After a very wet and unsettled Saturday the turnout was good for this trial run of the infamous Lord Pike’s Carisbrooke Castle Cross Country Half Marathon of Awesomeness.
The brainchild of the interestingly coiffured, part time zombie and all round top bloke Dean Pike, this was the second trial run of this course.
“It was one of my favourite training runs for ages” the mohawked Lord of Pike manor tells me “it was a perfect half marathon in distance so I’d thought I’d propose it as a possible club race”
This course has everything…. fields, forests, trails, puddles, lots of hills, mud, plenty of mud and of course it’s very own Castle! Not many races have one of those!
It was decided by Dean and the IWRR committee that following the success of last years club only run, we would extend the invitation to all Island clubs to take part in this years “just for fun” run and with some negotiation with English Heritage, it would start and finish within the Castle – what a backdrop!
Starting in the medieval castle itself, the runners made their way through the iconic portcullis and out on the tarmac covering Millers Lane, crossing Clatterford Shute and up Nodgham Lane, where the fun really started. 4 miles of muddy, muddy hills took the runners up onto the dizzy heights of the Tennyson Trail giving them panoramic views of all 4 corners of the Island.
They continued on the trail along to Cheverton Farm before crossing Shorwell Shute to Chillerton mast before dropping back down via the steep descent at Garstons before returning along Millers Lane and Castle Lane before a last brutal climb through the shrubbery as they emerge at the rear of the historic monument before crossing the line just inside the castle grounds.
“I was really happy with the turnout given the unsettled weather. It went reallocate y well, few minor creases to iron out but I think this trial run has put us in great stead to make this an official race next year”