles pictured)
"A step forward for the mountain running comunity. I feel like the sport is growing and this is an example of it, together with the inaugural World Mountain & Trail Running Championship at Thailand 2021, plus the addition of more distances to the events. I’m really excited to see this new calendar and ranking format working out soon."
RICHARD BOLT (USA Team Leader- Medal Leader World Championship Patagonia 19 - World Champions Grayson Murphy and Joseph Gray pictured)
"The WMRA World Ranking is a great program for helping promote the many dedicated athletes and races that make up the global mountain running community. As we get back to racing in the coming months, we look forward to seeing the ranking evolve and to how it motivates competitors in the lead up to the inaugural World Mountain and Trail Running Championships in Thailand.
JUAN CARLOS GRANADO (ESP Team Leader. 3 Medals World Championships Patagonia 19)
“We are witnessing an important moment in this exciting world of Mountain Running. The creation of a serious world ranking according to the world calendar only brings this specialty closer to a sport with more entity and with greater references. Having the option of comparing runners in the most objective way possible offers another scene much closer to World Athletics traditions, where rankings have a unique importance. Hopefully over time it will become an essential tool as it is in Track & field.”
ANNE BUCKLEY (Team Leader, GB&NI Mountain Running Team)"The WMRA World Rankings is a great initiative that will help to raise the profile of mountain running. The race directory is a fantastic resource for athletes and the ranking list will provide motivation and publicity."
JONATHAN WYATT. (Six times WMRA World Champion) President WMRA
“The Mountain Running World Ranking powered by the WMRA is a project started three years ago. It is with a great satisfaction that we now present a ranking that reflects the specific features of mountain running. With it we recognise the top athletes, plus rank all runners who participate in mountain races. A simple and transparent points system makes it easy to understand, as the ranking is calculated on a rolling 365 day basis. Thanks to all the work from our Council and developers. this project is only just beginning and we’re excited for the future of it.”
FRANCESCO PUPPI (ITA- Silver Long Distance World Championship Patagonia 19) Ranking Secretary
“ It is with great pleasure that I announce my collaboration with the World Mountain Running Association as the Ranking Secretary. This is a way for me to promote and develop the sport not just as an athlete, but also from the side of federations and management.
I think that having an athlete sharing feedback and bringing knowledge inside a federation is a great way to give voice to all athletes' needs: something that the WMRA is already doing with its Athletes Commission.
The project, as I see it, is a work in progress and I will appreciate any feedback and constructive criticism that will help its implementation and development. It's finally time to give athletes a more powerful voice inside the sport and this project is one way to do it, which I am happy to contribute to.”
View the World Mountain Running Ranking website here: WMRA – World Ranking
Photos credit Corsa in Montagna and Mayayo