Skyline Scotland 2023 - Race Preview

Races, athletes and nutrition - we look ahead to Skyline Scotland.

Beau Smith
By Beau Smith

06/09/23

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With exceptional organisation, five fantastic trail events ranging from 5km to 80km, and three epic skyrunning events, Skyline Scotland is up there as one of the UK's best running events. Based at the Ice Climbing centre in the village of Kinlochleven, its a bit of a journey for most to get there but well worth the effort! In addition, 2023 will be the final edition in the current location before a year off from the event and an exciting new location in 2025 which will allow the continued growth of the event.


Skyline Scotland held the UK's first Sky Running event in 2015 and the event has previously hosted the World Sky Running Championships in 2018. In 2023 the event and see over 2000 athletes, representing 32 different nations, set to compete across the eight events.

 

Runner descending during Sky Running event Skyline Scotland 2022

 


Race Director Shane Ohly commented “This year’s Salomon Skyline Scotland® will once again bring together the UK mountain and trail community in Scotland for one of the biggest festival weekends of the year. With this edition being the last in Kinlochleven before the vent relocates, it promises to be a very special event with high drama and emotion as runners get the final opportunity to race some of the most iconic race routes of the last decade”


VOOM Nutrition Director Robin Higgen’s said “We’re excited to head back to Kinlochleven. As a young brand Skyline Scotland was actually one of the first events VOOM ever attended, way back in 2019. It’s great to see how we’ve both grown since then and the Skyline Trails team are always immensely professional. It always comes through just how much athletes look forward to attending and we can’t wait to see everyone there!”

 

 

Trail Races at Skyline Scotland

 

The comprehensive range of trail events include the Grey Mare's Trail 5km, the Loch Eilde Mor Trail 10km and the hugely popular 18km Three Mealls Trail Race. For those up for a bigger challenge there's the Mamores Stalker Trail Race, a testing 27km with 1,100m of vertical elevation, and the Lochaber 80 Trail Ultra for the biggest test on Skyline Scotland's Trail program taking runners into remote wilderness of the Scottish Highlands.

 

Trail Runners near Kinlochleven during Skyline Scotland's trail running events in 2022

 

 

Skyrunning Races at Skyline Scotland

 

Similarly to the 5 different trail races, all three sky running races start and finish in Kinlochleven where there is always an unforgettable buzz and atmosphere of support for the runners.

 

Race winner crossing the finish line at Skyrunning event in Scotland

 

 

The Salomon Ben Nevis Ultra at 52km with around 4000 metres of elevation, is a true all round test for any ultra runner. With a variety of terrain from deep glens to stunning, rocky ridgelines and obviously Scotland's highest peak, Ben Nevis.

 

The Salomon Glencoe Skyline, also 53km in length but with 4750 metres is a sky running event in its purest form. Participants tackle long sections of high and exposed ridgelines requiring plenty of scrambling. The course record of 6:25:39, run by Kilian Jornet in 2017, shows the caliber of this race.

 

 

A male skyrunner scrambles up steep rock int he Scottish Highlands during Skyline Scotland 2022

 

 

The Salomon Ring of Steall Skyrace is an impressive 29km with 2,500m of vert forming a variation of the popular ring of Steal ridge walking route. The course takes on the epic Devil's ridge between Sgorr an lubhair (CP1) and Sgurr a’ Mhaim (CP2) in a clockwise loop as well as other exposed areas requiring basica scrambling. This year the event forms the final round of the UK/NL Golden Trail Series so the competition is sure to be hot - the top 3 male and female in the rankings will be invited to compete in the Golden Trail Series World Final in Italy on 19th October.



VOOM at Skyline Scotland 2023

 

Plenty of VOOM customers are heading to Kinlochleven again this year, and the ambassador team are represented too! Ellis Bland, record holder at The Lap Windermere and podium finisher at The Arc of Attrition back in January, will be a popular speaker on Skyline Scotland's panel of talks. Ellis will take on the Glencoe Skyline and after a recent weekend away in the Glen Coe area he's excited to race...

 

"I’m coming back to seek some revenge at the Glen Coe Skyline as year I rolled my ankle on the out and back to Stob Coire nan Lochan. It’s a brutal route with close to 5000m of climb. I cannot wait."

 

VOOM ultra and fell runner Ellis Bland drinking VOOM carbohydrate energy drink Fusion Fuel whilst on a break during a trail run

 

 

Gavin Dale, winner of this year's Arc of Attrition 100 miler and a host of other events, currently sits in 2nd place in the Salomon Golden Trail Series rankings and will compete in the Ring if Steall race.

 

Gavin said "I'm really excited to be racing at Skyline Scotland this year! It's been one I've wanted to do for years, so it's amazing to be going into it as part of the Salomon Golden Trail Series Final. Bring on some epic ridgelines!"

 

Hydration and Nutrition for Sky Running

 

Our top three product picks to get you through Skyline Scotland, whatever the distance!

 

1) VOOM Caffeine Kick Pocket Rocket - A mental and physical lift just when you need it, whether that's to power round 5 or 10km trail race or as you battle fatigue during the grueling Glen Coe Skyline. Caffeine has been shown to aid concentration which can be key on those rough and rocky sections.

 

 

 

2) VOOM Hydrate Smart - Whether its unseasonably warm, or you're layered up for the cold, you're going to be sweating whilst taking on any of the Skyline Scotland events, so replacing electrolytes is key. Our hypotonic drink hydrates you faster than water alone so you can maintain performance throughout the races.

 

 

 

3) VOOM Powr Plant Endurance -  Aid arterial blood flow thanks to the nitrates naturally occurring in beetroot, as well enjoying sustained endurance energy from the oats, fruit juices and MCTs (medium chain triglycerides). Plus with three flavours to chose from its a tasty way to keep your energy stores topped up.

 

 

 

With thanks to No Limits Photography who own all rights to the images used in this article.

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