Chianti Trail Ultra 2019: Matteo Matteuzzi talks to Advendure about the second edition of the race in the magical Tuscany!

Από 07 Ιαν 2019

On March 23 & 24 of 2019, the picturesque medieval village of Radda in Chianti, located in the heart of the enchanting Tuscany in Italy, will host the second edition of the Chianti Trail Ultra. The athletes who will participate in one of the three races (15K, 37K and 73K) will have the opportunity to run through the vineyards, olive groves, picturesque villages of the area and the paths of the San Michele Mountain, but also to have a taste of the culture of a place with great historic tradition, which is also famous for its amazing wines. Advendure for a second year is an official media sponsor of the race and will participate in it. In this context, we contacted Chianti Trail Ultra leader, Mr. Matteo Matteuzzi, in order to learn more details about their plans for this year's race, as well as the interesting changes, additions and new all-inclusive packages they propose.



[Advendure]: Second edition in 2019 for Chianti Trail Ultra, with the previous year’s race leaving us with the best impressions, organizational but also regarding the landscapes and the area. What can we expect from the "black rooster" in 2019? If the goal of the first edition of the race was to introduce the beautiful Chianti area to the mountain running community, in terms of both sports and culture, what is the philosophy and motto of CUT 2019?

[Matteo Matteuzzi]: In our area it is known that those who come to Chianti once, return for their whole life, almost dependent. With this second edition we want to improve still under the organizational aspect. Our motto is #RUNCHIANTIDREAM, because Chianti makes you dream!


[Advendure]: The collaboration with New Balance for the 2019 edition of the race is certainly something of great importance. Tell us a few things about this new collaboration, but also regarding any other organizational changes and additions that we’ll see in the upcoming Chianti Trail Ultra 2019.

[Matteo Matteuzzi]: We had the great opportunity to collaborate with New Balance, since this year we are proposing - in addition to the race - sports weekends with material tests in exclusive locations in the Chianti area, and we will certainly do many other initiatives together. For the other sponsors, we have confirmed Bon for food supplements and there are other things we are working on. A big new development for this edition will be the EXPO. We will have a dedicated structure for the exhibition, bib numbers, prizes, a center of the event that we did not have last year.



[Advendure]: Are there any changes regarding the technical aspects of the three Chianti Trail Ultra 2019 races (73K, 37K, 15K), based on the conclusions of last year's event and the feedback from the participating athletes, or are they technically the same?

[Matteo Matteuzzi]: 99% of the route remained the same and we added a refreshment point around  km-20,  a real surprise for those who will stop, We modified a stretch to get to the 50-km rest and for the rest we pray for the weather, because the snow last year left us a lot of mud that we hope not to have in this year’s edition.


[Advendure]: When someone visits Tuscany and Chianti, definitely does not just stay on the sports part. Last year, Chianti Trail Ultra offered the highly successful ULTRA-WINE, as the area is famous for its wines. Are there also any parallel events in the 2019 edition for both runners and their families and friends?

[Matteo Matteuzzi]: Also for this edition we confirmed the ULTRA WINE, that had a great success last year and we want to reach higher numbers. We have the only sensory museum of wine in the world, we want it to be visited and known by everyone, and for those who want it can deepen the wine making with a small sommelier course! We are working on something else for 2020.



[Advendure]: Chianti Trail Ultra 2018 was very successful, with 680 participants from 22 countries. The registrations for the 2019 edition started on September 1st. Are you satisfied from the number of participants so far? Are we going to see any elite trail runners running on the Chianti trails?

[Matteo Matteuzzi]: The first edition went beyond our expectations, we closed the registrations one month in advance for overbooking. Today we already have 21 registered nationalities and a 15% registrations more than last edition, which is very satisfied! We are in contact with several elite athletes, but we still have no official confirmation, so we wait.


[Advendure]: The organization offers - for the 2019 edition of the race - all-inclusive packages for 2 or 3 nights’ accommodation in very good prices (with an additional 10% discount for Advendure friends). It will be great if you share with us more information regarding this offer that you start with the Chianti Trail Ultra 2019.

[Matteo Matteuzzi]: We are very happy with this collaboration; we also try to give an excellent service for those coming from abroad. Our area is certainly not cheap for overnight stays, so we are committed to offering pleasant and appealing solutions at an excellent price, we hope that be appreciated, and then it is an excuse to thoroughly explore this wonderful territory.



[Advendure]: “Molto Fango – a lot of mud” are the words that characterized the race trails in 2018, in addition to the Chianti nature that slowly entered spring. As we’re approaching the second edition of Chianti Trail Ultra, do you believe that the selection of the end of March as the race date provide additional value to its success?

[Matteo Matteuzzi]: During the last 5 years March 2018 was the coldest. It snowed 3 days before the race, something that we did not expect, but it can happen. We expect the seasons to return normal and offer spring temperatures and dry paths. We do not think to move the date, April in Chianti is a month too hot to run an Ultra race.


[Advendure]: Are you satisfied with the support of the local community, both in terms of volunteers and sponsors, as well as from the support of the runner’s effort from the local residents? We must not forget that Tuscany is famous – as one of the most popular travel destinations - for many other things, but not until last year for mountain running. Do you see, as we’re approaching the second year of the race, a positive change in Chianti's "running culture", as it was happened in other emblematic places of our planet after the organization of ultra-trail races?

[Matteo Matteuzzi]: Surely there is a change, but we are at the beginning. We can’t say satisfied, we can do much more. We have shown to our population that Chianti is an optimal location for mountain running and we can do a lot, much more , we have very important projects in the drawer, we must continue to believe and hope that this message arrives in the right way to our population to understand the real potential of this event.



[Advendure]: Following on from the previous question, would you like to tell us a few things about the main sponsors and supporters of Chianti Trail Ultra 2019?

[Matteo Matteuzzi]: The main sponsors of Chianti Trail Ultra are undoubtedly New Balance and Born Italia, with these two companies there is a perfect harmony, our objectives and working methods are really very similar and this translates into a great desire to do stuff, together. This year begins a new collaboration with RURAL, a very important local company. Last but not least, Chianti Live, a local tour operator that deals with the promotion of the territory and the tourist offer, and all the promotion for the Chianti Trail Ultra. We must thank all our sponsors but also the municipal administration of Radda in Chianti that allows us all this, and also all the associations and volunteers, because without them all this would not be possible.



[Advendure]: I remember that in your last year's interview that we published in Advendure, you provided us with a taste of your future plans and your aspirations to add an ultra-trail race that will exceed 100K in length. Is this ambition still remains, or after last year's highly successful experience you think that the races that already included in Chianti Trail Ultra are enough?

[Matteo Matteuzzi]: The dream is in the drawer, and even something more, the path is practically ready, but we will do it when the territory is ready and it is not yet. The route is about 120 km, touches all the historical points of Chianti, more than a race is a journey through history ... but we'll tell you better soon


[Advendure]: Closing this interview, what is your vision for Chianti Trail Ultra in the future, having already the experience of the first year? Does you initial plan remains the same?

[Matteo Matteuzzi]: I must say that given the confirmation of the first edition the plan is confirmed, everything is going in the right way so we must continue on this path. Who will make the difference will be our population, if you react positively we will do great things



[Advendure]: Thank you very much for the interview. See you in the beautiful Radda in Chianti!


Dimitrios Troupis

Δημήτρης Τρουπής

Κατάγεται από το Ξυλόκαστρο Κορινθίας και ζει μόνιμα στην Πάτρα. Συμμετείχε στην συντακτική ομάδα του Adventure Zone από το 2009, ενώ μαζί με τον Τάκη Τσογκαράκη ίδρυσαν και "τρέχουν" το Advendure.  Το τρέξιμο στα μονοπάτια των βουνών και η μεταφορά εικόνων και συναισθημάτων μέσα από τα άρθρα του αποτελεί αναπόσπαστο κομμάτι της ζωής του. Παθιάζεται με τους αγώνες ορεινού τρεξίματος, υπεραντοχής και  περιπέτειας. Έχει πολλές συμμετοχές και διακρίσεις σε αγώνες ορεινού τρεξίματος όλων των αποστάσεων, με έμφαση στους αγώνες ultra trail.  Θεωρεί ότι το τρέξιμο και η πεζοπορία στη φύση είναι μια εσωτερική ανάγκη του ανθρώπου, μας φέρνει πιο κοντά σε αυτήν και μας κάνει να αγαπήσουμε περισσότερο το περιβάλλον.


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