I was excited about taking part in this years Tartan Warrior, after hearing how well last years events went from a few clients. And I have to say I really enjoyed it.
Signing up for the was done through EntryCentral.com. The process was simple and painless. Not as fancy as some other sign up sites, but it does the job. I felt that post race information was given out a little late, less than 48 hours before the race. 2 car park options were given for the race, and we went for car park 1. However, we found it difficult to find, with no signage to the car park and sat nav taking me a little further away(apologies to the persons house I had to park outside ). But a little wonder up the road and I could see where were to go and the red arrows took us to the event area, it was a bit of a trek.
Once at the event village things were pretty straight forward. My team and I were in wave one and registration was easy to find. The cue for registration was seemingly at a standstill for an age, but with a quick announcement the prioritised wave 1's registration and it sped up considerably. Not much else at the event village, just a couple of toilet stalls, no real bag drop and a table you could get some water and drinks from the Canada Wood Kitchen and Bar. But for the size and pricing of the event, couldn't really grumble too much. After some briefing on the wrist bands for the obstacle monitoring/penalty system they were trying out, were off to the start pen.
Little windy and cold standing there on the start line, and we had a little wait until were given the 3, 2, 1 by Joda( organiser of event with other half John). Once off, and sheesh I went off, we hit a muddy, uneven field, with a sharp turn into a nice deep puddle, then down to a crawl in the mud, a perfect start to really thin out the charging crowd. I kind of over cooked it at the start. Too much adrenaline me thinks! And paid for that no too long later. Hitting a couple of hurdles and then our first climb. After this it was a good solid running section. The location was fantastic, and have to say the obstacles were great. Wall climbs, table top, monkey bars, natural burns, rope climb, monkey bars and the addition of a ring toss. The course was fast and exciting. Challenging but fun. A great mixture and blend of natural and man made obstacles. Marshalls were all helpful, well except a couple of us getting told to go left instead of right at one point. It probably cost me a podium finish, but it made me run harder to gain a good few places back. And I can't let that effect my view on what I found to be a very enjoyable race.
As always at OCR's the atmosphere was great and spirits high, having a good laugh with many on the start line!
And I have to say, it is definitely the best FAMILY event around. It was great and obvious to see that kids and family was a big focus for this event, which I can only assume reflects the values of Tartan Warrior. Kids looked like they had a ball. I hope this event continues for the next few years so I can take my wee boy around the course.
Tartan Warrior was a fun, solid race. It crammed so much in to such a small course, which made you feel you were out running longer than you actually were. Really a great introduction race to OCR's, and superb for enthusiastically motivating the family to together and get outdoors and get active. Yes there were a few niggles and a few things lacking, none of that was to do with the important thing, the race. But for a more 'smaller', local, family friendly event you can not grumble. I am sure as they grow they will learn and only get better.