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THANK YOU!

7 Jun 2019

Dear Everybody,

THANK YOU!
This isn’t just something we teach our boys to say when somebody helps them, it’s something we’re sending from the very bottoms of our hearts to everyone who was part of Ultra-Trail Australia this year.

If you raced for the first time, thank you for becoming part of this wonderful thing.
If you’ve raced before and came back for more, thank you for your continued faith in us.
If you cheered or crewed or supported, thank you for bringing the love – there was so much on course this year.
If you stayed out past midnight clapping runners home while our awesome commentary team tried to say big words under increasing fatigue, thank you.

And for the village behind this gigantic sprawling event (because it really does take a village), where do we start?

Thank you to every crew that established a checkpoint or aid station and the volunteers who staffed it.Thank you to the course markers who made sure that everyone adventuring out in the mountains with us could get to where they needed to.Thank you to the drivers and helpers who moved water, lollies, fruit, electrolyte, and cake to every corner of the mountains to help keep everyone energetic and hydrated.
Thank you to our incredible event safety team for playing such a crucial part in everyone’s experience, from long before entries open until well after our last runner is welcome home.
Thank you to our incredible logistics team who play such a crucial role in supplying and supporting all these moving parts with everything they need to function together seamlessly.
Thank you to our great friends from Gundungurra Country, you bring something so visceral and singular to all of our time in the mountains.
Thank you to the Blue Mountains community for your embrace of our little running festival.
Thank you especially to National Parks, Blue Mountains City Council, Friend Family, Carlon Family and Wellham Family for the land access and support you give each year so we can share this beautiful piece of Australia with more old and new friends of UTA.
Thank you to our very special staging and event partners at Scenic World, CMS, KCC and Fairmont Resort & Spa, we hope you get one-tenth of the thrills and excitement from UTA week that we do.
Thank you to our fantastic community of sponsors, old and new, for being such a supportive, accessible and important part of our competitor experience.
Thank you to all of our incredible finish line teams for making sure every runner was welcomed home and taken care of.
Thank you to our incredible team of professional staff for whom seeing every runner finish safe and happy is thank you enough – we’re thanking you girls and guys again anyway.
Thank you to our boys Archie and Jackson for running the Ultra-Kids Area and bringing a generational boost to the way we manage our ecological footprint, right through from the expo to the aid stations.

And this thank you is from both of us but I have to turn toward my Race Co-Director, spunky wife and amazing partner in all of life’s adventures and thank and praise Alina from the very centre of my soul – Al, thank you for so much more than that cheeky kiss at the start of the UTA11, thank you for being an unstoppable powerhouse, a phenomenal mum and a relentless force in shaping all that we do together. Every year, this race manages to give back over just one week the sweat and labour and dreams and sleepless nights of the entire year before. The way that even as we grow, the care and respect and appreciation that you all show for each other also grows is just beautiful, and something to deeply foster. Thank you RUNNERS. Thank you for trusting us with your epic adventure, thank you for keeping the experience and wellbeing of everyone around you at the centre of what you do, as much as we continue to keep it at the centre of what we do.

Hold on to the kindness, passion, humour, joy, excitement, gratitude, and spirit of wonder that I think all of us felt this year, and we will see you all again in 2020.

Until then, thank you for the unforgettable moments.

Tom Landon-Smith
Ultra-Trail Australia Founder and Race Director