West Highland Way CHALLENGE Race
96 Miles - Tough & Rugged
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Safety and Rules



RACE RULES

The following rules/instructions are very important.  Please remember them and follow the agreed process during the race.  All competitors by entering and taking part in the West Highland Way Challenge Race, WHW & Ben Nevis Race and Highland Way 180 Race, agree to follow ALL rules for the entire duration of the event.


1. ANY COMPETITOR WITHDRAWING FROM THE RACE WILL BE REQUIRED TO WITHDRAW AT A 'CHECK POINT.' IF UNABLE TO MAKE IT TO A CHECK POINT, THEN CONTACT THE RACE ORGANISERS BY PHONE AND CONFIRM YOUR LOCATION.  IF POSSIBLE MAKE YOUR WAY TO THE NEAREST MAIN ROAD, WHERE YOU WILL BE UPLIFTED AND TRANSFERRED TO MILINGAVIE.

EACH COMPETITOR ON WITHDRAWING FROM THE RACE MUST HAND THEIR RACE NUMBER TO A RACE MARSHAL.   THIS IS VERY IMPORTANT AND EACH COMPETITOR ENTERS THE RACE ON THIS UNDERSTANDING.  A COMPETITOR WILL STILL BE CLASSED AS IN THE RACE AND UNACCOUNTED FOR UNTIL THEIR RACE NUMBER HAS BEEN HANDED TO A MARSHAL.  A COMPETITORS FAILURE TO CONTACT A RACE OFFICIAL (either in person or by phone) AND HAND OVER THEIR RACE NUMBER COULD RESULT IN POLICE AND MOUNTAIN RESCUE BEING INFORMED THAT A COMPETITOR IS MISSING, SO PLEASE ADHERE STRICTLY TO THIS RULE.  AS SOON AS YOU LET US KNOW, WE (WHW CHALLENGE RACE SUPPORT TEAM) CAN SUPPORT YOU ACCORDINGLY.


2.    Each competitor is required to be aged 18 years, or over on race day.

3.    Race number must be worn at all times and clearly visible (name and number) on your 'chest front' and not on your leg, or back pack.

4.    In the event of unpredictable weather the organisers reserve the right to stop the race, or group competitors into minimum groups of 2 or more for travelling through exposed area. These groups must remain together, or until they are split at a Check Point by a race marshal. The race cut-off time of 35 hours can be extended in adverse weather.

5.   The following items must be carried/worn at all times during the race. 
  • Fully WATERPROOF HOODED JACKET with taped seams (this does not include a Pertex only garment, or other shower proof only garments.  Pertex Shield is acceptable] 
  • WATERPROOF TROUSERS
  • HAT
  • GLOVES
  • HAND SANITISER
  • FACE MASK
  • EMERGENCY WHISTLE 
  • COMPASS
  • INFORMATION SHEET - IN A WATERPROOF BAG. This has Check Point details and the emergency contact numbers and will be given to you at Registration.
  • MAP of the full W.H.W. ('Harveys', or 'Footprint' provide these maps.) or a map of Ben Nevis or East Highland Way if applicable.
  • MOBILE PHONE (fully charged at start of race and 'switched on' for the entire race)
  • Your accurate mobile number must be provided to the race organisers on the Entry Form. If a phone number has changed since submitting your entry form, please advise the race organisers by phone, or email before race day.  Alternatively inform the race organisers at Race Registration.


                                                                                                       
Top of the Devil's Staircase.  Approx. 10.15pm.  Sun is about to set and a second night on the trail is about to begin.
Small emergency rucksack on my back and looking forward to the descent into Kinlochleven guided by a trusty head torch (and back up batteries).



6.   For your SAFETY, at Registration competitors must provide to the organisers a SMALL EMERGENCY RUCKSACK containing a sleeping bag weighing a minimum 800 grams and an orange type, heavy duty, emergency 'Survival Bag'.  This rucksack will be re-issued to the competitor at Check Point 3:  Bridge of Orchy Hall  (35 miles) and must be carried to the Rowardennan Check Point 6, at 68miles .  Please note your 'emergency rucksack' MUST also have capacity for you to transfer ALL essential items listed in point 6 above, when you arrive at the Bridge of Orchy, Check Point.

7.  BEFORE THE RACE all competitors must read all of the information contained in this website.  Please take quality time to read, learn and prepare accordingly.  It will increase your chances of success on race day.  It also helps to ensure the spirit of fairness to all, one team approach and respect to others.

8. No 'support vehicles', or 'support personnel' are permitted within ONE MILE, of the Check Points at: OCHTERTYRE Camp Site (CP4), or BEINGLAS Camp Site ( CP5 ).   A breach of this rule will result in disqualification of the competitor.

9. No 'support vehicles' are to allowed into the Car Park in front of Bridge of Orchy, Fire Station. A breach of this rule will result in the disqualification of the competitor. This area is for firefighters to leave their cars when attending a fire. unauthorised parked vehicles in this can also obstruct the fire tender from leaving the Fire Station. 

10. Due to the high number of competitors taking part in the 3 races and the COVID situation, 'support runners' are only allowed to accompany competitor's from Check Point 2, at Glen Coe Chairlift, as by that time the race field should be spread out and the trail wider. Only ONE 'support runner' should accompany a competitor at any time after Glen Coe Chairlift. A 'support runner' is not allowed to carry any of the competitor's kit, food, water, or fluids.  

12.   SECOND DIVERSION:  Is where the WHW crosses a steam, one kilometer North of the 'Falls of Falloch,' or 700m South after passing the cottage at Derrydaroch. The bridge (at grid 345214) has been washed away. 100 metres before where the bridge crossing was, there is a hardcore road crossing the WHW trail, 'TURN LEFT' up the road, which is new and not on the map and proceed up the hill on the road for 400m with an ascent of 30m.  'TURN RIGHT' after crossing the road/stream bridge and proceed down the heather at the left side of the stream, back down the hill to the WHW trail, to where the bridge was washed away. The race have placed three 2"x2" wooden posts painted flourescent red, to aid navigating the diversion. The Diversion adds approximately 400m to the race route. Aquaint yourself with this diversion on Google Maps
THE BRIDGE IS STILL MISSING, SO THE 'DIVERSION' MUST BE TAKEN

13.  FIRST DIVERSION: THIS DIVERSION IS TO AVIOD WADING THROUGH A SUBSTANCIAL RIVER in Tyndrum. When the WHW crosses the A82 Trunk Road at 'Brodies' shop, 'TURN LEFT ' and proceed down the A82 pavement on the opposite side of the road past the chipper and public toilets (open 24/7) and after the bus bay next to the toilets 'TURN RIGHT'  down the tarmac road heading to Tyndrum Lower Station. After 150 meters on the right side of the road is a wooden post sign at grid 328302. The sign indicates local shops, station and WHW information.  At the sign 'TURN LEFT ' off the tarred road and back onto the WHW track. No extra distance is covered by this safety DIVERSION WHICH MUST BE TAKEN.


14. COVID GUIDE LINES MUST BE ADHEARD TO AT ALL TIMES:

Any Covid related questions shoud be addressed to the RACE APPOINTED  'COVID OFFER' Jim Drummond on Tel:01786 841715, or e-mail him on: whwchallengerace@hotmail.co.uk
 
AT REGISRATION THE FOLLOWING QUESTION SHOULD BE CONSIDERED.

1.    Have you been overseas to a country on the quarantine list in the last 14 days ?

2.    Do you have Covid-19 symptoms, or are feeling unwell ?

3.    Have you been told to self-isolate as part of contact tracing ?

4.    Do you object to your details being provided to 'Track and Trace' if necessary ?

5.    Do you live in an area that has local travel restrictions ?

IF A 'YES' TO ANY OF THE ABOVE 5 QUESTIONS, THEN YOU SHOULD NOT TAKE PART IN THE RACE.

Also:

Face covering  are a requirement when interacting with other people.

The Start, Check Points and Finish are face covering zones.

Hand sanitiser should be used at start, checkpoints and finish. (entrants provide their own)

Social distancing at all times. - 2m between persons and 3m in single file. 
 

OTHER INFORMATION

Any race packs, running packs, bum bags used on arrival at Bridge of Orchy (CP3) can be left and will be returned to the finish at Milngavie.   This safety measure is to ensure that waterproof, windproof and insulation cover are provided to the competitor until help arrives, in the event of the competitor being immobilised.

Note for NOVICES: Please don't turn up with heavy rucksacks which have everything including the kitchen sink.  There is no need during the race to be carrying a rucksack weighing more than 10lbs, including water.  We (the race organisers) strongly recommend you train with your running pack and safety rucksack.  Get familiar with them.  Learn how to best pack your kit and how it feels on your back.  Then come race day you will be sorted and in a good frame of mind. 
FOOD, DRINKS, Spare shoes, towels, change of clothing, extra torches and batteries, etc. can be put in the 'drop bags'.
Also because you are being provided with hot water at CP's, then Pot Noodles, pasta Mug Shots, dehydrated food, can be put in your Drop Bags (with an extra cup and spoon), especially for the night CP's when it's much colder and REMBER YOUR TORCHES and SPARE BATTERIES.  Please be smart and make effective use of the 'Drop Bag' option. Smart drop bag planning can considerably increase your chances of finishing the race. Remember during the night the temperature can be 25 degree Centigrade below daytime temperatures, so have spare clothing in the night Drop Bag locations.
Also, the secret of ultra endurance races is to check an accurate weather forcast 24 to 36 hours before the start of the race, then estimate when you are likely to be at each Check Point and ascertain how long it will take between the C.P.'s. If it's a race you haven't done before then you can get an idea of the times between CP's from previous competitors 'SPLIT TIME RESULTS'.  If for example: if it's 4 hours for a leg and the time will be from 12:00noon to 04:00pm and the weather is for a  roasting hot, sunny day, then don't carry just 0.5 litre of fluid for the 4 hours, or you will be in serious trouble from dehydration. The race bottles, or hyra pack you carry during the race should be able to hold the maximum fluid estimated for the longest leg of the race. All to often we see people coming into C.P.'s and retiring as they have suffered due to using up their water 2 hours earlier. The same thought is also required for clothing during the various legs especially if its raining, blowing a gale and the path is a virtual stream, then make sure you are wearing enough clothes to stay comfortable, 'any fool can be cold'
Remember the colder and wetter you get the slower you get, then you don't produce as much heat, so you get even colder and slower, IT'S A VICIOUS CIRCLE which usually ends in hypothermia and a withdrawal.   


If the weather forecast is for wet, cold, windy conditions. Then it is highly recommended to have a complete change of clothing in the Bridge of Orchy and Rowardennan 'drop bags'. Remember you will also be 2,000ft up a mountain and the weather is totally different to the valley floor and can even be frosty, or snow.
Plus:  In cold, wet conditions put extra food, in your rucksack to eat while moving between Check Points, you will need it. 

REMEMBER THE 7  'P' RULE:- 'Poor Planning and Preparation Provides Piss Poor Performance'. MOST ULTRAS  ARE LOST, OR NOT COMPLETED, DUE TO POOR LOGISTICS AND PLANNING. 

REMBER MOST OF THE CHECK POINTS ARE IN THE 'OPEN AIR' ( due to COVID), SO WEAR SUFFICIENT CLOTHES AND HAVE MONEY FOR THE INVERSNAID FERRY TO TARBERT IF REQUIRED, OR TO GO INTO A HOTEL, OR CAFE, TO GET A HEAT AND SOME HOT FOOD IF REQUIRED.


AS PER RACE RULE NUMBER 8:  PLEASE READ ALL INFORMATION ON THE WEBSITE.  IN PARTICULAR THE 'FURTHER RACE DETAILS' WEB PAGE.  THERE HAVE BEEN MANY CHANGES TO THE WEBSITE AND RACE DETAILS SO IT IS IMPORTANT ALL COMPETITORS (Experienced Ultra Competitors to Novices) TAKE TIME TO READ ALL THE INFORMATION.  THANKS IN ADVANCE FOR YOUR SUPPORT.



The handsome Arnold brothers!  Andy (back) has completed many of the toughest Ultra events in Europe and 4 successive WHW Challenge Races (great effort).  Steve (front) has recently taken up long distance events.  2019 race was his first big Ultra.  This photo captures the guys with 30 miles achieved and 66 miles to go!  Big smiles!  Steve & Andy worked as a team.  They had ALL the right gear for tough wet and windy conditions later in the race (very smart guys, good planning).  Their strategy was not to achieve PB's and get exhausted but to stay smart and pace it out.  They both finished the race in 32 hours and 36 minutes.  Excellent effort!  They aim to be back for future races.



The beauty of a new day dawning!  Sunrise near Conic Hill.
The variety of nature and changing light conditions whilst enjoying the race are simply wonderful.