The almost flat 50. In the words of the Race Director Dave Urwin, “people have complained about the hills in the flat 50, whats surprises him is why on earth the hilly 50 runners don’t complain about the flats” for a fuller description refer to : https://www.albionrunning.org/flat50 there are some mild hills, but they are very manageable.
The flat 50 would be the only race I personally took part in, in 2019. This would be largely due to a Morton’s Neuroma https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/mortons-neuroma/ the condition in the end become so painful it would stop me running altogether. If you are suffering with something similar give me a call. I could save you some time.
For the 2019 flat 50 however it couldn’t stop me. This was due to the flat 50 being the 1st race where I had nurtured, persuaded, help train people to try out ultras. I had a duty to get myself and them to the finish.
Just a word on course marking. The marking is perfectly adequate. I would recommend you use a GPX and learn the route, and have your wits about you. It really is very difficult to get lost on the flat 50. The entry fees are very low and the most reasonable out there. There is something special about Dave and his races. I have also volunteered at the Ham and Lyme 100k and had a great day.
Dean and Jennie would be there every step of the way for us, tending our every need. There is no better people to have support you on a race day. There are many unsung heroes in ultra’s. Dean is one of the greatest. Dean is also an excellent race crew leader. Yes, green beard. He is Welsh. Dean gives so much to this sport. Jennie is also one of the most determined ultra runners I have ever met. Both true Welsh spirits.
I would also like to thank my wife Sara. Sara had Jo’s and Laurent’s children and our own all day. Sara runs the best Ultra crèche in the South West. Sara is one of the kindest people to children I have ever met. I have often toyed with the idea of opening an Ultra Crèche. Sara isn’t quite convinced yet. But I will continue to work on it.
Laurent’s face! he is looking at me thinking “how on earth did Sean get me doing this, I am freezing” Joanne, Laurent’s wife “yes Sean! I can’t believe you got us both to the start line” Gaby has a smile, and said to me, “I like this Dave, funny, when can we run”. Lauragh is in the background thinking “if I stay back here do you think Sean will notice if I slip off”
All five of us got off the start line. Our five runners were always expected to thin out quite quickly. Jo and Laurent both experienced marathon runners got off like the wind. For a 1st Ultra Marathon both did absolutely amazing. Jo’s final time was 11:54:21. Laurent shortly followed with 12:10:08. What fantastic times for new comers to ultra distance running. Considering Gaby had never ran at all two months prior to the race 14:35:32 was a fantastic hard fought effort.
Gaby’s race blog https://ultrafreedomadventures.com/gaby-1st-ultra-marathon/
Lauragh and Martyn got to mile 48 and had to pull out due to injuries. I am immensely proud of them too. Training hadn’t gone to plan, but they gave it their all.
I finished last. Someone has to! There is no shame in that folks, so never think there is. There is only glory. In fact I think the folks that come last or near the back are often the people that fight harder, are tested further, are dealing with things you cant see. They have huge hearts. Despite not looking remotely like runner (in my case) we turn up and give it a go. And hey! despite, being in agony I got a 51 mile PB.
I loved the race and the pit-stops were great. Always shout out to the volunteers at pit stops. They are also heroes. Dean and Jennie were fantastic. And Dave and Albion Running are really special.
Being last allowed me to see this. So, doing it in 7 hrs, might mean you could miss this wonder. Although I suppose you could have your tea get changed and drive to Blue Anchor to see it.
In all the ultras I have managed to complete. I always seam to have one wonderful emotional event, amongst all the more challenging emotions you experience during ultras. A time that allows full clarity on my life, a time to be humble. A time to be grateful for everything I have that is simple and non material. A connection to earth, the sky, the oceans, the forests. I have spoken to many ultra runners and they often speak of similar experiences.
I hope you enjoyed this post. My advice is sign up to the flat 50 if this is your first ultra, sign up if it isn’t your 1st and want to try and get a good fast time. https://www.albionrunning.org/flat50 you wont regret it. I along with Dean will be supporting Albion Running in 2020 on the West Country Ultra, and other events. Pete will be making his 1st 100 mile ultra attempt. Jo will be at the start line of the Flat 50. In an under 10 hrs attempt. (she will kill me for saying that) And Gaby is signing up for the hilly 50 and the Conquest of Avalon.