For me this race is like no other, I have done it every year since 1997!
And I think that just sums this race up, it is totally unmissable, which is saying something for a race with a ridicules distance. Where ever else would anyone want to run a race that is 13.875 miles and this year as a bridge was damaged 16.7 miles? The distance and times are totally irrelevant, it is all about the enjoyment of running round Coniston Water, enjoying the atmosphere and the scenery.
The Chicago Marathon was not just a favourite race because it was my fastest marathon but everything about the holiday was great. A brilliant holiday with my wife Yuk-Lam, fantastic hotel, perfect weather, went up both the Sears tower and the John Hancock Center, the hotel arranged a stretched Limo to the start, and it finished with a PB in Grant Park. I would love to return one day and do it all over again.
Over the years I have done a good handful of fell races but this one is very special. I think a lot is to do with the fact that it is the highest mountain in Wales and therefore a peak people want to conquer but it is much more than that. The town of Llanberis comes alive for the event, there is a real buzz in the air, it even gets some international competitors, the whole day has the feel of a marathon event. If you have done a marathon you will know what I mean. The race limit is 500, I think it is because it is quite a dangerous race especially with the runners coming down using the same path as the ones still going up and don’t forget there are walkers on it at the same time! The race limit coupled with the fact there is minimum criteria to enter makes it sort of select and even more special. It’s an extremely tough race 5 miles straight up and then 5 miles straight back down, a real runner’s test and achievement when you have done it!
Gin Pit 5
This race, compared to the others is very low key but a favourite one of mine for several reasons. It is run on the trails near my home and I love running on the these trails, really pleasant and traffic free, it is organized by my running club, it is a very friendly race and I know many of the participants. Yuk-Lam runs it and there is also a fun run which my kids can do! All in all, it is just a cracking little 5 mile race. If you are in the area come along!