Countdown on for the Surf Coast Century 100km Ultra Marathon
Rapid Ascent is excited to begin the 100-day countdown to the 2018 Surf Coast Century, an incredible 100km ultra marathon to be held on the Surf Coast on the 15th of September.
The milestone was marked with a gathering of local runners on part of the race course at Point Danger in Torquay, Victoria.
The seventh edition of the Surf Coast Century is expected to attract over 1,300 runners from around Australia and overseas who will participate in the 100km and 50km ultra marathons, making it one of the largest such events in Australia.
The Surf Coast Century has built a solid reputation as one of Australia's must-do trail running events with a varied course that includes beach running below towering cliffs, weaving single track through the hinterland past waterfalls and wild flowers, and cliff top trails past lighthouses and secluded beaches as part of the journey.
It is also considered to be an ideal event for those tackling their first ultra marathon as the course is challenging yet achievable, event logistics are easy and the event vibe supportive. The 100km event may also be completed by relay teams of up to 4 people running 25km each.
Kerryn Bruce from the Surf Coast Trail Runners group signed up for the 100km solo back in March and said she was feeling confident at the 100 day mark after a good run at the Great Ocean Road Marathon in May.
“I told myself I had to do the 100km race when I was down for the shorter Trail Running Series races in Anglesea in 2016, then I saw people walking around with their finisher medals and I went right I want that! So I did a marathon last year, and this year I decided that’s it, it’s the hundred or go home basically.
“I’ve got a training plan, and I also use a local trainer to give me guidance, so I’m following a program and doing some PT work.
“I’m really excited to start training on the trails; it’s the beautiful scenery, the diversity of the landscape, and the running surfaces that mean you have to think about what you’re doing, you can’t just zone out… I love it, it’s just great!”
Nancy Peplow and Megan Hayes are taking on the Surf Coast Century as part of the Running Divas team and said their training had just begun after recent events.
“This is Day 1 of the actual running, I’ve just been strength training for the last couple of days,” said Peplow
“And my legs have just been recovering from the Great Ocean Road Marathon, so this will be my first day to run since then,” said Hayes. “Running Divas ran a competition on who wants to be part of the team and we just went for it – we thought why not!”
Defending champion Ross Hopkins of Mansfield has run the Surf Coast Century every year since its inception in 2012, and after gracing the podium three times, proudly took the win in 2017.
“This event has a bit of everything. The running and scenery is varied and is all beautiful. I love the single track through the hilly Leg 3 as it is trail running at its best. I love the atmosphere and seeing runners of all abilities challenge themselves.
“It is also a great spectator event and the figure 8 course means it is accessible for family and friends to spectate and support.”
Hopkins advised other runners that it was wise to have a training plan.
“Your training plan will vary for each individual, but a smart and specific plan means you are getting the most from your training time.
“More importantly - enjoy being outside. Winter comes with its challenges, but actually it is more important to get outside as the temptation for many is to spend more time inside in the colder moths. We all know how fresh air, nature and exercise contribute positively to our wellbeing, so a commitment to not allowing the cold and dark to impact us is important. Warm clothes, a good head torch and discipline are key ingredients.”
The event is organised by Rapid Ascent, an adventure sports event management company that is based on the Surf Coast and well-known for hosting challenging off-road events.
“We are excited to count down towards the seventh edition of the Surf Coast Century,” said Event Manager Sam Maffett.
“This is a big event on the Australian ultra-running calendar and for the Surf Coast region and we share the excitement of the runners out there as we get closer to this pinnacle event.
“A lot of people are training for this event right now and we respect and appreciate the commitment they have given the event. When preparing for a big goal it is good to break it down into smaller steps, so to get to the 100 days to go point is a good milestone for anyone.
“It also sits as a good point on the calendar to begin training for the shorter event – the 50km ultra marathon, or a great time to tap a friend on the shoulder and encourage them to share the distance as a relay team.”
The 100km course can be completed by individual runners or relay teams of up to four competitors. The 50km solo makes the step into ultra-distance races easier for those not quite ready to tackle the full 100km, as does the relay team option for groups of 2, 3 or 4 runners.
93 percent of survey respondents in 2017 ranked the Surf Coast Century in their top 3 events ever, and for 49 percent it was their first ultra marathon.
The 2017 event also generated over 7,977 bed nights for the region and a direct economic impact of $3.8 million to the local economy, helping to establish the event as a landmark event for the region.
To register or find out more about the Surf Coast Century visit www.SurfCoastCentury.com.au
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