Google+ Running in Cork, Ireland

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Preview of the Cork BHAA 'Cork to Cobh' 15 mile Road Race - Sunday 5th Oct (9:30am) (Updated Thurs 2nd 11pm)
As far as I know, outside of the Marathon, this is one of the longest road races in the country. At 15 miles (24 kms), this is a tough race and a good challenge for many runners. It is often used by people in Cork and Munster as preparation for the Dublin City Marathon at the end of October. Note that there are a few changes this year so read on...

Course...(Updated Thurs 11pm) The start is next to York Hill on Summerhill North. We will run down the hill and then left past Patrick's church and then past the railway station and towards the Dunkettle roundabout. Last year, we ran down onto the roundabout and took the slip road for Glounthaune. This year, it's different!! We stay on the N25, we run over the Jack Lynch roundabout underneath. (Please note that we will have to run in front of 2 slip roads going down to the roundabout and the other one when it comes back up. Watch the traffic). Then we carry on and run on the hard shoulder for about another mile until we take the turn off left for Glounthaune, just before the bridge. Then we carry on as before....Down past the old Youghal Carpet plant and then take the bridge over the main road and head towards Fota, Belvelly bridge and on into Cobh. The finish is close to the main square in the centre of Cobh. Overall, there are a few small hills but nothing major. A big factor on this course can be the wind. You are basically running East for 8 miles and then South for another 6 miles before turning East again for the last mile. I remember running this many years ago when it was wet and there was a very strong Southerly wind. Miles 1 to 8 were fine but as soon as we turned South, the very wet t-shirt that I was wearing was pressed against my chest and I could really begin to feel the body temperature dropping ( the way, you should never wear a cotton t-shirt in a race! Wear a singlet and/or a thermal vest). So, watch the weather forecast closer to next weekend and keep an eye on the wind direction.

Entries.......(Updated Thurs 11pm) You can still enter this race on the day at the Montenotte Hotel. Cost is €20 and there is a free t-shirt included in this price. Note the start time is 9:30am so get there early! They will take entries up until 9:00am sharp. Last year, they got 600 for this event. If the weather is fine, expect to see as many again if not closer to 650-700. That's a lot of runners....give yourself plenty of time if you are entering on the day.

For directions on how to get to the Hotel, follow this LINK.

No MP3 players allowed!!!.........Now this is important. This is one busy road and it will NOT be closed for the race. It's not so bad for the first few miles when we are all bunched together and there is a hard shoulder to run in. But, it's a different story when you are passing Fota and get onto Great Island itself. There is no hard shoulder, the road is narrow enough and the field will have thinned out by then. You really need to be able to hear what's going on around you for this race. If you are thinking about wearing them, do everyone a favour....leave them at home.

Gear.......(Updated Thurs 11pm) For anyone who pre-entered, you should have got a tag with your race number in the post. If you enter on the day, the BHAA will provide tags in the Hotel for your bag. They will have a van/truck AT THE HOTEL to take all of the bags to Cobh. You can re-collect your bag in Cobh in the scout hall which is up behind the car park behind St.Coleman's Catheral. This is also where the refreshments and prizegiving will be.

Transport......Options - You probably have a few options in terms of transport...
1) Two cars...take 2 cars to Cobh, leave one in Cobh and drive up to Cork
2) Train...Well, not this year anyway!! They are doing some work on the line and there will be a bus service instead. The bus will leave the train station in Cobh for Cork City at 12:25, 1:35, 2:50, 4:25 and 5:30pm depending on long you want to stay around after the race. The fee is approx €5.

There is a bit more info about the cancelled train service HERE.

Distance...If this is your first time trying 15 miles, then be careful to pace it properly. It's very easy to go off too fast and get to the 10 mile mark near Belvelly bridge / Fota and find that you have run out of steam. Keep something in reserve until you hit the bridge. If you feel fine, then push on. If you are tired, then at least you have kept something to get you through the last 5 miles.

Race Options...For those of you doing the Dublin Marathon, your choice you treat Cork to Cobh as a training run or do you race it like you would a half marathon??? Some have told me that it is too close to the Marathon to race (3 weeks)....other have said it's not. What to do???
My opinion is that the Cork to Cobh race is an ideal opportunity to test out your Marathon pace. If you have a target in the Marathon, you should have a pace in mind. Say your target is 3:30 in the Marathon. That's 8 minute miling. Maybe you would like a little bit of cushion to fall back on so say 7:50 per mile...that's your Marathon pace. Do a 2 mile warm up on Sunday and then run to Cobh at your Marathon pace. If you get to Cobh exhausted, then you need to revise your Marathon pace. If you can run the 15 miles to Cobh and you feel like you could carry on ok, then surely that's a good sign for the Marathon. Only another 11 miles to go!! ;o)

Water Stations....(Updated Thurs 11pm) Last year, this was the info on the water stations...I presume it will be similiar this year...There will be 4 water stations out along the course. The approx locations are........... at 3.2 miles just after the Dunkettle Roundabout, at 7.0 miles by Glounthaune Boat Sales, at 10.3 miles which should be on the Cobh side of Belvelly bridge and at 12.8 miles which is at the Glenbrook/Carrigaloe Car Ferry.

...and finally - If you want to have a closer look at the course, click on this LINK

Here is the message sent out by the BHAA...
Montenotte Hotel - Cork to Cobh Road Race: All of the race numbers for entries received up to today, Tuesday 30th, have been posted. Race numbers for those who enter after today will have to be collected at race headquarters in the Montenotte Hotel on Sunday morning. Late entries (€20) will be accepted on Sunday morning, up to 9:00am (sharp). Changing facilities will be available at the Montenotte Hotel and gear will be transported to Cobh for participants. Please note that parking at Montenotte Hotel is limited. Anyone intending to walk should be at the start line at 8:30am.The race start line has been changed for this years event. The new start is on Summerhill North which is just a short distance from the original location on the Lower Glanmire Road.
In the interest of safety you are advised to run on the left hand side of the road at all times and the use of of headphones is forbidden. Please obey the stewards at all times. Refreshments and prizegiving will be in the Scout Hall in Cobh. As regards the return trip commonly taken by many back to Cork City, the usual rail service will not be in operation on Sunday next. However, a replacement bus service will be in place every 60 minutes on the half hour - fare €3.75.
Finally, an appeal for assistance. If you or any of your colleagues are not participating in the race, we would appreciate it if you could help us with stewarding, water stations etc. Please phone John Mohally at 4541384 or 087 9533798.....CORK BHAA COMMITTEE


"John,last year the baggage was collected in the penrose quay car park close to the start line(I was pre-registered so I don't know if this was also the resistration station)and brought from there to Cobh. Do you know if it is the same baggage collection point or will the vans be leaving from the Montenotte hotel?Thanks............Fergus "

"Fergus....I checked this out and the vans for the gear will ONLY be at the Montenotte Hotel. They will not be near the start line.........John Desmond"

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

last year the baggage was collected in the penrose quay car park close to the start line(I was pre-registered so I don't know if this was also the resistration station)and brought from there to Cobh. Do you know if it is the same baggage collection point or will the vans be leaving from the Montenotte hotel?