Bad Cow Frolic Mara #239 Ultra #76
50K in 6:49:30
|Aid station including cider|
This was actually a 12hr event but from early doors it was decided that after 50K I would stop. I didn't need a 12 hr event and it left something in the day. Being a 12hr event it started at 7:30am and would run through to 7:30pm (or be on your last lap by 7:30pm).
The event was run by White Star running. My last experience with them at the Invader marathon last summer wasn't great and I am happy to report that things were back to normal and it was a perfectly organised event.
|Busy start at 7:30am|
I picked up Brenda at 5am and we headed towards Dorset. Past Bournemouth and Poole we turned towards the coast at Wareham and when we got to Corfe Castle (very impressive) we soon arrived at Burnbake Farm where the event was being held. Apart from a GPS malfunction that brought us down some dodgy roads it was well signposted and easy to find. There was camping the night before and despite a damp start many had decided to stay. The bar tent and coffee van were in full swing. A very smooth registration and a witty as always race brief and we were walked to the start.
The event was on a 4.4 mile loop with the "love station" at approx 2.5 miles and a ultra table and extra water and isotonic drinks available at the start finish. The love station had everything that you would ever need including coke and sausages, cake and sweets. It even had cider and allegedly vodka. There was no need to bring anything.
The course was surprisingly hilly being around 1800ft over marathon distance. 6 laps for a marathon and 7 for an ultra. It was always going to be ultra today. Along side the solo runners there were many relay teams of 2,3,4 or more runners. This was day 1 of a 2 day festival with a marathon due on Sunday.
The Lap 1 start (I presume to avoid congestion) was slightly different but in general you started off through a twisty forest section for around 400m before a quick sharp climb up a tarmac hill before hitting the trails. Another short sharp hill brought us through the first gate which led to the boggy part of the course. Tip toeing around the bog led to the first short climb which for me was walked every lap. Cresting we had a long sandy downhill that turned right to a long sandy drag up hill. Many took the opportunity to build sandcastles on this section. Cresting there was a long flat section that crossed a road and continued flat for around 800m. Eventually this gave way to a concrete road that had a sharp up hill to the second gate of the route.
|Squeaky toy for Ivy|
This led to a long drag up hill via a forest trail that when navigated crossed another road and the love station. Refreshed we kept climbing on boggy trails before a long sweeping downhill (Puddle jumping) back to the forest. We then skirted the forest and its holiday homes (with many girlies in their jacuzzi's) before entering the final twisty bit back in the forest which brought us back to the start finish area. Going under the timing gantry we started it all again.
Weather was pretty much perfect but on the chilly side.
|Both 50K today|
With all of the relay runners it was impossible to tell where you were but there didnt seem to be any super fast runners there today. I was surprised to learn winning male and female did 14 laps or 100k. There were a lot went ultra.
I managed each of the first 5 laps in under an hour with my marathon lap just on the hour for a very pedestrian 5:40 marathon. On my ultra lap I walked and chatted a lot and came in on 6:49.
Brenda followed soon after also having done ultra. Brenda had decided if she was under 6 hrs for marathon she would go ultra. Marathon was complete in 5:59:55.
|The marathon table|
A very nice medal, squeaky toy and choice of Dorset biscuits and a bad cow buff was a nice finish. As well as of course a big White Star hug at the finish.
I didnt know too many at this run which is always the case when I go west but it was good to meet Sharon Daw. Steve (who got his GMC medals today including 250 in 250) from Rik who was in the area with his family.
I really enjoyed today and it was great value and a lot of people going marathon or ultra for the first time given the 12hr time limit.
A 1hr 30 drive back had us back before 5 and I got introduced to Brenda's marathon table.
Stats for today
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