|Mt. Kinabalu, Sabah , Malaysia|
The new 23km route will require runners to race from Kinabalu Park up the mountain until Layang-Layang Hut. They will then go down the Mesilau trail before descending to Kundasang town at the foothill of the mountain.
Billed as the world’s toughest mountain race, it is aimed at testing the endurance of competitors by running up and down Mount Kinabalu.
State Tourism, Culture and Environment Minister Datuk Masidi Manjun said next year’s competition would be known as Mount Kinabalu International Climbathon: Adventure Series.
Come Oct 22 to 23, the 25th edition of the climbathon will be the final time that participants run the traditional 21km route up and down the 4,095m mountain.
The present route requires participants to run from Timpohon Gate – the entry point to the summit trail – to the peak and back.
Explaining the new route, Masidi said it was time for an overhaul of the race.
The new route will be thrilling and challenging for the runners.
He said the state wanted the competition to be a sports tourism event instead of just a sporting activity.
Meanwhile, those intending to climb Mount Kinabalu have an option to wear a climber tracker device thanks to an agreement between Sabah Parks, Celcom and its business partner Xtend Services Sdn Bhd.
Celcom will provide 50 devices for a trial period of three months to gauge their efficiency.
Masidi said climbers would have peace of mind knowing that in the event of a mishap, rescuers would know where to find them.