Ridgeway 85 - 2012

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18/01/2012 at 10:58

Morning all,

I am struggling to find a thread for people to chat about preparations for this year's Ridgeway 85 in August.

I am very much an ultra-novice, with 26.2 being the furthest I've run to date, so I would be very interested to hear experiences / advice etc. from more experienced runners, or simply share the pain with other newbies!


18/01/2012 at 21:06

Jules, I did this one a few years back and its a cracking event. I might look at doing it this year, but have got a 100 in March to concentrate on for the time being. From what I recall it was a battle of two halves. The first was hilly and very hot, second was dark flatter and flipping wet!

really good event though,

18/01/2012 at 21:58

Hi mr f,

Sounds like you have a fair bit more experience than me -- any tips on building mileage gratefully received...

Good luck with your 100!

18/01/2012 at 23:20

I'll chat to anyone, anytime about this race!  It's my favourite event and I've done it for the last three years.  There's such a variety of types of countryside you're running through, including woods, fields, open hillside, golf courses, churchyards, and along the Thames in the dark. The night section over the Berkshire Downs seems to work well. 

The whole event is extremely well organised.  The checkpoints are always very friendly and have an astounding choice of food available, and really care about the runners.  In fact I can't praise this event enough.

It's certainly ideal for a first overnight event, but I'd try to get a couple of ultra races in before then in the 30-40 mile category.  Don't know if there are any in your area.  Or measure out some extra long offroad training runs testing out different kit options (especially shoes), food, etc.

The main thing is to go out steadily and just keep making forward progress.  The cut offs are not designed for walkers and you will need to keep up a reasonable pace until the Goring meal stop (44 miles).  After that the cut offs are more lenient.

That'll do for now.

20/01/2012 at 10:07

Cheers T Rex -- are you competing this year?

Had planned to run the Classic Quarter in June as a way of introducing myself to a proper ultra, but looks like this will coincide with a trip to Cuillin Ridge now... will definitely be getting some long runs in beforehand, including overnights.

20/01/2012 at 11:37

Cuillin Ridge - now there's a good run!!  Watch your footing, though.

Yes, I'll be running.  Would take a lot to prevent me entering.

20/01/2012 at 12:52

Hi T Rex,

After seeing you last year, I'm, thinking about it this year. I'm going to run the Ridgeway 40 in May, see how that goes......

So hopefully see you somewhere near Tring in August.

20/01/2012 at 15:02
There is the Ridgeway 40 in May which is a ldwa associated event but runners welcome.  A good intro to the Ridgeway and a really well organised event.  Details here.
Edited: 20/01/2012 at 15:03
20/01/2012 at 15:03
Whoops great minds....
20/01/2012 at 19:56

Chimney - I don't think the way I was progressing was particularly inspiring, was it??  You caught me texting Mrs T Rex instead of running up Smeathe's Ridge.  I did get going after that, honest.

It's Ivinghoe Beacon to be precise.  If you give ROs good notice they can arrange a pick-up from Tring station.

No Cuillin Ridge for you, then?  I expect you're an old hand at that.

20/01/2012 at 20:07

There is something majestic about the Cullin, followed by a few drams of 18yo Talisker. Not for your average home counties walker, an undertaken not to be underestimated............

T Rex, you inspire in so many ways, the movement from A to B is only part of it

Also Page 12 of The Trailrunner. And the back cover. How is he looking so fresh? Are they sure that photo wasn't taken at the start?

20/01/2012 at 22:07

I'm sure In Pin is straightforward enough as long as you've got stout shoes and a couple of jam sandwiches.

Looking for sub-21 hours this year.  Then I'll be able to inspire at least myself.

It's all down to getting the shoes right, which I haven't yet.

21/01/2012 at 05:19
You haven't tried the combination of flip-flops and clogs yet. That's the way to go.
22/01/2012 at 00:08

What, for In Pin or Ridgeway 85?

For first time this year I might go for a change to road shoes for the second half, certainly if it is dry.  Some of those downland tracks are very hard on your feet. 

23/01/2012 at 18:19
Have got the National Trail Guide for The Ridgeway; says it "can be walked comfortably in a week". Nothing about running it in 24 hours....

Trying not to think about the distance too much!
23/01/2012 at 18:20
PS not planning to run Cuillin -- going with a climbing club, so it'll be a hike. Might try to emulate the running photo in a recent Runners World -- looks like some good trails up there...
23/01/2012 at 20:15
jules - the people who write the books don't consider the less-than-comfortable 24-hour options!  I wouldn't think about the distance.  Break it down into the manageable chunks e.g. the distance between CPs.  Once you start treating it as "only 72 miles to go", etc it can dent the morale.
23/01/2012 at 22:50
Cheers, T Rex.

It's probably a bit early for details, but would you have a list of CP locations by any chance? I can't find anything on the TRA website...

24/01/2012 at 16:50
Sorry, can't help there.  Haven't kept an electronic copy of the race info from last year.  Can anyone else help out?  If not I'll type them out later.
25/01/2012 at 12:39

Morning all, I too have signed up to run the Ridgeway this year.  Crewed for my missus a few years ago when was injured and have been meaning to have a crack at it but other races have got in the way...not this year though 

I think these are the checkpoints jules:

CP1: 10.5 miles; Grid Reference 874071; Wellhead Farm on approach to Wendover where Ridgeway crosses Hale Road.

CP2: 16.8 miles; 823036; next to car park near Whiteleaf (just before Princes Risborough).

CP3: 24.5 miles; 741987; where Ridgeway crosses a minor road.

CP4: 31.7 miles; 683904; after field gate where Ridgeway crosses minor road to take road towards Swyncombe Church.

CP5: 43.7 miles; 598807; Goring Hall

CP6: 52.4 miles; 479840; Bury Down car park where Ridgeway crosses minor road.

CP7: 61.5 miles; 344851; Sparsholt Firs – car park

CP8: 69.4; 238818; 2145 to 0845; Charlbury Hill – junction of farm road and Ridgeway.

CP9: 79.9 miles; 157760; Near Barbury Castle - near car park and toilets.

Finish: 85miles; 101700; Avebury –  The Social Centre. 

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