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Rob Sinclair and Sophie Grant win Lakes Sky Ultra 2018

Written by Fiona

July 15 2018

Rob Sinclair, from Scotland, and Sophie Grant, originally from New Zealand, triumphed in the Lakes Sky Ultra 2018 yesterday. Last year, Rob famously won and broke the records of the West Highland Way Race, The Fling and the Devil o’ the Highlands.

After winning the Lakes Sky Ultra (LSU) and narrowly missing a record-breaking time, he said: “The race was brilliant. It was a really good run.”

“It was super hot, but I felt good in the heat today.”

In the women’s race, New Zealand-born GB international trail runner Sophie, who placed second at LSU in 2016, won by over two and a half hours, in a time of 10:14:41.

She said: “That was fantastic. It’s just such a cool race.”

Runner Andy Bryce on Pinnacle Ridge in the Lakes Sky Ultra. Credit: ©

What is the Lakes Sky Ultra?

The LSU is a skyrunning race of 56km with 4,500m of ascent on extreme terrain in the Lake District National Park.

Skyrunning is a combination of mountain running and alpinism, where scrambling/rock climbing is likely.

For LSU, runners are vetted to ensure they have appropriate levels of experience in the mountains. The race is part of the UK Skyrunning Series.

It is the fourth time that the LSU has taken place at Ambleside in the Lake District National Park, Cumbria.

The race included runners from Austria, France, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Poland and Romania, as well as Britain.

Women’s race winner Sophie Grant on Pinnacle Ridge. Credit: ©

Lakes Sky Ultra 2018

The race started at 7am in warm conditions, peaking at around 20C in the afternoon, but with minimal shade for tired runners.

As the elite field of 74 runners began the ascent of Dove Crag (via Low Pike and High Pike), Great Britain-international trail runner Rob took an early lead.

By notorious Striding Edge, the Scot had a 10-minute advantage and as the day progressed it looked like he might break the course record of 7:30:27.

The first half of the course includes around two-thirds of the 4,500m of ascent and the majority of the technical ridge running, with the second half being faster, more runnable terrain.

Ultimately Sinclair arrived at the finish line in Ambleside just 10 minutes off the record.

Rob led from the start.

Tim Campion-Smith (GBR) was second. Last year he won the sister race, the Scafell Sky Race.

In third was Andy Berry (GBR), who was 13 minutes faster than his winning time last year.  He said: “The other two lads were just a different level today, I don’t have that in the tank at the minute.”

Following Sophie to the finish line in the women’s race was Kate Simpson (GBR) in second place and Jenny Yate (GBR) third.

The race awarded prize money, as well as prizes from race sponsors Salewa, Leki and Mountain fuel.

Full results. Find out more about all the Lake District Sky Trail Races.

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