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You just can’t help but fall in love with the mountains

by Editor
Wednesday 17th June 2015
Tags  ASICS Beat the Sun   |   ASICS   |   Beat the Sun   |   Holly Rush   |   ASICS Outrun The Sun   |   Chamonix   |   Mont Blanc

Interview: We speak to Holly Rush ahead of this weekend's ‘ASICS Beat the Sun’ challenge, nature’s toughest challenge which will take place on June 21, the longest day of the year

A few months ago, ASICS launched a global search to find 15 Runners to take on the ultimate challenge – ASICS Beat the Sun. (HERE)

ASICS ‘Beat the Sun’ challenges amateurs and professional athletes from across the world to race against each other and the sun, around the iconic Mont Blanc, between sunrise and sunset. Following the success of the challenge last year, ASICS returns to Chamonix on June 21st for the longest day of the year (it’s only fair to give them as much chance as possible, it’s over 150km).

Crossing three countries, Italy, France and Switzerland the runners will experience a range of terrains, altitudes and lengths of running as they relay race around the entire circumference of Mt Blanc.  

Professional runner Holly Rush is an ex-international road marathon runner who has represented Great Britain and England over six times, but is most happiest running trail with her dog! Holly’s team narrowly missed the sun last year by 30 seconds, so this year is hoping to beat it!

The inaugural ASICS Outrun The Sun - June 21, 2014

Photos: Holly Rush from the UK and her team mates finished just 40 seconds behind the sun

Question You took part in ASICS Beat the Sun last year - your team narrowly missed the sun last year by 30 seconds. How determined are you to shave off those 30 seconds this year?

Answer I think it’s going to be tough as we are split into smaller teams, mixed with amateurs and pros. That’s why it’s such an exciting challenge. ASICS don’t want to make it easy. Logistically it’s going to be tough getting people all over the place... let’s face it there will be a big mountain in the way, but we are all fired up for it. Let’s hope there are no loose animals on the course to get in the way. Last year one of our team had to stop to rescue a goat caught in a fence!

Question What was the biggest challenge during the race in 2014?

Answer The biggest challenge was the weather, it was so hot. Two days before I had recced my leg over the Col Du Bonhomme and its was a white out...on the day I got sunburnt! Hydration was an issue.

Question How are you preparing for the challenge?

Answer Well, I am in training for the IAU World 100k in September, so lots of high mileage. Not a huge amount of mountain training if I am honest but I know I can run a long way.

Question What are you worried about the most?

Answer I’m not worried about anything as I know ASICS do such a good job organising the event and the whole thing is very professional. I just hope the weather is good and everyone enjoys the experience.

Question What are you looking forward to the most?

Answer Just hanging out with all the team in Chamonix. I love the place, it’s a mecca for trail running, you just can’t help but fall in love with the mountains. I can’t wait to see Charlottes (GB Amateur on Northern Europe Team) face when she gets out on the course.

Holly will be running alongside chosen amateurs Charlotte Love, a student from Loughborough University, who was selected based on her running ability as well as her motivation to take on the challenge.

Diagnosed with stage 4 Hodgkins Lyphom in her first year of university, Charlotte was determined not to let the cancer dictate her life. She had always been an active person but used running as a way of staying fit and healthy. She is an exemplary example of someone who strives to be the best she can be, isn’t afraid of a challenge and has a positive outlook on life.

Read our interview with Charlotte (HERE)

Find out more about the ASICS ‘Beat the Sun’ challenge at beatthesun.asics.com/uk


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