It is going to take a couple of days to confirm a new date and it is subject to the availability of the venue and our key suppliers.
The commercial use of the Eastnor Castle Deer Park increases significantly from now into the Summer and we need to find a date that fits in with this and does not clash with important local or national races.
We will produce a policy confirming arrangements for transfer to other events should the revised date not be suitable for existing entrants.
The decision this morning to cancel the race was a significant blow to everyone concerned, especially given the lateness of the call.
We had been obviously been monitoring weather reports continually on the days preceding the race and were tracking those against what we were actually experiencing at Eastnor.
Rain was not a concern for us – but the high winds and low temperatures that we were experiencing were. We expected the winds to abate and blow through, but they didn’t, in fact they significantly increased from about 0800. This introduced two key factors effecting the viability of the race; 1; Wind chill, which we believed created significant risk to the welfare of the juniors in particular – in regards to the potential of them suffering from exposure and core body temperature drop.
We had mitigated this yesterday by erecting a large heated marquee – but experience has taught us that we would doubtless have to recover several if not many individuals from around the course, and given the conditions this morning, it could place an unsustainable load on the marshalling/safety staff and their ability to react with the right kit and vehicles.
This concern, although not so significant for the senior race, was compounded by factor 2; falling trees and branches; One of the marshals performing a pre race safety inspection returned to his Land Rover to find it pinned down by the roof by a blown over tree; the vehicle was damaged and immovable. A recovery vehicle sent out with a chainsaw to recover him, was blocked by two other trees blown down around the course.
This in itself is certainly a hazard for the runners, but the effect it has for us as organisers, means that we lose our ability to provide a sustainable emergency and first aid service to recover injured/cold or exhausted runners from the course. We have no ability to drive on the course itself when the race is live obviously and rely on a network of unseen tracks to support race security for the runners and marshalling staff. These were rapidly becoming compromised.
Mud Runner has enjoyed the most incredible support, loyalty and regard from its runner base over the last 3 years and that energy now flows through us as organisers, which gives us with a passion to stage challenging, tough, fun and filthy runs – but ultimately in an environment that ALL can enjoy and savour.
In regard to this, we also have a responsibility to the friends and family that come to support the runners, those die-hards who travel with the runners and cheer them on regardless, and also our many volunteer staff, who without, we couldn’t run the race at all. The risk of exposure for our marshals who spend +/- 6 hours out on the course in one place was also a consideration.
We have to assume the responsibility for the welfare of all these people also.
There is nothing worse as an event organiser having to make the decision we took this morning; we know that many runners, families and friends had gone to considerable expense, time, training and organising to turn up and that to have the race cancelled within a few hours of the start is irritating beyond belief. Many runners would have raised sponsorship for todays race, so the disappointment for those guys becomes compounded further.
We held out to the 12th hour because we genuinely felt that the conditions would improve.
We looked at all aspects of the above, and felt in balance that our responsibility in running a safe and enjoyable event overrode the ability to run ironically the toughest Mud Runner yet. We are all desperately disappointed.
As you can appreciate we kept the event open as long as we could as conditions on the ground were wet but reasonable.
We initially cancelled the children's race due to exposure for the young runners.
Following this we had a tree land on a marshalls car at 0.750 this morning and several others across the track, which would have limited our ability to look after injured runners and so we cancelled the main event.
Please bear with us on a reschedule date. We appreciate that many of you have incurred considerable travel cost and inconvenience. We need to negotiate with the castle to find a suitable date, and also will work with you all to select a date that clashes the least with your existing race plans.
Potential Mud Masters - we will work with you to make sure you can maintain your status.
Further to my last email, I wanted to give you an update:
Marquee: We now have a heated changing marquee split into male and female. It probably won't take the whole junior field at once, but it should suffice. They can always use the hot tub to stay warm while they are waiting to get into warm and dry clothes
New Car Park: We are concerned about the additional walking the Junior Mud Runners will have to do, particulalry those under 8.
The route to the new car park will take you part of the way to the start. so, if you are bringing an under 8 to the run and you are concerned about the extra walk, there is a drop off point before the car park, where you could drop your children, while you go and park your car.
We have arranged for a CRB checked member of staff to wait there with your children. This will halve the walk from the car park to the start area.
If you have any concerns or questions please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Mud Runner OBLIVION is going ahead. However, we have had to make a couple of changes to cope with the weather:
Car Park: This is now an 800 metre walk (over a hill) from the start/finish area. We are sorry for the move, however, this is the only spot we can use which can cope with this weather.
Please add an additional 20 - 30 minutes to your travel plans to allow us to park you safely and to walk to the race village.
Tub of Love: We have doubled the size of the tub of love to nearly 20 metres and will heat it to 40 degrees celsius, get in there to warm up.
Change of Clothes: We are doing all we can to bring in additional heated marquees to provide a dry area for runners to change into after the race. Although we will be distributing foil blankers, we know that people cool very quickly and the predicted temp with windchill is 1 degree celsius, so we recommend you carry warm clothes with you from your car. You can store them in the marquee or leave them with your friends.
It is always useful to attach something that distinguishes your bag or bin liner. Elsie's favourite is a black bin linner with a pink bow - its a personal choice. Do not leave anything of value in your bag.
Children's Race: Children and Elsie are far more likely to suffer from exposure and they will get cold quickly, so it is essential they have warm clothes prior to their walk back to the car.
In the first 2 kilometres of the childrens race are a series of long water pits about 2 foot deep, there is a parallel track beside the pits, if you are running with a child who is under 8 and you have any concerns about the depth or the cold conditions please use the alternate track. You can always test them out on the first one.
Tattoos: There are 6,000 free temporary Mud Runner Tattoos available in the race village. Enough for 2 per runner, please get some and adorn yourself.
Key Drop: There is a key drop area next to the registration tent. Your keys will be put in an envelope with your race number and you can collect them at the end of the race with your race number.
We are doing everything we can to deliver a fantastic race experience for you, however, the conditions are likely to cause the odd delay for parking and exit. Please give yourself enough time and keep warm.
See you sunday.
Joining instructions can be downloaded below.
Please note that although the race starts at 10am, you need to allow 20 minutes to walk from the race village to the start line which is part way up a fairly revolting hill.
"As we are keen to give you the best experience and the worst of the Mud, we have moved the start line partway up the hill. It is a pretty nasty hill and you need to give yourself plenty of time to walk up it to the start.
If you would like some musical accompaniment we are sending a Melodeon player to walk slowly up the hill from 0930am, you are welcome to join him and ask for requests."
There are also temporary Mud Runner tattoos for you to use, there are 2 per runner, and are being distributed just after the car park. Please make use of them.
If your race number does not arrive you can pick up a new number from registration on the day.
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Most of the entry packs have now been sent out. If your pack does not arrive please come to registration on the day and you can pick up a new number, full joining instructions can be downloaded below.
Mud Masters: A list of potential Mud Masters is also included below. To become a Mud Master you need to have completed three different Mud Runner events in a 12 month period - once you have achieved this status you receive a Mud Master Hoodie and also run with a different colour race number.
If you believe your name should be on the list please contact email@example.com
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