Here’s an absolutely fabulous moment. Here comes Mira Rai from a tiny village in Bhojpur barreling into a tiny village in Italy. She completed the 56.9km distance in 6h36’30”, five minutes ahead of second women Silvia Rampazzo, and finishing in 11th position overall, some 50 minutes behind the leading man. The course had 3700m of height climb and descent and she broke the women’s course record by around half an hour. Not bad for her second race! 

mira rai finishing sellaronda 56km

For those who know about Mira, here’s a bit of background about how she got here….

As you might know, Mira Rai did get to Italy with visa’d passport in hand just 6 hours before the flight and then directly enjoyed 12 hours delay in Dubai.

She did finally arrive and since has been having a great time being looked after by YogaxRunner Tite Togni. The idea behind this journey is that it is something like a short course at a University of Trail Running for Mira. In Nepal access to coaching is limited, and races are small meaning developing racing skills is limited. To improve, you have to go outside of Nepal.

It’s been a lot about good timing – she arrived to witness the UTMB races and see Samir Tamang take second in the TDS. If you have been to the UTMB, a running festival centered in Chamonix, France, where thousands run big distances in the mountains, you know that that experience would give a young runner from Nepal a pretty good introduction to what trail racing is or can be.

Since then she’s been training hard with pro-guidance, and run all over the Dolomites thanks to Igor from Holimites (click that link! they run super multi-day running trips there). This has been a perfect warm up to her first race outside Nepal (Sellaronda), and only her second 50km distance race.

The good news is that she finished as first female in this race, which happens to be the Italian Skyrunning Federation championships ultra distance event.

From here, the next race is the Trail d’Eglieroi on 30th of September. A new lesson this time with 80km distance in a beautiful setting.

In the meantime, so well deserved rest, relaxation and yoga for runners.

Mira says “So so thank you!” to all those who contributed to the fund to get her to Italy.

You can contribute to that programme here.

Excellent photos courtesy of Video too:

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