2019 has been a big year for Jacob Adkin in more than one way.

Firstly, the 23-year-old won his first major championship title, when he took gold in the European Mountain Running Championships in both the individual race and the team event.

And secondly, Adkin has begun to attract recognition for both his sport, which has perennially been overshadowed by track and field, and for himself outwith the bubble of athletics. Having been nominated for Team Scotland’s Male Athlete of the Year alongside world champion boxer Josh Taylor and Olympic medallist swimmer Duncan Scott, Adkin followed that with a nomination for Scottish Athletics’ Athlete of the Year, in the company of the likes of Laura Muir and Callum Hawkins.

These accolades will be far from Adkins’ mind today though, as he makes his assault on the World Mountain Running Championships in Villa La Angostura, Argentina.

And having been in such good form this year, the Scot is looking forward to getting on the start line.

“I’m pretty excited – this event is in a very different place from the kinds of venues it normally is so it’s really exciting to be able to explore a new place like this,” he said.

“The course is a bit longer than the usual kind of course so I’ll just see when I get there what it’s like. Usually, for these races, you do a couple of laps up and down whereas for this one, it’s once up and then back down so it’ll be a bit of a different mindset.

“I’ve been training for that longer hill but also being ready for the long downhill because you really need to concentrate on that or you’ll trip. I’m looking forward to the longer course though because you can go all out to the top knowing you don’t have to go up it again.”

Adkin is reluctant to set an definitive targets but having finished in sixth position in last year’s World Championships, he is likely to be in the mix for a podium spot. However, with tactics playing a significant part in these races, Adkin, who hails from Edinburgh, knows there will be no time to relax.

“I think a lot of people will go off pretty quick but you do need to save a bit for the downhill or else your legs will be shaking like mad. And you need to have your head screwed on for the way down too,” he said.

“It’ll be interesting to see what kind of tactics are used. A lot can change in a race like this and if you have a wee bit in reserve, you can respond to any attacks. I’m not a quick starter, I like staying a little bit back and seeing what goes on at the front and then working my way through. So hopefully that’ll work well with the long uphill.”

Adkin is coached by Commonwealth Games marathon medallist, Robbie Simpson, but being based in the Lake District means the pair do less face-to-face sessions than he would like.

Simpson may be best known for his Commonwealth Games exploits but he is also a highly decorated mountain runner and there are few better sources of advice for Adkin as he works his way through the ranks.

Simpson is not part of the GB team travelling to Argentina but Adkin will have plenty of familiar company, in the shape of his fellow Scot, Andrew Douglas, who won the Mountain Running World Cup earlier this summer, as well as Charlotte Morgan.

The standard of mountain running in Scotland is exceptionally high at the moment and Adkin admits it has been a delight to see the strength-in-depth of his sport get better and better in recent years. And that trend only looks to continue.

“It’s been great to see how many people are getting into the sport– the standard has improved in the past few years too,” he said.

“There’s a lot of races going on which helps. And since hill running has got more exposure, it’s encouraged more people to go along to the races and from there, it’s brought the standard up.

“And it’s great to think that we might have helped inspire a few others to get into it. It’s such a good sport and it’s really fun and I think if we keep getting that message out, it’ll bring even more people to the sport.”