Counting the hours to tomorrow’s Vertical World Circuit semi-finals we have the ranking leaders together with a record 1,600 runners toeing the line to ascend the 1,460 steps and 54 floors of the Shanghai IFC tower in the city’s financial centre, hosted by the SHKP Vertical Run for Charity – Race to Shanghai IFC.
Reigning world champion and current VWC ranking leader, Piotr Lobodzinski from Poland is back to see if he can beat the incredible record he set here last year in 7’51”.
“I’m very excited to come back for the third time to Shanghai to race the IFC building, one of the best in the VWC. My shape seems to be very good so I hope to defend my last year’s win and will try to improve my course record.” Commented Lobodzinski. “Wish me luck!”
VWC super-star Suzy Walsham from Australia is the world’s number one female stair racer, VWC world champion and ranking leader. Absent here last year when the race was won by China’s Gan Xue in 10’10”, Walsham is expected to beat that time and come closer to the course record which she set in 9’20”.
“It’s great to be back in Shanghai and I have good memories of this race from 2014,” says Walsham. “The stairwell is quite good and I like how we have a few breaks from the stairs on the way up. This is an important race for my overall VWC point score so I will be doing my best to try to secure as many points as possible.”
Both leaders each have a clear four wins under their belts but will need the best results of five out of the VWC nine races. An extra 20% points are awarded at the grand finale at the SHKP Vertical Run for Charity: Race to Hong Kong ICC on December 4.
Challenging the champions will be China’s 3 Hoi Chun Eric Yeung, ranked 3rd, Australia’s Mark Bourne, 4th, Italian Emanuele Manzi, 5th and Austrian Norbert Lechner, ranked 7th in the men’s field.
The women’s top names include Italy’s Cristina Bonacina, ranked 2nd, Lenka Swbikova from the Czech Republic, 3rd and Australian Alice McNamara, 5th.
Tomorrow’s SHKP Vertical Run for Charity – Race to Shanghai IFC represents the eighth race of the nine-race 2016 Vertical World Circuit after London, Dubai, New York, Paris, Manila, Sydney and Bejing.