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Waterway 30

26-Jan-2019 Sturton Road, South Wheatley Village Hall, Retford, Notts, DN22 9DL, Nottinghamshire, UK (England)


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Trail Race Race Terrain
50KM / 31Miles
1 Day - 200 Runners

DIFFICULTY Race Difficulty Advanced  

Entry From £37 GBP

The 31 mile route takes a clockwise circular route on a marked route and Marshals present. It is one full lap.

From the hall you head out towards the Chesterfield Canal which is a 3 mile journey through challenging field edges and track. Once at the canal at Hayton runners turn right to run with the water directly on their right.

This is a very runnable and picturesque tow path with plentiful bird and wildlife all around. The bonus is the tow path seems to cope really well with winter (not too muddy if it’s been dry) so it is still great to run well on.

Soon enough runners arrive for refreshment at Drakeholes (Aid Station) to break up this section of the canal before continuing on all the way to West Stockwith (Aid Station) where you reach the end of the Chesterfield Canal to immediately pick up the River Trent to head towards Gainsborough.

The Trent Valley Way is a real challenge under foot especially after the smooth canal tow path to make things interesting! You are rewarded with a real sense of freedom and solitude at times by the Trent.

Eventually you will hit the Trentport pub in Gainsborough (Aid Station) to refresh once again before continuing down the river bank towards Littleborough. Sometime later you will most likely be glad to leave the Trent bank to hit a track bringing you into Upper Ings Lane (Aid Station).

Here you get the chance to fuel for the last time before pushing hard on runnable trail with a few inclines and declines through in to eventually make your way back to South Wheatley Hall!

Clear marking will be in place throughout so you can enjoy the race with the vastly reduced risk of going off trail.


Event Organiser
Hobo Pace



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.


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.


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.


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.


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 Waterway 30

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02:18 01-02-18

I undertook the Waterways 30 (really 31.5 miles) Saturday 27 January 2018. Race HQ is in the local village hall - the facilities were adequate, although there was the usual pre-race toilet queues the races numbers are kept low to make everything work. The briefing was welcoming, particularly for those undertaking their first ultra, and it was also nice to make special mention for the marshals. The marshals are worthy of particular note, i don't know what it was about them, but they were collectively friendlier than your average event. The last refreshment tent were even offering drafts and canapes - this made me smile when I need it, as they were only offering the same fare as the previous refreshment points.

The course was not what i expected. I thought that as the route was along established paths and relatively fast I would be on for a PB. Wrong. The winter weather plays a huge part and I thought that the various reviews that make reference to mud were probably because it had been an exceptionally muddy year, but this is the norm. The first couple of miles take you over some planted crop fields with soil that sticks to your shoes like glue and you get to the canal towpath carrying so much mud that I would have sworn that I had a small child clinging to each foot. Never worry, the tow path wends its way through pretty countryside,with the only thing to concern you is the mud - are you getting the drift?

When you hit the river Trent at about the half-way mark you are now running atop a levee. The challenge here is that the rough grass is long and underfoot the ground is uneven due to tractor and horse traffic. There are a couple of stiles which are interesting with tired legs, but even more of a challenge if you are lifting dogs over them like some of the runners were having to do. It was at this part of the race that I decided to give up on a PB rather than bruise my ankles too much - this was a practice race ahead of another event next month so I didn't want to pick up an injury

What I really liked about this race was the warm and fuzzy feel it has. This comes from lots of small features such as the personal touch of an engraved medal (extra cost and hassle for the organiser, so easy to see why other races do not bother) and that all of the drinks/food are vegan (i am not vegan but really like the inclusive approach)

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08:24 30-01-17

Did the Waterway 30 on Saturday so here is my review, firstly parking is really handy as it is on the grounds of the hall where you register. What could be better. No dropbags allowed but being how the cars are allowed so close to the hall there is no need. There was no real panic with the toilets of changing rooms either. Great warm hall to wait in before the start of the race. The briefing was fun and informative and got everyone laughing so a great nerve smasher for sure. The staff were very helpful and cheery. The day was promising rain and we knew the course was going to be muddy, we were not let down here. The first 10miles along the canal and ploughed field gave us enough mud to make any hippo happy for a year. Very slippy underfoot along the canal making getting into a good pace hard. The second half along the river was less muddy but with its grass and uneven terrain, it was also hard to get a pace going. There are about 5 stiles in the 2nd half which made the tired legs smile. The route was flat and very very easy to navigate. There was more than enough fuel/ water stations which carried enough stuff for all racers. Getting back into the warm hall at the end with hot/ cold drinks and food was good. Getting the personalised medal and running vest was a bonus for a good, well supported ultra. Well worth looking into if you are wanting a hard underfoot, yet flat first ultra. Oh and the views and area running in was also very nice. ( no built up areas to zap the mojo)

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