2014 Killarney Adventure Race Preview. GolfCentralDaily's Doc In The Field!

I'm swapping the golf clubs for the trail runners and bike this Saturday to compete in the gruelling and epic Killarney Adventure Race...

I'm swapping the golf clubs for the trail runners and bike this Saturday to compete in the gruelling and epic Killarney Adventure Race.  Here's my preview.

This Saturday will see 2,200 competitors take to the roads, mountains and lakes of Kerry for the 2014 Killarney Adventure Race.  Having done the 60 km version last year, I’m heading back for another lung full of what is now Ireland’s biggest adventure race.  And most scenic!



7 Quick Pre- Race Tips

Related: Also check out my tips on the Killarney Adventure Race YouTube Channel here.

1. While the “Sport” racers start from flat ground at the Gleneagle Hotel the “Pro” and “Elite” racers can expect, let’s say, a bumpier ride.  Be ready to go at Kate Kearney’s cottage.  The KAR starts with an uphill step and goes uphill from there on the mountain run up and down Strickeen mountain.  The advice here is not to get carried away in a balls out dash; maintain a steady pace because you’ll need your legs for the second run.




2. Following the first run it’s a transition to the bike.  Recommended bike setup is toe straps (cycling shoes are fine too but you must then carry your runners in a bag) and armadillo or gatorskin tyres.  There’s a lovely downhill on the end of the cycle, but first you must earn the privilege with a really tough and extended climb.

3. There’s a two kilometre run off the bike down to Muckross Lake for the kayak stage and back up after.  Be careful to note where you are leaving your bike at this transition.  It can get very busy as different waves meet here.

4. The kayaks provided are double sit on top kayaks around a circular route.  It’s best to let the most experienced kayaker sit in the back as he or she has do more of the steering!

5. Following the kayak there’s a run up Torc Mountain and Mangerton Mountain for the longer route racers.  The Torc run route is a new one this year to a viewing point at Barr Na Currane and measures about 7km up and back while the Mangerton summit of the Expert races is a 16 Km run.  The Sport racers don’t get away lightly here either as they face the gruelling 'Cardiac Steps' on the way to the top of Torc Waterfall.  With showers forecast the trail can get very slippery when wet so trail runners are in order.

6. After the second run its back on the bike again to the finish at the Gleneagle Hotel.

7. Save a little energy for the final couple of hundred metres run and crossing the main road over the special KAR bridge known as “Ollie’s Erection.”

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There may be over 2000 participants from Ireland, the UK and USA taking part in the Killarney Adventure Race on Saturday but there is set to a titanic battle of the head of the men’s race with defending champion Aidan McMoreland set to go up against Gaelforce winner Dessie Duffy.


Preparation

By now your hard training should all be done.  Your training this week should be a short sharp session around midweek after which you should rest up before Saturday.  Great lead in preparation is also doing some one minute bike- run -bike intervals to help train the muscles for the transitions.

Stretch!  Adventure racing and lactic acid unfortunately go hand in hand so the best advice the week of the race is to stretch, stretch, stretch.  Start on your calves, then your quads, your hamstrings and all the muscles around the hips.  The kayak section (if you are not used to it) especially plays havoc with the muscles and stretching will really help.  Magnesium tablets also help if you cramp at the mere mention of cramp!

Get your gear together.  Check that you have bottles of electrolytes to drink during the race.  Carrying two bottles on your bike should be perfect as you return to your bike twice in the race.  You can also split your gels and energy bars between your pocket and the bike.  Take in plenty of electrolyte solution on Thursday and Friday and stick to a healthy diet with plenty of complex carbs.  I recommend eating a small bowl of porridge early Saturday morning 3-4 hours before the race.

Check your bike is in good order.  Use puncture proof tyres such as armadillos or gatorskins if you can.  If using road tyres it’s worthwhile to check them by running your finger along the outside and inside before putting them on.  A great tip to repair small nicks or cuts in the rubber is to use a little bit of superglue.  Check the tyre pressures, brakes and that your gear shifters are travelling smoothly up and the cassette without that dreaded rattle. And of course, don’t forget your helmet pump and spare tube.

Get your clothing and shoes sorted.  Make sure you have a rear pocket for gels and your mandatory safety kit.  Cycling shorts and shirts I find are best for adventure racing; they will get wet and they dry quickly.  Applying plenty of Vaseline to the feet and nether regions is also vital.  Travel as light as possible but make sure to bring a raincoat.  There is a strictly raincoat check on the starting line and you wont be allowed start without it!

When you register and drop off your bike, take great care to ensure there is a good clearance between the rear derailleur of your bike and the one next to you.  So many people have returned to their bikes at transition in a race only to find their fellow competitor’s bike piled on top of it and knocked their gears out of sync.  It’s nice to be nice!
For more details on the Killarney Adventure Race check out www.killarneyadventurerace.ie and my video tips on the Killarney Adventure Race YouTube channel.  Best of luck!


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GolfCentralDaily | Golf Parody Fun Gossip Jokes Betting Tips: 2014 Killarney Adventure Race Preview. GolfCentralDaily's Doc In The Field!
2014 Killarney Adventure Race Preview. GolfCentralDaily's Doc In The Field!
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