2023 Race Report
Epic Experiences in Eryri!
The XTERRA Snowdonia Trail Marathon returned for another year with participants exploring the beautiful Eryri National Pary over ultra-marathon, marathon, half marathon & 10k races. Read on to find out how the race unfolded, and who will receive the invitational places for the XTERRA Trail Running World Championship Final.
The XTERRA Snowdonia Trail Marathon Eryri 2023 powered by UYN was part of the new XTERRA Trail Run World Series, with the marathon & half marathon offering the top-placed athletes a place in the invite-only XTERRA Trail Running World Championship.
Following last year's sweltering temperatures, it was good to see some cloud cover as the ultra-marathon athletes lined up for their 6.30am start. Early gusting winds on the summits of Eryri soon dropped, leaving a day that would warm up as it went along.
The Ultra Marathon encompassed 2,275m of climbing over 60km, visiting Cwm Tresgl and Cwm Pennant before rejoining the Marathon route to ascend the slopes of Yr Wyddfa (Snowdon). There was some incredible racing on a tough day; with a different story on the open and female categories.
In the women's race, Becky Hoare lead on most of the sections, saving her legs on the first descent to maintain her lead through the more technical and steep sections through Cwm Pennant and on the slopes of Yr Wyddfa. The top three women we close throughout the race with just minutes between them. Becky crossed the finish line in 07h28m57s, with Lu Teagle coming in at 07h31m17s, having made up nearly three and a half minutes on third-place Sonia Gasgon Lopez over the slopes of Yr Wyddfa. Sonia finish in a time of 7h33m44s, over 17 minutes ahead of the next competitor.
The Open category was similarly close throughout. A group of six runners justled for the lead through the first two-thirds of the course, but as is often the case, it was the final mountain stretch which ultimately decided the results on the day. James Nutt put in a very strong performance from Beddgelert with a drive for the podium, but it was Joe Farrelly and Ricki Wynne who would battle it out for the first two places. Having dropped back after the Beddgelert checkpoint, Ricki dug deep into his reserves to pull back, passing Joe on the long descent into Llanberis to take the tape in 5h45m29s, followed by Joe who crossed the line in 5hr46m48s. James' strong performance over the mountain brought him home in 5h59m17s, forcing last year's fastest male runner Mauro Persic into 4th place.
Next to go was the Marathon. With the sun now starting to make an appearance in the Eryri National Park, the scenery was beginning to show us why this is such a special place to race, but also bringing up the temperature for our runners. In the open category, James Hoad of Thames Hare & Hounds left the line opening up a lead by the Pen y Pass checkpoint. Harry Waring did his best to hunt him down over the mountain, closing the gap at the finish line to just 2 minutes, with James finishing in 4h04m10s, and Harry in 4h06m14s. Andrew Macdonald came home in third place, with a time of 4h23m54s.
In the women's race, Tinka Vinks lead right through to the Pen-y-Pass checkpoint but was caught on the mountain by her sister Sanne, leading to one of the closest finishes we have seen in the race; Tinka crossed the line in 4h44m21s, with Sanne just four seconds behind her in second place! Third place went to Nerys Jones in 5h00m21s.
The Half Marathon started at 9am and 430 athletes crossed the finish line in a race that is known as one of the most challenging half routes out there (some will say harder than the full!). First over the line was Oliver Radford in 1h51m01s, a little way ahead of 2nd and 3rd placed athletes Luke Beresford and Matthew Clark, who finished in 1h59m54s and 2h00m39s respectively. The women's race was won by Amy Lowe in 2h13m57s, just under two minutes ahead of Rhian Probert who finished in 2h16m26s. Josie Lloyd came in 3rd a few minutes later in 2h23m48s.
Last to start was the 10k and last year's outright winner Gemma Moore dominated the women's race, with a finishing time of 50m24s. Second & third places went to Claudia Nevett in 57m10s and Ruth Williams in 1h02m58s. Leon Chetcuti took the tape in the Open category, in a time of 47h46s, with Huw Gwynn following in 48m41s. Third place went to Tom Wright of Kirkby Milers AC in 51m59s.
Tim Lloyd, Director of Always Aim High Events said ‘The 2023 XTERRA Snowdonia Trail Marathon has been such a great success and we‘re so incredibly pleased to be back in Llanberis hosting this race again. We're pleased to share this event with so many fantastic runners, and also many local businesses, who were on hand to keep our athletes fed and watered! Some of the finish line faces and celebrations from the athletes and their loved ones will stay with me for a long time. It’s these moments that make all the work that goes into putting these races on worthwhile and it’s what we always set out to achieve.
As always, our Marshals, Mountain Leaders and staff have worked tirelessy to support our athletes, keeping them hydrated and fuelled and offering unfaltering encouragement throughout, I can’t thank them enough.
I’d also like to extend a thank you to Gwynedd Council for their continued support as well as the local community in Llanberis and all the spectators who turned out to cheer, rang bells and help create the amazing atmosphere which we are famous for.
Entries for 2024 are open and we’re expecting tickets to go quickly. We’re already planning ways to make 2024 even better.
Full race results for the 2023 XTERRA Snowdonia Trail Marathon.
Race photography was provided by Mel Parry Event Images.
Selected 2023 XTERRA Snowdonia Trail Marathon Results
Ultra Marathon Female:
🥇 Becky Hoare 07:28:58
🥈 Lu Teagle 07:31:18
🥉Sonia Gascon Lopez 07:33:45
Ultra Marathon Open:
🥇 Ricki Wynne 05:45:32
🥈 Joe Farrelly 05:46:49
🥉 James Nutt 05:59:18
🥇Tinka Vinks 04:44:22
🥈Sanne Vinks 04:44:26
🥉Nerys Jones 05:00:22
🥇James Hoad 04:04:11
🥈Harry Waring 04:06:15
🥉Andrew MacDonald 04:23:55
Half Marathon Female:
🥇Amy Lowe 02:13:57
🥈Rhian Probert 02:16:26
🥉Josie Lloyd 02:23:48
Half Marathon Open:
🥇Oliver Radford 01:51:01
🥈Luke Beresford 01:59:54
🥉Matthew Clark 02:39:00
🥇Gemma Moore 50:24
🥈Claudia Nevett 57:10
🥉Ruth Williams 01:02:58
🥇Leon Chectcuti 47:46
🥈Huw Gwynn 48:41
🥉Tom Wright 51:49