North Downs Way 50 prep

Now that Paris is done & dusted I should really turn my attention to the other race I rashly booked some time last year. The North Downs Way 50, a 50 mile point to point race following the North Downs Way (yep, clue was in the name) East from Farnham.

I expect there's various mandatory kit I will need to check I have so today I popped along to the Centurion website to have a shufty.

Their website is delightfully full of useful information. Such as:

"Knowledge of the trail offers both physical and mental advantages during the race. Runners are advised to cover/ recce as much of the trail as possible before race day."

Oh dear, I'm pretty sure that's me physically and mentally disadvantaged then. As if I'm not enough already.

Second surprise, the race is in 16 days, 13 hours, 30 minutes and 45 seconds. 44. 43... I'm not sure what planet I'm on but I could have sworn the 17th May was a month away. Damn their in your face count down.*

Seriously, the website is fantastic. I skip through all the scary stuff like 5500' ascent, 13.5 hour cut off, 35 celsius, and 'dropping' which I imagine refers to en route toilet arrangements.

I find the mandatory kit list:
  • Fully Charged Mobile Phone including the numbers for the Race Medic and Race Director (on the number you have given at registration)
  • Water Bottles/Bladder capable of carrying a minimum of 1 litre
  • Survival Blanket: 1.4m x 2m minimum
  • Route Map
  • Compass
  • Whistle
  • Light source (headtorch or flashlight)

I thought there might have been a first aid kit & waterproof with taped seams required. Maybe also a bestselling paperback to read whilst waiting for the death bus.

I think I'm okay for all of these except the map. I'll also need to check my foil bag/blanket - I can't remember which they are or what sizes I have.

I'm not sure if I will have a crew available or not. The current shortlist of potential crew remain stubbornly less than keen. I haven't tried bribery yet.

I will need to study the map in detail given my lack of advance recces. I'm not familiar with this part of the NDW. I am familiar with the Dover to Canterbury stretch and I know that even though it is sign posted it can be difficult to know which way to turn when the trail crosses a road and the trail doesn't continue directly opposite. I may even search to see if the route is available to download onto ViewRanger and my phone.

I found this cool pace calculator here: www.climbers.net/race/NDW-50-North-Downs-Way-2013
I've no idea if this will reflect my reality in any way, but it will be an interesting distraction none the less.

Plenty to think about then!

*Edit - I am a donkey. NDW is a month away. TP100 is counting down from 16 days!

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