HOKA athlete Guillaume Beauxis with his child as he crosses the finish line

For one week every year, the ultra-trail-running community descends on the small town of Chamonix in the French Alps for what many regard as the pinnacle of the trail running season. 

HOKA athlete Harry Jones high-fives the crowd into the finish

With seven races across three countries, more than 10,000 athletes from 100 different nations and thousands more fans and volunteers on the streets and foothills of the Alps, Ultra-Trail du Mont-Blanc is an event that means so much to the community of ultra runners around the world.

HOKA athlete Canhua Luo in action in the UTMB

The international festival of trail running provides the perfect opportunity for our elite athletes from across the world to come together as one team, one HOKA ONE ONE.

HOKA athletes Ruth Theresia and Kaci Lickteig chat and smile

Audrey Tanguy was aiming to create new memories after her success in the same event in 2018, and boy did she succeed.

HOKA athlete Audrey Tanguy at the finish line crying

Audrey arrived into Chamonix in the early hours of the morning after more than 21 hours of racing. In a race of 145km, it all came down to the final 10km where Audrey broke clear to win the title for the second year in a row.

HOKA athlete Ludovic Pommeret runs into the finishing straight

The 2016 UTMB winner, Ludovic Pommeret, rolled back the years to prove why he’s a true legend of ultra-trail running. Ludo moved through the field from 39th at the first checkpoint to 3rd at the last.

HOKA athlete Ludo Pommeret faces the media

While Audrey, Ludo and co were up in the mountains, the rest of the HOKA team were in town to meet the trail running community that had gathered in Chamonix.

HOKA athletes and fans at the signing session

Fans had the chance to meet their favourite HOKA stars before heading out on a run in the Evo Mafate and Evo Speedgoat with our friends from i-Run.

Close up of the HOKA Evo Mafate

High-quality races kept on coming. Hot on the heels of the OCC came the race that has climbed from being the little sister of the UTMB to one of the world’s most prestigious in its own right.

Team HOKA line up at the signing session

It was touch and go whether Thibaut Garrivier would be able to line up at all for the CCC after injury earlier this summer. After a year of ups and downs, the 29-year-old aimed to simply come away with a positive experience.

HOKA athlete Thibaut Garrivier smiles after the race

The flying Frenchman proved that he can more than compete with the best. Despite two months of missed training and a cautious first 50km on Friday, Thibaut finished second in his first race over 100km.

HOKA athlete Thibaut Garrivier runs into the finishing straight

Shortly before the CCC ended, more than 2,000 runners gathered on the streets of Chamonix to set off on their 2019 UTMB adventure.

The start of UTMB

We all have our own markers of individual success. For many, the challenge of running 171km around the Mont Blanc massif is the peak of their ultra-running ambitions.

HOKA athlete Tim Tollefson at an aid station

When you can empty the tank and get the result you deserve, it is the best feeling in the world, as it was for Guillaume Beauxis and Harry Jones.

HOKA athlete Harry Jones smiles through the pain and the dark

But sport is full of highs and lows, and sometimes it just doesn’t come off. When the going gets tough, you’ve just got to stick it out and smile, soak up the support and have the courage to make the decisions you believe in.

HOKA athlete Ildiko Wermescher stands at the finish

Photo credits: PEIGNÉE VERTICALE