This year’s race review for Run The Gap is going to be slightly different.
In the past, I have given this race review from the perspective of a runner. This year it’s going to be from the perspective of a race director.
Last year (2014), I was the race director for the 21km trail event, however, it was difficult on the day to manage that and run my race.
I decided not to run this year for a couple of reasons. I don’t regret not running, I still had a great time, and I still felt like I was a part of the running atmosphere. But sometimes it’s just nice to give back.
It also meant it was a lot easier to manage my baby, during the 21.5km trail event. But also be one of the official photographers on the day.
Run the Gap offers 3 events
- 21.5km Trail Run
- 12km Run
- 6km Run/Walk
It also offers a bonus Mini Run The Gap event for little runners up to 7 years of age.
21km Trail Run
Starting at 7:30 am, this event starts opposite the CFA shed and takes the footpath towards Delley’s Bridge, the Halls Gap Hotel, and then up Reid’s Lane.
At the end of Reid’s Lane is where the adventure crosses from a road race to a trail race.
The 21 event features part of the Mount William range, following the fireline below Boronia Peak towards Tunnel Road.
Runners will then find themselves going over the Mountain before following the Bellfield fireline back into Halls Gap.
Be prepared to see Kangaroos, Wallabies, Emu’s, Echinda’s and other flora and fauna. As well as views of the Black Range and Wonderland Range.
The 12km event starts along the school road at 8 am.
You run down the path before taking Tandara Road to enter the park via the bridge over to the Fyans Creek loop. This is a single-track section before opening up into an open plain, where you will see the Wonderland range and various Kangaroos and Emus. If you are lucky you may even spot the Grampian’s “Puma”.
Crossing the creek you will then be taken up behind the Run The Gap fitness station before enjoying a nice downhill stretch.
What goes down must go up. Up you will travel to get to the Bellfield damn, where you will travel along the damn wall taking in the views of Lake Bellfield, the Wonderland & Mt William Range.
Once you have travelled the length of the wall, you will then take the path back into the centre of town, passing the Brambuk Cultural Centre, joining up with those travelling in the 6km event.
6km Run / Walk
Just like the 12km run, the 6km event starts off the same 15 minutes later at 8:15 am.
Taking the Fyans Creek track to the open plains before looping around the front of Brambuk The National Park & Cultural Centre to get back to Tandara drive and the walking track back to Halls Gap.
Each event gives you a taste of the Grampians and its flora & fauna.
Overall numbers were up from 2014, with 762 entrants.
The trial event almost tripled going from 30 entries in 2014 to 85. The feedback I got from various trail runners, was that they loved it. That the 2nd half was hard, that it was a roller coaster of hills, but they loved it.
Many also said they would be back again next year.
The only negative feedback I received was that there was no participation medal and that there should have been another drink station for the trail event (Mind you this was said by a person who did not carry the mandatory 300ml of water.)
- Distances for all fitness levels
- Free breakfast lunch (gold coin donation for families), for participants
- Great community spirit
- Reasonable entry price
- Magnificent scenery
- Mini Kids Race
- No participants medal
- No free t-shirt
- Travel distance (from Melbourne)
- Medals for winners of each event
- On-the-spot prizes
- T-Shirts available to purchase
I may be a little biased, but seriously this is a fantastic event, and I’m very grateful to have been a part of it.
It’s the type of event that you save the date, and book the weekend. Halls Gap is the gateway to the Grampians. Your adventure awaits here, so I look forward to seeing you next year in 2016.
3 thoughts on “Race Recap: Run The Gap”
Great recap, that photo of the guy in pain is fantastic (maybe not for him but a great pic). Once again I didn’t get down there, a few issues but didn’t fancy driving myself down there that early.
I agree though about the finishers medals. I’d pay an extra $10 for an entry to have a medal. From the point of view that not everyone is an athletic, not everyone is fast or have great form or were great at sports in their younger years. But now as a runner, even a plodder, 21.5km is 21.5km whether you do it in 2 hours or 3. It’s a huge accomplishment. The finishers medals I have got now over the years I’m so proud of.
Anyway, congrats on being the Race Director, couldn’t imagine a finer person.
The guy with the pain face, was putting it on for the camera, but it was too good not to share, because the reality was, that’s what it would have felt like.
We had planned on wrist bands as a finishes token but didn’t get them organised in time. Next year.
To be honest, while getting a medal is great, there are only a few that I really love.
My Run Melb (2012) medal, Spartan, Roller Coaster run, & wings for life tokens, have to be my fav by far, for memory and design.
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