One word describes both the 100 and 50km courses for the 2014 TNF100: Epic! If it wasn’t already hard enough, thanks to the new start and finish point of the event, the course has become even more awesome.
Looking at the 50km, there’s a mix of spectacular scenery, lung-busting climbs, quad crushing descents and loads of single track. But what makes it particularly tough is the fact that after already conquering several ascents and long downhill sections, the best has been saved for last with a 14km, grinding, uphill leg to the end. It all culminates in the dreaded climb up Furber Steps to finish at Scenic World.
The opportunity exists for quite a fast start, particularly if you’re good at descending. The first major challenge is just after 10km, with a very steep climb (approx. 180m ascent over 600m!) taking you back up the escarpment. Having a drink station at 13.5km will be a relief for many of the runners. From there it’s an undulating affair with a few steeper sections leading you to a gradual decline from 16km to 18.5km. Then it’s back up again for a little over 2km. A steep down and up occurs from around 23 to 24km before reaching The Queen Victoria Hospital checkpoint at 28km. This will be the key point to refuel and prepare for the tough slog ahead.
From here a gradually steepening descent will test already tired legs as the trail plunges down Kedumba Walls for approximately 7km. It’s now that the race really begins. Fatigue will need to be managed and a sound nutrition plan will be a must. The final 14km will test even the most accomplished of ultra runners. The climb consists of around 750m of ascent with 200m of it coming in the last kilometre! But with cheering family and friends, and the finish line so close, a lot of you will get a new lease of life. The exhilarating sensation of conquering the challenge will wipe any fatigue from your mind!