Part 1 – Females
Season Final for the 2nd time at Shanghai Tower, with more than half a kilometer vertical difference to gain not an easy race. Especially hard for the sprinters, but that’s life. A get together of the world’s best Towerrunners to determine the final season ranking. As it should be no position was fix before.
Ladies first and starting order reverse to ranking, so the honour to open fell to Lim Mui Yee from Singapore. For the beginning half of elite females the start interval was 15 seconds, from these exactly the last 4 climbed to a Top10 finish and it was Chinese Linmin Chen, after passing a few others, who set the first real mark of the day with 22:02 (4th place). Australian Brooke Logan ended up in 5th, Huiji Zhang (CHN) on 8 and Rosalyn Russel from the Philippines placed on 9 in the final result.
Then the gap between athletes was widened to 30 seconds, starting with Mexican Elizabeth Aguilar ranked on 27 before Shanghai Tower. Meanwhile on 119th floor all now expected another best time by Valentina Belotti and the Italian mountain runner did it: 20:50, nearly a minute faster than last year ! Another top time was set by Laura Manninen (FIN), her 22:28 meant 6th and then Iwona Wicha from Poland raced to 10th. In her case after crossing the finish line physical recovery mixed with growing tension awaiting the male Tour decision.
At this moment the tension was greatest. Next to arrive were the three ranking leaders: Chinese Muhua Jian, one of the few to have beaten Suzy in a stair race and runner up here in 2018, Cindy Harris (USA) three weeks after a record 14th win at Chicago’s Willis Tower and with a theoretical chance to win the Tour and Suzy Walsham eager to maintain her winning streak, although not overenthusiastic about races as long as Shanghai Tower. Muhua arrived first, her 21:23 were clearly behind Valentina, but definitely at this moment meant Top3 at race as well as in Tour ranking. About half a minute later Suzy finished in 20:54 thus securing her 9th (8th in a row) Tour win. A narrow 4 second loss to Valentina, but she remains course record holder (20:35, 2018). Cindy finished in 22:53 which finally meant 7th in day, but solid runner up in Tour ranking
Towerrunning Tour 2019
1 Suzy Walsham (AUS) 1126
2 Cindy Harris (USA) 850
3 Muhua Jian (CHN) 750
4 Cristina Bonacina (ITA) 690,5
5 Maria Elisa Lopez (MEX) 670
6 Ilona Gradus (POL) 644
7 Kamila Chovanicova (SVK) 619
8 Valentina Belotti (ITA) 570
9 Sonja Shakespeare (GBR) 503,5
10 Janeth Rodriguez (MEX) 483
10 Sarah Frost (GBR) 472