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Downland challenge

18-Aug-2018 Clayton, West Sussex, UK (England)

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2 REVIEWS
Trail Race Race Terrain
45KM / 28Miles
1 Day - 100 Runners

Alternate Distances: 21KM/13M

DIFFICULTY Race Difficulty Beginner  

Entry From £35 GBP

The Downland Challenge was an old school 30 mile Ultra put on by Haywards Heath Harriers until 2014. It was many locals first Ultra and was hard, only had 3 aid stations with only Jelly babies and water.

We will be bringing this back to the racing calendar on the same day as our 13 The Hard Way Half Marathon.

The Downland originally started in Clayton Playing fields but this is no longer viable so it will start a mile down the road at Underhill lane where the half starts.

You will have to take on the lung busting climb up the Tank tracks to the South Downs way which you will follow to Southease where you will turn around and retrace your steps.

We aim to keep it as it was intended with only 3 aid stations  but we will pile them high as we usually do.

Route Map

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Event Organiser
Jay Mccardle

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Beginner

Elevation: Very little change < 500 metres. Benign running terrain, not technical.

Suitable for: First ultra runners completing a marathon or doing regular long distance running in the last six months.

Intermediate

Elevation: Increase of up to 1000 metres

Suitable for: Runners who have completed at least one ultra distance race (or similar event) or are doing long distance running (>26 miles) regularly, with elevation shown.

Advanced

Elevation: Increase of up to 1500 metres

Suitable for: Runners who have completed several ultra distances or similar events, or are doing long distance running regularly, with elevation shown.

Expert

Elevation: Increase of up to 2000 metres with some challenging climatic conditions (e.g. ice, snow, humidity or heat) and or technical terrain

Suitable for: Experienced runners who have completed at least regular ultra distances in last 12 months, or are doing regular long distance running (>50 miles) with elevation and conditions shown (where possible). Admission to these races may be subject to evidence of recent qualifying race participation and recent medical examination certificate. Check with the race organiser regarding entry requirements.

Brutal

Elevation: Increase of up to 2000 metres with very challenging climatic conditions (e.g. ice, snow, humidity, heat or at high altitude) and or technical terrain.

Suitable for: Very experienced long distance ultra runners (min 3 years’ experience) or are doing regular long distance running (>50 miles) with elevation and conditions shown (where possible). Admission to these races is often subject to evidence of recent qualifying race participation and recent medical examination certificate. Purchase of specialist kit is often recommended for these races.

Endurance - Multi-activity

Type: An ultra distance race including at least two of the following activities such as running, swimming, cycling, kayaking, skiing and climbing. It may also include different climatic conditions (eg ice, snow, humidity, cold water, mud or heat).

Suitable for: Experienced multi-skilled athletes who have trained for the different activities included in this event. Admission to these races may be subject to receipt of a recent medical examination certificate. Check with the race organiser regarding entry requirements and any specialist equipment required such as a wetsuit, skis or a mountain bike.

Global - Virtual

Type: A virtual race which can be run at any time shown on the dates shown, on any type of terrain in any country.

Suitable for: For runners from beginners to experienced as you choose your own course and challenge based on the guidelines and options set by the virtual race organiser.

Review Downland challenge

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DarenP

07:50 22-08-18

Low key, race - full (27+ miles) and half marathon options. Both ‘out and back’. Friendly crew and competitors. Well stocked aid stations (3 for full, 2 for half). 20 minutes from home. What’s not to like?

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Giubi86

02:49 19-08-18

The Downland Challenge was my first marathon and ultramarathon that I ran, with my husband (although we went our own ways!), after a good 5 months training. I picked it over other races because it was conveniently located less than an hour by train from London, where we live, and because it was easy to enter, affordable and along a path we really like.
The information provided was few but clear and the race organiser, Sussex Trail Events, was very nice in getting back to all (ehm…) the emails I sent them asking for some practical details as I was needlessly worrying about too many things!
The week prior to the race I got an email with all the details of the race and specification of which kind of food there was going to be at the aid stations.
On race day we showed up at the right time and it wasn’t long before we set off running. This was really nice as we did not have to wait around, getting cold, between the registration and the start of the race. Also, near the registration, there was free water and a gazebo selling coffee, tea, soft drinks and energy bars, everything at 1pound – and the lady selling them was lovely!
The crowd was mostly made up of seasoned, local runners, a very cheerful bunch I had the chance to chat to along the way. Really good vibes from them and from the people at the aid stations – cracked some silly jokes with the guys at the 2nd aid station, which was great for the morale.
I did not have to rely on the aid stations for food, because I had my own, but there was quite a good selection of bananas, clementine, jelly babies, peanuts, hot cross buns, *****tail sausages (which I do not eat, but many others appreciated). It was great to have an extra water station because I had a leaking flask and lost most of my water on the way back, so I did well with a top-up before the last miles.
The end of the race was a casual affair as I was handed a beer in a bespoke glass…and that was the end!
Unfortunately, a lot of people had left by then, but it was nice to chat we the few people left.
I really enjoyed the race and, in particular, getting to chat to a person here and there while I was running. Everyone was very nice and, although there was a good spirit of competition among the most experience runners, it was a very relaxed and fun atmosphere, lots of smiling and small chats!
Would definitely recommend if you are looking for a well-organized but no-frills, old school event in a beautiful part of the country.

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