Towerrunning World Cup Champions – Bogota 2012

This is the official press release.

December 8th is a public holiday in Colombia (Inmaculada Concepción). And this day also is a holiday for the Towerrunning sport. It is the traditional date of Carrera Ascenso Torre Colpatria, which hosts the Towerrunning World Cup final since 2010. As in the previous year many of the leading international stair climbers had been invited to the race in the heart of Colombian capital Bogota and joined the event to fight for the decisive World Cup points. Year after year the main challenge for the international athletes is to beat the Colombian runners being used to the 2600m altitude.

The venue is Torre Colpatria, a 50-story skyscraper, which is a landmark of the 8 million metropolis Bogota, illuminated every night by thirty-six color changing Xenon lights. In fact the event started the night before with fireworks and a special light show attracting thousands of people in the surrounding downtown streets.

On race morning action on stairs began as early as 8:00 am and within 3 hours about 5,000 athletes climbed up more than 900 stairs to the 48th floor after a short prerun. The elites had the privilege to ascend to the very top – the heliport of Colombia’s tallest building.

In respect to the women’s World Cup only one medal-decision was open. Behind Suzanne Walsham (AUS), who dominated the season and managed to secure her second World Cup title weeks before the final, Kristin Frey (USA) was the definite silver medallist. Cindy Harris (USA) had to finish 3rd at least in Bogota to overtake Cristina Bonacina in the fight for the bronze medal. The defending World Cup champion from Italy missed the race due to undergoing a surgery. Nevertheless it was clear, that for Harris the medal race would become a very difficult task in view of the strong Colombian field. 10 female elite athletes lined up at the start to climb Torre Colpatria in groups of two.

Surprise race winner became Blanca Liliana Moreno (COL) with a new track record for female athletes (6:14.0) beating two times previous champion Maria Eugenia Rodriguez (COL, 6:27.0) starting together with Cindy Harris in the penultimate pair and four time winner Angela Figueroa (6:38.8), who climbed with Suzanne Walsham in the last pair. Walsham narrowly missed the podium (6:47.0) and finished 6th – 28 seconds before Cindy Harris (7th, 7:15.4) so Cristina Bonacina remained on the World Cup Bronze medal rank. Although Suzanne Walsham wasn’t able to celebrate the 10th podium rank in her 10th season race, she achieved a total of 1380.0 World Cup points, which means a new points record in the Towerrunning history.

Even more exciting was the pre-race situation for the males. As World Cup leader Thomas Dold (GER) was not in Bogota Piotr Łobodzinski (POL) had the small chance to win the World Cup by winning the race in Torre Colpatria. Behind Dold and Łobodzinski not less than five further athletes were in the medal race too. Four of them participated in Bogota. Only Omar Bekkali (BEL), who was third in the ranking after his second place in Singapore two weeks before, did not join the World Cup final and therefore had to fear for his medal rank.

Finally on this sunny day track record holder Juan Pablo Rangel (COL) clocked his 4th win in a time of 4:44.1. Frank Nicolas Carreno became runner-up for the 3rd time in a row (4:58.5) and Nicolas Herrera finished third (5:11.7) so in the end again all six podium places went to the Colombian hosts and the international elite athletes must wait another year for the first top 3 result on the maybe hardest 980 stairs in the world.

Best foreign athlete became Bartosz Świątkowski (POL) on the 9th position (5:33.4). Although giving everything and being completely exhausted after the race this place did not bring him enough points to secure a World Cup medal. In the end he missed the required 5th rank by just 6 seconds so once more a few seconds in the last one of 157 races counting towards the World Cup ranking made the difference between the chance on a medal and the 6th position, which finally remained for Świątkowski – another bitter decision for the Polish Towerrunner, who already had the misfortune to lose the victory at this year’s Masters Race in Prague by 0.05 seconds (against compatriot Łobodzinski). The situation of Świątkowski strikingly reminds us of Łobodzinski’s Bogota race in 2011, where he missed the World Cup bronze medal by 6.8 seconds. This year things went better for him. Despite again being without a chance and finishing 17th in Torre Colpatria Łobodzinski could celebrate his first silver medal (1001.0 points) behind defending and new Towerrunning World Cup champion Thomas Dold.

Not only Dold, another German had a reason to celebrate too: Christian Riedl (GER) became 12th in Bogota (5:42.7). With a total of 961.2 World Cup points he finished the season on the bronze medal rank – with a razor-thin edge over Omar Bekkali (954.0) and Tomas Celko (948.0), who was not able to improve his score in Bogota with his 22nd rank. Fabio Ruga became 16th in Bogota and 7th in the World Cup ranking.

Besides the World Cup athletes and Colombian elite runners thousands of children and amateur runners accepted the challenge to climb Torre Colpatria and thereby raised funds for Operacion Sónrisa, the leading global foundation to provide surgery to children with cleft lip and palate, facial tumors or burns. It was a logistical masterpiece of the race organizers to manage an event with so many climbers and to provide fair and safe conditions for everyone. Additionally there was a lot of supporting programme for athletes, visitors and the press.

The exciting race day in Bogota was terminated in the spotlight of the media, when the coveted trophies and medals of the Towerrunning World Cup 2012 were handed out to the champions. In the end everyone agreed, that Carrera Ascenso Torre Colpatria once more was a worthy final for a great Towerrunning season – a season with almost 200 events in 27 countries attracting about 105,000 participants from 54 nations.

Bogota 2012, Towerrunning, Amateur Race

Bogota 2012, Towerrunning, Amateur Race

Bogota 2012, Towerrunning, Amateur Race

Bogota 2012, Towerrunning, Amateur Race

Towerrunning 2012, Bogota from above

Towerrunning 2012, Bogota from above

Towerrunning 2012, Bogota, Colpatria Tower

Towerrunning 2012, Bogota, Colpatria Tower

Towerrunning 2012, Bogota, Colpatria Tower

Towerrunning 2012, Bogota, Colpatria Tower

Towerrunning 2012, Bogota, Elite on the top

Towerrunning 2012, Bogota, Elite on the top

Towerrunning 2012, Bogota,

Towerrunning 2012, Bogota,

Towerrunning 2012, Bogota, Łobodziński and Riedl

Towerrunning 2012, Bogota, Łobodziński and Riedl

Towerrunning 2012, Bogota, Walsham Cup

Towerrunning 2012, Bogota, Walsham Cup


Towerrunning – SkyRise Chicago 2012

This is an official press release.

SkyRise Chicago
November 4th, 2012
Jesse Berg and Kristin Frey win SkyRise Chicago

SkyRise Chicago means climbing the highest building in the Western Hemisphere. 2109 stairs lead to the SkyDeck of Willis Tower 443 m above the “windy city”.

 More than 2,200 stair climbers from seven nations lined up at the start to take part in this last 2012 North American World Cup Masters Race.

Fastest on top was Chicagoan Jesse Berg claiming this 3rd win after 2006 and 2010. With 13:59 he was clearly ahead of John „Oz” Osborn (14:16) and Josh Emery (14:18). Kevin Crossman placed 4th in 14:27. Next came Alexander Workman (15:13) narrowly beating Austrian Norbert Lechner, whose 15:16 placed him 6th. Javier Santiago from Mexico finished 11th.

Among the Top10 overall fastest climbers of the day there were two female athletes. With a personal best of 14:57 current World Cup 2nd Kristin Frey from Schaumburg (USA) finally made friends with the tower she often called „the beast” before. Last year’s winner Cindy Harris from Indianapolis climbed 15:26 for the 2nd place. Minutes after her race she stunned the spectators by making handstand on the glass balcony of the skydeck. Third rank went to Sherrie Breese (16:32). Roxanne Sanchez and Karen Geninatti followed on ranks 4 and 5.

SkyRise Chicago is a charity event supporting the RIC (Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago). Some of the RIC patients were among the participants, too. The 31-year-old amputee Zac Vawter has made history by climbing the 103 floors with a bionic leg controlled by his mind. He defeated the tower in about 45 minutes. Besides the stair climb there was the option to master the equivalent race distance and elevation on stationary hand-cycles in the lobby of Willis Tower.

In the World Cup rankings Jesse Berg remains on rank 8 (834.0 points), but was able to close the gap towards the medal ranks. Towerrunning Austria champion Norbert Lechner is 9th with 781.0 points. Kevin Crossman is now ranked 11th, while John “Oz” Osborn made it up into the top 30 again. Kristin Frey consolidated her second rank behind Suzanne Walsham (AUS) in women’s World Cup ranking. Cindy Harris is 4th and made up some ground on Cristina Bonacina, who currently holds the bronze medal rank.

Further Towerrunning highlights in November will be the Eureka Climb in Melbourne (November 18th) and the Swissotel Vertical Marathon in Singapore (November 25th). On December 8th the World Cup final will again take place in Bogota (COL).

SkyRise Chicago 2012

SkyRise Chicago 2012

SkyRise Chicago 2012

SkyRise Chicago 2012

SkyRise Chicago 2012

SkyRise Chicago 2012

SkyRise Chicago 2012

SkyRise Chicago 2012

SkyRise Chicago 2012

SkyRise Chicago 2012



Towerrunning – Basel, 21st April 2012

This an official press release.


21st April, 2012

World Cup Results and Press Release

It was a select field that has met up to participate in Towerrunning Basel 2012. 565 athletes from 12 countries completed the race including a 200 meters pre-run and 31 floors in the Messeturm, the highest building in Switzerland. Among them elite stair climbers from Europe, Australia, China and the United States competed for valuable points for the Towerrunning World Cup and the Vertical World Circuit.

Man of the day was German athlete Christian Riedl. He defeated the 542 stairs in 2:36.0 min. and thus broke the course record of Tomas Celko (SVK), winner of the previous two editions, by 1.3 seconds. Celko (2:43.2) at the end had to be satisfied with third place, since Italian Fabio Ruga with a time of 2:39.0 also placed before him. On fourth rank Bartosz Swiatkowski (POL) celebrated the best Masters Race result in his Towerrunning career.

In the women’s competition Marie Fee Breyer with a time of 3:26,6 laid the foundation for a possible German double victory. After neither last year’s World Cup champion Cristina Bonacina (ITA, 6th rank) nor the current World Cup leader Kristin Frey (USA, 3rd rank) could undercut the time of Breyer, her hopes for the third consecutive Basel triumph rose. But then Suzanne Walsham (AUS) managed to clock an incredible 3:11,4. This amazing time was not only 21 seconds faster than Breyer’s climb, but also smashed the track record by more than 15 seconds. After winning in London and finishing 2nd at the Empire State Building Run-Up Walsham celebrated her third podium finish in the current season, making her one of the top favourites for winning the Towerrunning World Cup.

The special international class of the again outstandingly organized race with a prize money fund of more than 2.000 € becomes clear when looking at the results sheets: In the men’s race the top 8 runners came from eight different nations and at the women’s podium runners from three continents were represented.

Besides the event for international elite athletes separate races for kids, teams and fire-fighters were held. Worthy of mention in this connection is the performance of Spaniard David Robles Tapia, who not only achieved a brilliant 5th rank in the individual competition, but also won the fire-fighters’ team event with his colleagues from the “Bomberos Ayuntamiento Zaragoza”. 108 fire crews with complete turnout gear (in the elite category even with breathing apparatus) assembled at the start line in front of the Messeturm, which led to plenty of action and overtaking in the narrow staircase of the tower.

After taking the stairs in Basel the European Towerrunning scene picks up steam. In May national stair climbing series in Czech Republic (Run Up Series) and Austria (Towerrunning Austria) will be launched and the Masters Races in Warsaw (May 19th) and Berlin (May 27th) will attract a lot of international stair climbers. On 3 June the MesseTurm in Frankfurt will host the first Towerrunning European Championships.

Further information:

Please see:

32 races in two weeks. The Towerrunning season is in full swing

32 races in two weeks. The Towerrunning season is in full swing and the results of three US Masters Races as well as European highlights in London and Madrid led to various position changes in the World Cup rankings.


Hustle Up the Hancock

The „Hustle” going up John Hancock Center at Chicago´s Magnificent Mile is according to many climbers the most popular stair race of town. For the 2012 edition on February 26th more than 3,600 climbers accepted the challenge and participated in the second Masters Race of the season.

First elite to climb was Jesse Berg (USA), followed by Justin Stewart (USA) and Kevin Crossman (USA). Starting in a 7-8 sec interval these three favourites soon met up in the stairwell and climbed most of the race together. As Kevin Crossman lost some ground at floor 80 the victory went to Justin Stewart who crossed the finish line immediately after Jesse. Finally the Top 3 were within 6 seconds. The female race was taken by 2011 World Cup bronze medalist Kristin Frey – a special win for her in the building, where two years ago her climbing career started. With a very strong finish she held off multiple Hancock winner Cindy Harris. The third place went to Kourtney Dexter and these three all placed among the Top10 overall.

With his victory in Chicago Justin Stewart took the lead in the World Cup ranking and the leading US climbers Kristin Frey and Cindy Harris defended their positions on top of the ranking.

Vertical Rush London

On March 1st about 1,200 climbers lined up at the start of the first European season highlight in London’s Tower 42. The Vertical Rush being a member of the Vertical World Circuit and a Towerrunning World factor 1.5 race attracted elite athletes from nine nations including the reigning World Cup champions Thomas Dold (GER) and Cristina Bonacina (ITA).

Suzanne Walsham (AUS) pulverized the course record for female athletes by more than one minute and finished the race in 5:01 – 49 second ahaed of Alessandra Valgoi (ITA). Another two seconds behind Valgoi Cristina Bonacina came in on third rank. Fastest climber of the day was once again Thomas Dold. After winning in Sao Paulo and New York he achieved his third consecutive victory. After 3:58 Dold reached the finish line and was thereby 13 seconds faster than second placed Italian Fabio Ruga. Three times World Cup bronze medalist Tomas Celko (SVK) finished third after 4:30.

Besides an incredible view over the streets of London Thomas Dold received 120 valuable points for the World Cup, which brought him back in lead again.

Scale the Strat

Three days later on March 4th there were a lot of people gasping for air at the next Masters Race in Las Vegas. It was the second day of the Scale the Strat 2012 – the final climb-off. The day before more than 350 participants tried to qualifiy for this final in the 108-floor inner stairwell of the Stratosphere tower – the tallest building west of the Mississippi.

Fastest stair climber of the final day was Kevin Crossman, who took a mere 7 minutes and 5 seconds to scramble up the 1,455 steps. Eric Leninger and qualifying winner Blue Benadum completed the US triple-vicotry. Best foreign climber was fifth-placed Javier Santiago (MEX). With the assistance of her “pacemaker” Eric Leninger, the first-placed female Kourtney Dexter finished in 8 minutes and 33 seconds, just two seconds ahead of Kristin Frey, who won the qualifying round on Saturday. Rank 3 and 4 went to Cindy Harris (USA) and Veronica Stocker (CAN).

When asked about what it’s like stair racing, Frey meant, “It’s a painful experience. It’s a lot worse than any running race I’ve done or any other sport I’ve participated in.”

With another 120 points Kristin Frey extended her comfortable leading position in the World Cup ranking and made again a big step towards her third consecutive World Cup medal in 2012.

Fight for Air Climb Chicago

On the second March weekend the Presidential Towers in Chicago were in the focus of the stair climbing scene. At The “Fight for Air Climb Chicago” as the fourth 2012 Towerrunning World Cup Masters Race four towers, 180 stories and 2340 stairs had to be mastered.

As previously expected a great duell arised between 2011 World Cup silver medalist Jesse Berg and Justin Stewart, who had the chance to take the World Cup lead again with a first or second place result in Chicago. After the first of four towers Berg was a whisker ahaed – two second faster than Stewart. At the second climb Justin Stewart gained five seconds and overtook Jesse Berg. In the third building Stewart again was six seconds faster and now had an overall advance of nine seconds compared to Berg. All other participants already were more than one minute behind.

Although Jesse Berg dominated the last climb (4:01 minutes) and Justin Stewart only achieved the fourth best time in tower four (4:08 minutes) Stewart won the competition with an overall time of 15:41 minutes. And the newly crowned World Cup leader couldn’t get enough. He went back for another round of 4 x 45 floors and was very fast again.

Instead Jesse Berg had to be pleased with the second place (15:43). Third with an overall time of 17:01 was Javier Santiago (MEX).

The women’s race was dominated by Kristin Frey (18:34) who already celebrated her fourth victory and seventh podium finish in 2012. The second place went to Kourtney Dexter. With a time of 18:55 she was 12 seconds faster than third placed Cindy Harris.

Now with Kristin Frey, Cindy Harris and Kourtney Dexter three US ladies are on top of the world ranking.

Towerrunning – World Cup News, 30.01.2012

The Corrida Vertical in Sao Paulo announced as final event of the ISF stair climbing series „Vertical World Circuit 2011” originally was scheduled in December and in another building. Finally some international top athletes climbed Edificio Abril in Sao Paulo on January 25.

As is common procedure in buildings of this kind the finish at the very top – the heliport – was restricted to the elites. Starting every 30 seconds with a horn blow on the street before the tower, through the lobby and into the stairwell the runners climbed up sometimes on marble stairs and finally sprinted out in the open on the heliport to the finish line.

Female winner was 2009 World Mountain Running Champion Valentina Belotti (ITA) in 3:53 beating Kristin Frey (USA) with 4:15 and Cristina Bonacina (ITA) with 4:33. In opposite to the World Cup final in Bogota the Brazilian home runners had no chance against the international elite.

The male race was a clear story too. Thomas Dold (GER) needed 3:03 and so was 11 seconds faster than Omar Bekkali (BEL). On 3rd one second behind Fabio Ruga (ITA). Not too happy with his race was Matthias Jahn (GER) who took 4th in 3:27. The next places went to the best home athlete Evander Franco (BRA) and Norbert Lechner (AUT).

The current leaders of the Towerrunning World Cup – the official world ranking for the stair climbing sport governed and regulated by Towerrunning Office Vienna – are Thomas Dold (GER) with 240 points and Kristin Frey (USA) with 260 points after their podium ranks in Sao Paulo. The United States stair climbing team defends the lead in the Nations Cup.

On February 4th Brazil will again host a Towerrunning World Cup event. With the „Corrida Vertical” in Florianopolis the new Brazilian Towerrunning series „Circuito Brasil de Corrida Vertical” will be launched.

Other selected upcoming World Cup Races:
-> Empire State Building Run Up (New York, USA), February 8th — Masters Race
-> Canarias Vertical Run (Las Palmas, ESP), February 10th

Nations Cup - 27.01.2012

Race - Sao Paolo

Female - 27.01.2012

Male - 27.01.2012


All the information provided by Sebastian Wurster