Home Running Sidónio Freitas and the Madeira Island Extremely-Path – iRunFar

Sidónio Freitas and the Madeira Island Extremely-Path – iRunFar

Sidónio Freitas and the Madeira Island Extremely-Path – iRunFar


AJW's Taproom[Author’s Note: This is the second of a 10-part series in AJW’s Taproom called Race Director Chronicles, where we profile the unsung heroes who make our sport’s racing possible.]

“As it’s been from the very starting, our objective is to ship a world-class path working enjoy that showcases the herbal good looks and distinctive demanding situations of Madeira Island, whilst additionally offering truthful festival in a secure, sustainable, and stress-free match for all individuals and spectators.” — Sidónio Freitas

Madeira Island is a Portuguese territory positioned within the Atlantic Ocean, over 900 kilometers west of Portugal. Since 2008, Madeira has been house to the Madeira Island Extremely-Path (MIUT) working match, and from the start Sidónio Freitas has directed the race.

What started as a club-sponsored run for 141 individuals in 2008 has grown to a global extremely spectacle, which draws over 3,000 runners to the island each and every April. Whilst the weeklong match options a number of distances, the marquee match is the 115-kilometer race, which traverses all of the island from Porto Moniz at the northwest coast of the island to Machico at the southeast coast. Packed into the 115 kilometers is over 7,000 meters of elevation achieve around the stunningly gorgeous and brutally rugged mountains of Madeira Island.

Sidónio Freitas (right) with men's winner François D'haene. François is holding the tape and the clock reads 13:50:49.

Sidónio Freitas (proper) with males’s winner François D’haene on the end of the 2019 Madeira Island Extremely-Path. All pictures: iRunFar/Meghan Hicks

Because the longstanding race director, Freitas derives his private delight in easy tactics. “To me, probably the most pleasurable facet is when the race begins after which finishes with none severe issues.” And, after a pause, Freitas provides, “And, it’s nice and powerfully emotional to witness the folk coming in to our end line.”

Freitas believes that there are 4 elements that make MIUT so particular:

  1. Shocking herbal surroundings: The race takes position at the gorgeous island of Madeira, which boasts breathtaking coastal and mountain landscapes. The course takes runners thru quite a few terrain, alongside steep and lengthy cliffs and luxurious inexperienced forests, offering an unforgettable path working enjoy.
  2. Difficult direction: The direction for MIUT 115 is thought of as very tricky, with steep climbs and descents. The technical terrain, plentiful stairs, and unpredictable climate prerequisites make the race uniquely tough. This is a true take a look at of staying power and ability for even probably the most skilled path runners.
  3. Supportive group: MIUT has a robust and supportive group of volunteers, organizers, and spectators who cheer at the runners and supply help alongside the way in which. This creates a good and alluring environment that is helping inspire and encourage individuals to push themselves to their limits.
  4. Cultural immersion: The development supplies a chance for runners to enjoy the wealthy tradition and traditions of Madeira, together with native delicacies, tune, and festivities. This cultural immersion provides to the whole enjoy of the development and makes it a in reality distinctive and noteworthy enjoy.
Katie climbing with a handrail and smiling.

Katie Schide taking the massive mountains in stride on her solution to 2nd position within the 2019 Madeira Island Extremely-Path. 3rd position Audrey Tanguy is within the background.

Freitas and his staff paintings onerous no longer handiest to supply a world-class match however to supply individuals a doubtlessly once-in-a-lifetime enjoy, which matches past working to construct a more potent group, carry consciousness, and nurture cross-cultural figuring out.

After all, an match of this magnitude isn’t with out its demanding situations, particularly given the far off location. Freitas explains that he and his staff spend months getting ready for the race and grappling with what he believes are the 3 greatest demanding situations:

  1. Direction control: The rugged and technical terrain of MIUT’s direction gifts a vital problem for direction control. We need to make sure that the direction is well-marked and maintained, and that protection measures are in position.
  2. Logistics and coordination: MIUT comes to coordinating a lot of logistics, together with transportation, volunteer staffing, and clinical strengthen. We should make sure that a lot of these parts are arranged and functioning easily, to give you the easiest imaginable enjoy for runners and spectators alike.
  3. Environmental sustainability: With its delicate ecosystems and numerous flora and fauna, Madeira Island calls for cautious attention and control to make sure that the development is environmentally sustainable. In each and every version we attempt to reduce up to imaginable the development’s affect at the surroundings and advertise conservation efforts.

“For me, above all else, directing MIUT calls for a excessive degree of group, making plans, and a spotlight to element. There may be the wish to stability the calls for of managing a large-scale match with the wish to supply a secure and sustainable enjoy for all individuals.”

After all, I requested Freitas what probably the most greatest adjustments he has noticed within the game for the reason that first version of MIUT in 2008. Mentioning the growth in path working’s recognition, higher professionalization on the elite finish of the game, developments in equipment and era, higher range, and environmental consciousness, it’s transparent to me that Freitas has his finger at the pulse of the game. In his paintings because the race director of MIUT, additionally it is transparent to me that Freitas is operating onerous to stability all of the adjustments within the game with the values that he and his race staff cling so pricey.

Bottoms up!

AJW’s Beer of the Week

This week’s beer of the week is, no longer unusually, certainly one of Portugal’s most well liked beers and one that is to be had in quite a lot of puts in North The us. From the massive Portuguese brewery, Tremendous Bock, comes Tremendous Bock Stout, a wealthy, hearty stout with the entire frame and texture of vintage stouts around the globe. Tremendous Bock Stout effectively marries the wonder and bitterness of standard high-end stouts in a package deal this is unusually inexpensive.

Name for Feedback

  • Have you ever run the Madeira Island Extremely-Path and noticed race director Sidónio Freitas onerous at paintings?
  • If no longer, is it to your bucket record?!



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