Wednesday, 20 April 2011

Connemara Race Report

It has only been 2 weeks since the 100km Anglo Celtic Plate in Perth.I had planned on taking 10 days of complete rest to recover.But having received an invitation to run the connemarathon I decided to run it rather than race it and treat it as a training run.I had a very bad experience here last year and I was also hoping to banish those demons whilst "training"!I started out very easy knowing from experience what lay ahead in the second half of the race,going through half way in just under 1.25.The much hillier second half felt very comfortable because of the conservative start and I found myself passing struggling runners over the final 10k.I didn't have any expectations from this race only to better my performance of last years event(i had to walk last 10 miles last year!).Crossed the finish line in 2.51:16 in 3rd place.

Next up will be the IAU Trail World Championships in july(if selected),with maybe one or two shorter tune up races in between.So from now on the majority of my training volume will be done on forest trail.....the hillier the better!!

IAU Trail World Championships

The IAU Trail World Championships will take place in Connemara, Ireland on 9th July 2011.
Connemara is a spectacularly beautiful area in County Galway on the west coast of Ireland. The event will be operated in the area of Connemara National Park and its surrounding environs. See for information about the park.
Starting in the village of Letterfrack, the course will first traverse Diamond Hill, which consists of two circular loop trails conjoined in the middle in a figure eight fashion. There are switchbacks in the steeper sections of the hill and a large section of boardwalks along the lowlands for a cumulative distance of 7km. Diamond Hill reaches a height of 442 metres and rewards athletes with expansive panoramic views of all of the Connemara area, including the Twelve Ben Mountains, Kylemore Abbey and Kylemore Lough, which the runners will encounter later in the course.
Following their return from the Diamond Hill summit, athletes will run a loop of approximately 30km twice and encounter asphalt road, bog, conventional trail paths, streams, forest and mountains for a true trail run in nature. They will have to negotiate Benbaun Mountain twice, which has a summit height of 729 metres. It's undoubtedly a tough course that could well suit 100km runners, long distance mountain runners and 24 hour runners alike.

Diamond Hill, Connemara

Kylemore Abbey, Connemara

Kylemore Lough, Connemara

Cottage in Connemara

Top of Mountain in Connemara

Record Run at Anglo Celtic Plate

Ireland's Keith Whyte, John Byrne, John O'Regan, Thomas Maguire and Daniel Doherty
John Byrne led home a record breaking run by the Irish men's 100km team at the Anglo Celtic Plate (Home Nations) in Perth, Scotland on 27 March 2011.
A relative newcomer to ultrarunning, Byrne ran an incredible time of 7:09:33 to finish third in the individual competition behind Craig Stewart of Scotland (7:01:36) and Alan Smalls of England (7:04:54). It was the second fastest time in history by an Irishman.
Ireland's Daniel Doherty (7:19:29) and Keith Whyte (7:28:59) finished 6th and 7th, respectively, also posting qualifying times for the World 100km Championships in September. The trio ensured a new Irish 100km team record time of 21:58:01, eclipsing the record set by the Irish team that finished 5th at the European 100km Championships in 2007.
Team captain and Irish record holder Thomas Maguire was fourth Irish finisher on this occasion and fifth finisher John O'Regan set a PB over the 100km distance.
The performance also ensured second place behind Scotland (21:43:36) in a highly competiive team competition which saw Commonwealth Champions England finish 3rd.

John Byrne crosses finish line in 7:09:33

Daniel Doherty in action at Anglo Celtic Plate

Keith Whyte qualifying for World 100km