Monday, 25 July 2016

Summer Sessions

Freedom Racing popped up earlier this year with their first event - the brutally hard Kernow VK. Not wanting to leave it there they soon came up with a new series - the summer sessions - a trio of 10k races on the coast path. I missed the first at Porthtowan but made it to the Poldhu event a couple of weeks back.

(c) Liga Lacekle
 So on a sunny Thursday evening I headed down to Poldhu with a couple of friends and got ready for a good charge along the cliffs. Registration was at the Poldhu Beach Cafe, the car park was pretty much full when we got there and it looked like a good turn out as we got down to the beach. We were soon gathered on the beach at the start line and ready to go. Racing across the sand, crossing the stream we all filed out briefly onto the road before joining the coast path and climbing up and over the headland and down towards Church Cove. Crossing the sands behind the beach we climbed again before running along the cliffs on fast single track and descending faster still to Fishing Cove Gunwalloe.

(c) Christiaan Le Roux

From here the coast path leads perilously close to the cliff edge above the shingle beach that runs all the way to Porthleven. A hard climb here leads to the turn around; the stated intent of these races is to make hard but runnable races in beautiful places and they don't disappoint but to be honest I opted to power walk the long steep climb on this part of the race.

Not a bad place for a finish line
The route turns inland and some flat fast trails lead to a short section of road before turning back to seaward and retracing our steps for the last couple of miles. The hills on the last stretch were starting to hurt but I was determined to leave it all out there and pushed as hard as I could on the way back. With the last climb done and my lungs bursting all that was left was a painful sprint across the sands to the finish line.

So a lovely evening, beautiful trails, perfect weather and great company. I didn't have time to hang around but the cafe stayed open where beers and pizza were the order of the day.

The next Summer Session is at Godrevy on September 24th.