The third leg of the 2011 FrontRunner GutBuster Trail Running Series will be setting foot in Ladysmith June 26.
More than 200 running enthusiasts from across the continent are expected to take a run at the 11th annual event to be hosted, for the first time, on Ladysmith’s Holland Creek Trail.
“We like to run different trails all over the Island,” said race director Nick Walker, of FrontRunners in Victoria.
“The Holland Creek Trail that we’re going to be using is quite a challenging trail, and that’s the whole point of the GutBuster.”
Participants have a choice of running either a 9-km short course, or a 16-km long course. According to Sue Glenn, the town’s fitness and sports programmer, the race will both start and finish at Transfer Beach and connect to Holland Creek Trail via Methuen Street.
“Having the option of the short course and the long course, it gives people that variety and that option whether they want to do the shorter course which is strenuous, but maybe not as strenuous as running up to Heart Lake and doing the Heart Lake loop,” she said.
Glenn warned that trail racing is not for the faint of heart.
“There are a lot more obstacles in trail running, you have to be a lot more aware of what’s going on in your surroundings and in my opinion, it’s a lot more interesting and exciting,” she said.
Prior to the Ladysmith series, races were held at Mt. Tzouhalem in Duncan, Westwood Lake in Nanaimo, and the final race will be held July 23 on Mount Washington. All races are open to all ages and points are awarded to the top 15 finishers in the long course. The FrontRunners GutBuster Series Champion is decided by the cumulative points score in three of the four races, however runners are welcome to participate in any one of the races.
“It’s a great event for Ladysmith to help host,” Glenn said.
Participants who are not already familiar with the course will enjoy a real treat running through the Holland Creek Trail, Glenn said.
“It’s an absolute gem for Ladysmith, it’s absolutely beautiful with the waterfalls and the trails and the wildlife and flora and fauna.”
The race fee for the 9-km race is $35 and the cost for the long course is $40.
Proceeds from the race go to sport-related charities such as Runners of Compassion and Shoes for Youth.
Proceeds are also given to the local partnering running club. Representing Ladysmith is the Ladysmith Striders.
For more gutbusting information, and to register, visit the website at http://www.gutbustertrailrun.com/