Annalong Horseshoe 2022 Race Preview

We are now into race number four of the 2022 NIMRA championship and the first long category race of the series, hosted by BARF and starting at 11am on Saturday 21st May at Carrick Little top car park.

After a brief 2019 stint at Silent Valley, the race last year which traditonally started and finished at Dunnywater was moved to Carrick Little for race HQ, keeping the route as close to the original but also improving parking & toilet access. So far the first three races of the championship (Glenariff, The Fallows and Slieve Martin Hill & Dale) has seen favourable weather and large numbers participating. Last year’s race however was prime example of requiring map and compass to hand with not a mountain in sight from the start line in the dense cloud. This proved to knock a few notable names and pre race favourites off their stride and either down from their usual spots on the results table or to retire with no chance of victory. The men’s podium was occupied with local knowledge benfitting the Mourne Runners 1-2-3 of Adam Cunningham in 2hrs 28mins, followed in by the Bailey brothers, with Gary pipping Clive by 10 seconds on 2mins 41mins. Martjse Hell was first lady home in 2hrs 57mins, and the North Belfast Harrier would have been slightly quicker if she wasn’t rescuing distressed sheep at the early part of the race! Debbie McConnell (Jog Lisburn) came in second with 3hrs 32mins in front of Jackie Toal from BARF (3hrs 39mins) in third.

The race itself is over 20km in length, with 2000m at least of ascent. From Carrick Little the 6 summits that are to be visited in order are Chimney Rock, Donard, Commedagh, Cove, Lamagan and Binnian’s North Tor, with route choice between at your discretion. As last year proved, there is large room for error on route choice between these checkpoints so a good map study and recce on unfamilar sections is highly recommended! Full kit will be required to be carried including waterproof whole body cover (with taped seams and integrated attached hood), hat, gloves, map of the route, compass, whistle, thermal (foil) blanket and emergency food.

Entries close on Wednesday 18th May, link is available on the Online Entries section on the NIMRA website. Good luck to all participants.

*To enter the championship series please sign up to 2022 NIMRA membership on the website and our Facebook & Twitter pages will also regularly update you to links to the online entries to each race once they go live, as well as results & photos later on the day of the event.

*The next NIMRA championship race is the medium category Flagstaff to Carlingford Race (Sunday 19th June) hosted by Armagh AC. Entries are open for this one so follow the link on the website to enter & more info

*Another race entry currently open is the Cairncastle Classic race (Saturday 11th June) which is hosted by East Coast AC. Again, follow links on the website to enter & more info

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