AVP 501 –  Just when you thought that Italian trail races couldn’t get any longer, what with epic Tor Des Géants® offering a route that’s approximately 330km long, 2018 will see the first edition of the the AVP501 Endurance Trail.

And yes“501” refers to the kilometers that you’ll be doing in the race. If you’re a fan of big numbers, well, then how about 30.000m D+ for a meaty race profile?

And we’ve done the conversions for you – that’s 311 miles with 98.425ft elevation.
AVP501 Endurance trail img credit: race organisation
AVP501 Endurance trail img credit: race organisation

So Where Does the AVP501 Endurance Trail Take Place?

Set on Italy’s Long Distance Hiking Path the “Alta Via Dei Parchi” – which translates to – “The Park’s High Route”, the AVP501km Endurance trail is a point to point race.

Le Marche, Tuscany and Emilia-Romagna

Much of the race route runs along the borders of the well known Italian regions of Le Marche, Tuscany and Emilia-Romagna – and if you haven’t heard of the last region, that’s the region that puts the delicious Parma Ham, Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese and bubbly Lambrusco wine onto our tables, and the Ferraris, Lamborghinis and Ducatis onto our roads. The AVP501 Endurance trail starts at Pennabili, in Rimini – on the eastern side of Italy, and proceeds westwards ending in Berceto, Parma.

Apennines Glorious Apennines!

The race route, at 501k, as you can imagine, covers an enormous amount of Italian natural wonders. Following Italy’s northern Apennine mountain range, the AVP501 crosses two of Italy’s National Parks: the “National Tuscan-Emilian Apennine Park” and the “Casentinesi Forests National Park”, plus one interregional park and five regional parks.

AVP501 Endurance trail img credit: race organisation
AVP501 Endurance trail img credit: race organisation

What Can I Expect?


You’ll be moving through a rich and varied landscape of clear glacial lakes, weathered grasslands and blueberry moors. You’ll be passing through deep ancient forests and traversing lively, transparent streams. Making your way over dusty gullies and stretches of craggy volcanic rocks.

The AVP501 will accompany you up to many summit plateaus where you can rejoice in heart-stirring views across the Mediterranean Sea. Let dusk be your counsellor, and amber streaked sunsets your warmth. Let the company of twinkling stars befriend you throughout the solace of the night. Come dawn be invigorated by newfound vitality and embrace the gift of sunlight.

Let Time be your Friend

8 Days and 8 nights to listen to the winds whisper about the past and the present, as you come across traces of rural life, working farms, stone huts and shelters.

Encounter everyday Italian life as you cross villages and hamlets, yet tread through the echoes of history if you choose to linger by the monasteries, chapels and castles that you’ll encounter along your epic journey.

We’ve written a guide to places which are linked to spirituality which you can read here, and also a guide on the AVP’s mountains here.

AVP501 Endurance trail img credit: race organisation
AVP501 Endurance trail img credit: race organisation

AVP501 – Behind the Scenes…

It’s taken years of meticulous planning to bring the event to life. Co-Race Director Elio Piccoli, is no novice when it comes to organising trail running events. President of Lupi d’Appennino Sports Club which hosts 9 trail races per year, including the legendary “The Abbots Way Ultra Trail”, first had the idea to stage an ultra trail along the “Alta Via Dei Parchi” Long Distance Path, over 7 years ago.

A Man with a Plan

He told ItalyOnTrail.com that he spent years pouring over maps and carrying out research regarding the environment. Along with countless trips, walks and runs, exploring the epic route.

“I first contacted the region of Emilia Romagna regarding the possibility to hold an Endurance event on the Alta Via Dei Parchi, way back in 2011,” he told us. “The idea came to me at the same time the Region officially designated the Long Distance Trail. It really inspired me to create an event that could in some way honour the region’s grand design.”

Working as a Team

Piccoli together with Co-Race Director Fabrizio Foglia, both admit that the project has taken up an enormous part of their lives but maintain that they’ve always remained positive regarding the outcome. “It’s a massive responsibility, but we’ve got a great team that includes people of utmost professional standing,” adds Piccoli. “I’m really excited and passionate regarding the AVP501 Endurance Trail. And we’re ready to give it our best, and make sure that runners have a fantastic experience.

AVP501 – Summary and Facts

  • Race starts at Pennabilli (Rimini) on Saturday 1st of September 2018 at 8.00 am
  • Race finishes at Berceto (Parma) on Saturday 9th September 2018 at 16.00 pm
  • 40 aid stations and 7 life bases
  • Cut off time is 200 hours (equal to 8 days and 8 hours),
  • Shuttle services to race start and accommodation is available pre-race start.
  • Race registration is open from 1st of March 2018 and closes on 15th July 2018
  • Maximum limit of 400 runners.
  • 500 volunteers

AVP501 – Downloads and Links

Download AVP501 race rules in English (PDF) AVP501-Race-Rules-ENG

For more details see the AVP501 race websitein English

Register for the AVP501 Endurance event

More info about the Long Distance Path – Alta Via Dei Parchi – in English

ItalyOnTrail.com’s guide to The Parco Nazionale Appennino Tosco-Emiliano

The Abbots Way Ultra Trail 

Maria E. BelliniMaria Elisabetta Bellini is Italyontrail.com’s founder, born in the U.K, she came to running whilst living in Italy, where she still lives and trains. Never ceasing to marvel at what’s at the summit of a hill, or around the bend along the trail, she loves using trail running as a means to explore nature, contemplation and Italy.