“What Runners Really Want”

Monday, February 4, 2019

Unusual but achievable… Run Larapinta August 2019, Alice Springs. The trail running stage race that, “literally knocks the air from your lungs” Sam Maffett, General Manager, Rapid Ascent.   

Rapid Ascent is excited to announce the four-day Run Larapinta Stage Race will run from 16 - 19 August, 2019. The event has become a drawcard for both recreational and elite runners (and more recently the Bondi Rescue team!). The trail takes in some of the most spectacular sections of the iconic Larapinta Trail in Australia's Northern Territory.

On offer again are two different course lengths—The Malbunka long course features stages of 20km - 45km each day and The Namatjira stages between 11km and 30km.

160 runners competed in 2018. 140 of them ran all four stages with the remainder doing single stages. It was a 50:50 split on male and female runners with 33% running the Malbunka leg and 67% the Namatjira stage. Runners start together and most stay together at the same hotel. This ensures an unforgettable bond with fellow runners is forged.

“It is fair to say Run Larapinta is far more a running experience than a race. Yes, you can bench yourself against your compatriots and race for a place, but far more people will be in it for the (incredible) experience of running through this timeless landscape”, says Sam Maffett.  

The Run Larapinta Stage Race is designed for all running types seeking a challenge in a spectacular part of the world.

“You do not need to be an elite runner, nor a runner with a long list of ultra-marathon race finishes to your name… you just need to be an active person who is willing to chip away at the course and keep moving from start to finish” according toMaffett.

But if you want it to be tough, then it is likely to be one of the biggest challenges you’ll ever face as a trail runner. Participants doing the longer Malbunka stages will rack up more than 130kms of running in four days. All the way from Alice Springs to Glen Helen and everything in-between.

Run Larapinta was first held in 2015 when 78 runners took part. More than 150 runners are expected to blaze the red centre in 2019—the 5th edition of the event. The event is shadowed by The Redback MTB Stage Race, held the following week.

For more information about the Run Larapinta Stage Race or to enter head to


When: Friday 16th to Monday 19th, 2019
Where: Larapinta Trail in the MacDonnell Ranges, Alice Springs, Northern Territory, Australia
What:  A 4-day, 4-stage trail running race along the most spectacular sections of the Larapinta Trail with two course distance options:

The Malbunka (the longer course):

  • Stage 1: 19km around Alice Springs to the Old Telegraph Station
  • Stage 2: 41km from Simpson’s Gap to Standley Chasm
  • Stage 3: 29km from Ochre Pits to Ormiston Gorge
  • Stage 4: 45km from Redbank Gorge to Mt Sonder and Glen Helen

The Namatjira (the shorter course):

  • Stage 1: 11km around Alice Springs to the Old Telegraph Station
  • Stage 2: 20km from The Old Hamilton Downs Station to Standley Chasm
  • Stage 3: 22km from Glen Helen to Ormiston Gorge via Ormiston Pound
  • Stage 4: 30km from Redbank Gorge to and Glen Helen

Find out more at

Instagram: @rapidascent
Twitter: @Rapid_Ascent
Tag: #RunLarapinta

Media Information

Media passes are available to accredited journalists and photographers and entitle you to be positioned in a cordoned-off area immediately behind the finish line.

To apply for a media pass on race weekend or to simply enquire about access to editorial and photos, please contact Rapid Ascent on 03 5261 5511.

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