Latest posts by WackyRacer

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Transvulcania 2014

Posted: 19/05/2014 at 18:26

Great, glad to hear you are having another crack at the 100.

We are moving down just off the South Downs soon so if you are heading down for recce runs or racing, let me know. Will be too late for this time round but give me a shout if you plan on heading that way in the future.

Best of luck and looking forward to following your progress.

Transvulcania 2014

Posted: 19/05/2014 at 13:58

Thanks Ultra Shaz. Was half expecting to see you as you normally appear somewhere in most of my races

Enjoyed the experience but not sure it was my best idea as need to get my knee sorted out properly. NDW100 is next but probably won't run it unless I can get back to some kind of sensible training as don't fancy struggling on that one.

What have you got on this year?

Transvulcania 2014

Posted: 18/05/2014 at 18:41

If you look for the very last head torch right at the back you can probably see me lol

Great pics... amazing views above the cloud line

Transvulcania 2014

Posted: 17/05/2014 at 12:33

Well done to you too shawk. I fumbled through in 15:31 but I think around 11-12 hours may be a good time for me if properly prepared. Not sure I would want to try and go any quicker than that as am always trying to protect my weak ankle on such technical terrain. (normally I run anything technical with a fairly rigid ankle brace that prevents me from turning it but had to do without it on the day)

The congestion really was a big downer for me and I doubt it would have been much different unless running towards the front end of the race.

I found some of the organisation a little odd and in particular I felt sorry for those at the front of the shorter races having to try and fight their way through the massive ultra field!

The bag collection was also a complete mystery and I had to ask several people before I was pointed in the right direction. I was however very grateful to the lady who tended to my badly blistered feet.

I would definitely return for a training week to enjoy some amazing trail running without the crowds.

Transvulcania 2014

Posted: 17/05/2014 at 01:25

Post Race thoughts:

1, This really is a tough race but the length makes it manageable.

2, The terrain is unlike anything you will see back home and difficult to train for.

3, Your feet will hurt (even more so if you wear stupid trainers)

4, The crowd support is great but the crowds within the race are frustrating.

5, It could be hot.


This race seems to keep coming up as a bucket list race and it's easy to forget that it has only been run since 2009, however I will take special memories and views from the race.... just maybe I would like to forget the pain over the last 15 miles.

Would I run it again? The resounding opinion within our group was 100% never again straight afterwards but I am starting to think that maybe doing it properly prepared and fit would be good


Transvulcania 2014

Posted: 17/05/2014 at 01:10

(no idea what happened to the formatting in last post)

on to....


Race Day:

Thanks to not having changed the time on my phone, my alarm woke me at 1:30 so there I was sitting the worst prepared for any race had ever been, wondering what the hell I was doing.

We arrived at the start with plenty of time which was in hindsight a bad idea, it was blowing a hooley and freezing cold. We had a couple of hours to kill and it really was cold with people huddled in any available shelter desperately trying to stay warm. Everyone was putting on every single thing that they could find in their drop bag to stay warm. We ended up taking shelter in a spiky bush which was actually welcome relief from the wind.

A couple of nervous hours passed as we joked and tried to make light of the situation. Eventually someone noticed that we were now alone and the refugee camp had disappeared.

As we headed to the start line we were looking forward to actually warming up.

The start of the race was carnage and I have to admit that I hated the first couple of hours, not because of the steep sandy incline but rather the crowds and sitting in a big dust cloud. It wasn't until it started getting light and the crowds started easing a little around me that I started to appreciate the draw of the event. As I looked back towards the start, I could see that we were now above the clouds and it was a very special feeling.

For a while I really started to enjoy the race and as I hadn't been running for several weeks, it was fantastic to be able to enjoy running in such fantastic surroundings. My enjoyment continued for several hours and I didn't care about my time or my position... I was just happy to be running and hiking whilst looking around at the scenery.

Eventually my bubble burst and my lack of preparation caught up with me.

The downhill section is tough, really tough! You spend so long climbing and looking forward to the downhill section only to find that when it arrives, the climbs weren't actually that bad after all. My trainers were the worst choice ever (not really a choice) and on the long decent they really started to hamper me. After a while, every single footstrike was agony. To be honest, I have never known so much pain in an ultra but I carried on gingerly towards my medal.


Transvulcania 2014

Posted: 17/05/2014 at 00:40

Ok, ended up doing the race and it deserves a decent write up so here goes....


1, I was traveling with no intention of running the race. 2, To ensure that I was not drawn into running the race, I did not take my kit with me. 3, I was planning to use the trip to gently ease back in with a couple of short runs after 6 weeks out with injury. This meant that I did have a pair of running shorts, a running top and a pair of trainers (NB 110's) that I had previously used for a muddy park run and figured may be ok for the trails. 4, In my normal abject injury phase, I had managed to pile on a stone in weight through a combination of dodgy food ad too much beer.   The night before we were to fly, we stayed the night with my brother as he is closer to the airport and we could then share a taxi in the morning. There was to be 8 of us in the group sharing an apartment and 6 of us had actually entered the race some time before. As we sat around and enjoyed an evening meal, it became apparent that I might be the only one not taking part in the race.... It didn't take long for me to buckle and I was now seriously considering how best to tackle the race.   1, Shorts and shirt - Check 2, Trainers - Check (not exactly ideal but they are designed for trail running so how bad could they be right) 3, Hydration - Hmmmm I was using an Omm 20 pack as my hand luggage, added to which a couple of empty powerade bottles would complete my high-tech hydration solution. - Check 4, Head torch - Oh bugger.... thankfully my brother who was not running said I could borrow his - check 5, Insurance - Someone mentioned specific race insurance but I always travel with insurance that covers me for stupid things so I figured this would cover it - Check 6, Race disclaimer - I only found out about this on the flight due to having no race prep due to no plans to actually run it. Hopefully they would have copies at registration for me to complete. 7, Race nutrition - Hmmmm I figured I'd just pick up a big bag of haribo and peanut m&m's at the airport - Check   So as hard as I tried I couldn't find a reason to not run the race. Just take it nice and easy and keep a comfortable effort level and as long as my knee didn't get too painful... I'd still be able to pick up my medal.   After a grueling 3 flight journey, we landed at La Palma in the fading evening light. This was my first wake up call. This was definitely a mountain race, a fact that was confirmed as our hire car slowly edged up and up and up and up, heading towards our apartment on the other side of the island. Lots of wide eyes and talk of how long it might take to run to the top given that it had taken about half an hour to drive it!!   The next day was the vertical kilometre so a good opportunity to check out the event and I even managed to get photo with Kilian My strict race prep meant that I had to stick with the regime that had got me to the island with no kit, this meant that it was time for beer and with some of our group stuck halfway up the VK course until the race was over.... I had plenty of beer time ahead.   A few more beers went down on the friday night and I was all set. I set my alarm for 2:30 which gave me about 4 hours sleep.....

Transvulcania 2014

Posted: 25/04/2014 at 14:59

Good luck and just enjoy the sights and sounds

Pesky knees....

Transvulcania 2014

Posted: 25/04/2014 at 11:33

Must admit that I hadn't even spotted that before shawk!

Wouldn't have made much difference to me anyway as injury means that I will now be cheering you on from the side. Looking forward to making it a nice holiday instead. Hoping that I might at least be capable of a little light hiking or maybe even jogging by then to make the most f it.


Posted: 16/01/2014 at 00:19

I'd already entered the NDW100 as a backup because I really enjoyed it last year and I have Transvulcania to look forward to as well. UTMB can wait and it will give me another 18 months to get plenty of elevation into my legs

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