An interview with the race directors

1. So, the race is in its 5th year now, what gave you the idea to start the race in this area of Sardinia?

Sardinia is a fantastic place, but the Supramonte (mountain) area of ​​Baunei is one of the few places to have all the features for a great trailrunning event.

The elevation gain, the different types of terrain, the spectacular nature of the trails near the cliffs overlooking the sea, and the large wilderness areas are just some of the characteristics that make this place unique.

2. How much has the race changed since the first year? have you added different distances or changed the course at all?

Over the years it has been necessary to make some changes to the race in order to overcome some logistical problems, while the first two years the arrival was located in the Golgo area outside the inhabited area of ​​Baunei, now athletes arrive directly in the village center. For this reason the UTSS 80k has changed to 90k The TSS 33k is now 43k. And the BSS has gone from 20k to 25k. 

In the last few years we have added a 16k race that can be tackled as a fast hike or run for people who are new to trail running.

Look out for the giant limestone arch

3. The race also has ITRA points for two of the distances. What level of experience do you think is required to compete in the different distances? 

As for the UTSS 90k 4500 D +, there are 4 ITRA points,  and 2 ITRA points for the TSS 43k 2500D +. Both require good experience on technical terrain and adequate equipment. The 25k and 16k are suitable for beginners or people who are new to the world of trail running.

Just passing the first 5k point

4. What advice/preparation/ and type of gear, would you suggest to runners competing in the 90km (and other) distances?

Do not be fooled by the proximity of the sea, many parts of the course are not different from those that could be found in the high mountains. You hardly ever run on soft ground but almost always on rock, so you need well-cushioned shoes with a well-structured sole.

I think it is necessary to train for uphills/downhills/ technical terrain, and have a good endurance base. it passes very quickly from ascent to descent and from fast stretches to extremely slow stretches.

Fran hitting the downhills

5. You put a lot of thought into the race course. We also see you have different medals and t shirts each year. This makes the race stand out from many others. Did you plan it this way?

These aspects reflect our vision of trailrunning as a tool for exploration and knowledge of the territory. T-shirts and medals must be memories that can revive the moments experienced during the race.

Every year we look for different materials for our handmade medals: terracotta, juniper wood, metal oxidized with sea water. On the T-shirt we like to put an image that recalls the territory and the history of the municipality of Baunei.

Theres an abundance of limestone cliffs during the first half of the race

6. Congratulations on getting sponsored by Hoka Europe, do you think this will help grow the event?  

Certainly for us the association with the Hoka One One brand is a great achievement, an opportunity to collaborate with a great leading brand in the running sector.

Being part of the Hoka sponsored race circuit and making our race known to the athletes of the team and the many fans of the brand will be a sure element of growth.

Hoka Evo Mafate

Hoka Torrent

Hoka Speedgoat 2

7. We have run more than half the course and noticed many beautiful places. Some of the beaches are amazing. Do you recommend that runners stay for a few days after the race to recover and enjoy the area?

  Surely the vastness and beauty of the territory of Baunei deserves a more thorough visit so you can appreciate all its features. The month of October, characterized by slightly cooler temperatures, offers visitors the opportunity to enjoy these places in tranquility without the typical summer crowds.

After a hard days running, there’s nothing like relaxing on one of the many beaches in Sardinia

8. Do you have other races or events that you run in Sardinia? and what future races or events do you have planned?

Yes,we currently have a multiday race “Sardinia Extreme Track” scheduled from 25 April to 2 May 2019. For those who want to immerse themselves in the nature of Supramonte (mountain areas) without compromise. The total distance in 5 days, independently of food and following the GPS track, will be 200km + 11000D +. The athletes will sleep every night in the tented camps set up by our staff without ever having contact with civilization.

What an adventure!!

9. And finally, where can people find out more about the race, travel, and accomodation options?

The main information regarding the Ultratrack Supramonte Seaside can be found on the website: https://www.ultrasupramonte.com

Curiosity, photos and updates are available on our social networks:

Instagram: @utssbaunei

Facebook: @utssbaunei

Youtube channel: Artzia Sardegna

As for information on how to organize the trip and how to find accommodation we rely on a local travel agency:

ByNos Travel https://www.bynostravel.it

Thank you for hosting Fran and I and showing us your race and the beautiful parts of Baunei from the ocean to the mountains.
It really is a race that stands out from many others due to the diversity of the course and the wild places it runs through.
Good luck for this years race, we will definitely be coming back to run these trails again…

Interview given by Matteo Casula, president of the Artzia ASD association.