27 Jan

Tough Races Come In Threes

action from the Winter 9BAR Holly Challenge

There are three races that will push minds and bodies to their limits this last weekend in January. First of the three is the Waterway 30 tomorrow (Saturday 28 January) in Nottinghamshire. With easy navigation, well-stocked checkpoints and a scenic one-lap course, making it a very good introduction to ultra running; not forgetting a generous 10.5-hour cut off time.

This is one of six events organised by HOBO Pace, along with two, 10-mile races, Dukeries 10/30/40 and the Robin Hood 100. The course is 90% trail with the remaining 10% on country lanes/tracks that links two main waterways – Chesterfield Canal and the River Trent. It starts and finishes at South Wheatley Village Hall with all finishers receiving a HOBO Pace vest and customised medal upon completion. 
Second of the three is the popular Winter 9BAR Holly Challenge (also Saturday) from How Hard Can It Be Events in Shropshire. An early season partner of The Holly Challenge in June, this race involves running multiple laps around country lanes in Lightmoor, Telford. Choose between a half or full marathon in a friendly, supportive environment with a unique ‘barbecue and beers’ shaped medal for all finishers. Real-world food and drinks on offer after the race. 
Third up is the last-ever Tough Guy event on Sunday 29 January. The original and what may be considered the best OCR is not for the faint-hearted with over 200 obstacles (including a frozen lake) to conquer. This event started in 1987 and since then, has built a reputation as a brutal endurance challenge. 
For more information about these and other events, visit our race listings section.
Photo courtesy of How Hard Can It Be Events.