A real diagonal of fools !
It is probably one of the toughest mountain races in the world. In the jargon we call the Grand Raid, an “ultra-trail”. The common people nickname it “The diagonal of the fools”.
164km et 9700 meters of elevation gain, to run night and day to arrive at the end of a race that crosses all of Reunion, you really have to be crazy, yes!
And yet, the number of runners continues to climb. 5525 in 2016 toy started with in the ranks 36 countries represented. A nice spotlight for our island. And it does 28 years that hard.
The Grand Raid takes place October, it is certainly one of the major events of the year in Reunion Island.
It must be said that this extraordinary race, if it arouses respect and admiration, it requires incredible logistics. Already because the course is particularly dangerous (especially for the night couse) and that 5525 runners is not nothing to manage!
check point for scores, masseurs, comforters, nursing, Physicians,… All the volunteers are there to pamper all the runners, whether they are of international renown, top athletes or “Mr. and Mrs.” everyone who wishes Excel.
The Grand Raid adventure lasts 4 days, but most runners do the race in three days maximum… Crazy people we told you.
The Grand Raid actually counts 3 races : there is the largest, The Diagonal of Fools, Bourbon Trail, for those a little less crazy, but crazy all the same (112 km and more than 6000 meters of positive elevation) then the Mascarene, the little sister (with its 67km on the menu).
The winner of Grand Raid 2019 is a Haut-Savoyard, named Gregory Curmer, he runs the race in 23 hours and 33 minutes only ! He explains that this race is “the most difficult in the world” but also the biggest race of his career.
Arrived 50 minutes before the first Réunion, Nicolas Riviere, who ran the race in 24 hours and 26 minutes !
THE GRAND RAID IN FIGURES
5525 competitors will line up for the three races:
- Grand Raid: 2496
- Bourbon Trail: 1474
- Mascareigne: 1555
36 countries, 1215 Reunionese.
In 2016 the youngest before 19 years old, and the oldest 77 years old!
PS: Since 2013, Pardon became official partner of the Grand Raid. Awesome, isn't it?