In April next year, 40 participants will take part in the Highland Kings Ultra, which has been dubbed the world’s most luxurious ultrarun. It is a challenge like no other that includes a 120-mile, four-day run across the stunning wilderness of Scotland’s west coast. But that’s where its similarity with all other ultramarathons ends.
Over the past eighteen months, the great outdoors has become the saviour of many. People have embraced what is regarded as the world’s greatest luxury and have discovered that one of the best ways to switch off from the world’s problems is with some outdoor exercise.
If you’re physically able to, one of the most rewarding of all the outdoor exercises is running as not only does it make you fitter, it also brings with it an amazing euphoric feeling known as the “runners high”. With so much available to everyone on their doorsteps, is there anything more that can make the outdoor running experience better? Yes, and it comes in the form of the Highland Kings Ultra, which takes outdoor running to a whole new level.
Race like a Warrior, Recover like a King
The Highland Kings Ultra is a challenge quite unlike any other. Participants in the ultrarun will be treated to the very best world-class preparation, extravagant service and personalised aftercare. This includes butler service, gourmet food prepared by Michelin star chef Alan Murchison, lavish accommodation, speedboat transfers and seven months of personal mentoring by some of the biggest names in the sport. They will also benefit from onsite masseurs and a purpose-built athletes’ lounge (below). Every minutia has been considered.
Named after Scottish kings Kenneth McAlpin, Alexander III and Robert the Bruce, who helped to shape the region, the event will culminate with a gala dinner hosted by legendary explorer Sir Ranulph Fiennes at Scotland’s historic Brodick Castle.
Organiser Primal Adventures, which has been running luxury wilderness experiences since 2014, said the ultra-marathon will be a truly unique experience.
“We wanted to create something really special,” said ex-Special Forces operative and Highland Kings Ultra founder Matt Smith.
A closer look at the Highland Kings Ultra
The Highland Kings Ultra will combine the physical and mental challenges of an ultra-marathon with the ultimate in luxury and extravagance.
Set against the stunning backdrop of Scotland’s rugged west coastline, the event will be the first of its kind anywhere in the world.
In the months leading up to the event, runners will get access to the world’s best athletes like reigning world champion Jon Albon, giving them access to world-class advice, coaching, testing and mentoring to prepare them for a true physical challenge.
Participants at the Highland Kings Ultra will be pushed to their absolute limit on the run but will then get the chance to relax and enjoy a range of the finest festivities and activities each night.
The exclusive event has also become one of the most talked-about of its kind this year. Costing £15,499 to enter, the price tag won’t suit every budget. The Highland Kings Ultra has clearly been designed for those who want to tackle a real physical challenge but prefer to do it in style and unwind with the finer things in life.
“It is not for everyone,” Smith said. “There are many other events that follow the traditional aspects of ultrarunning – and we think that is fantastic. But what we are providing is something different.
“We are not trying to change the face of ultras. We simply want to offer an experience that combines our passions for the Scottish outdoors and running with the ultimate in comfort, relaxation and recovery.”
The food will not only be of the highest quality, Michelin star chef Alan Murchison will also be working with leading sports scientists and fuelling experts to ensure athletes at the Highland Kings Ultra get to enjoy meals that deliver the perfect nutritional balance for the next day’s running.
Ahead of the event, world champion ultrarunner Jon Albon is among the experts providing bespoke coaching to entrants from October this year to ensure they are in prime physical and mental condition.
“Whether a fun runner or a more serious athlete, this is a great opportunity for people to really challenge themselves and see what they are made of,” Jon said.
“The level of detail that’s gone into the experience from the build-up and during the event itself is simply incredible.”
The participants’ progress during the seven-month training regime will also be monitored and supported by leading experts and nutritionists, including Andy Blow, one of the world’s leading authorities in sports hydration at Precision Hydration.
Smith added: “We have found there are many people who enjoy the challenge of an ultrarun but prefer to end their day with a bit of luxury and relaxation thrown in.
“The athletes will not only have great accommodation, but also onsite masseurs, physios and hydro pools to recover; food prepared by Michelin Star chefs and butler service to top off the next level experience delivered by the event.
“No other event we have found goes to this level of detail to deliver such a premium experience around an ultra-run. It’s going to be truly special.”
It appears that the Highland Kings Ultra has hit on a successful new concept, with a quarter of places on this exclusive ultrarun already secured.
And with Primal Adventures revealing there have been enough “significant enquiries” to more than fill all 40 spots, booking early is highly recommended.
For more information, visit www.highland-kings.com.
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