West Highland Way CHALLENGE Race
96 Miles - Tough & Rugged
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Background and Inspiration

The West Highland Way Challenge Race was set up in 2013 by several of the very experienced racers of the West Highland Way.  These guys have spent days, weeks, months, years on the trails and hills of Scotland.  They have plenty of experience and most probably tens of thousands of tough trail miles in their legs.  They love the sport, the adventure, the nature, the challenge and (maybe most of all) the camaraderie of trail running and endurance events.

They also really enjoy encouraging and supporting others (from complete novice to seasoned ultra runner) to get involved and give running, jogging or walking the West Highland Way a go.

Many of the founders of The West Highland Way Challenge Race have raced the WHW over 20 times.  They are very experienced so they know the challenges competitors will encounter in terms of the terrain and especially with regard to weather conditions on the route.

So, from all of this experience the founders of the West Highland Way Challenge Race were inspired to create a race that welcomed and encouraged runners, joggers, walkers and anyone in between.  Offer them all a friendly, inclusive event and the opportunity to give an ultra event a good go on the glorious West Highland Way long distance trail.

They also wished the race to be fully supported by the race organisers, thus removing the need for every competitor to plan for, pay for and provide their own individual support crew of Driver, Support Runner, Support Car and the provision of drinks to the competitor and food and drinks to the support crew.  With this ethos in mind, as soon as a competitor arrives at race Registration to their Finish or transport 'drop off after the race at Milngavie Train Station. the WHW Challenge Race organisers provide everything including the movment of competitors 7 drop bags during the race and their Finish Bag to Milngavie.  This helps to make the event as affordable and hassle free as possible for UK, European and International competitors.

Competitors reaching the summit of The Devil's Staircase in the 2016 race.  Well done to everyone again who took part.
The sunshine and heat that year made for a very tough race but hey ...... what about those sunrises and sunsets?  Epic!

Their aim is to allow competitors to race without requiring a support runner, a support driver, a support vehicle, or the entrants having to provide their own food and drinks, additionally the competitors can provide their own food and this can be conveyed in their 'drop bags'.  Also to have a West Highland Way Ultra race that has sensible check point cut-off times to allow a finish and also to avoid over stringent entry requirements.

Simply put, just turn up, do the run or walk with food and drink supplied, without imposing on others and at low cost.

And of course the founders in setting up the Challenge race wished for all involved to have a huge amount of fun and adventure and celebrate the one team approach...

The event has already grown from small beginnings
  • 2014 welcomed 5 competitors from Scotland and England.
  • 2015 welcomed 11 competitors including runners from UK, Australia, Belgium and Denmark.
  • 2016 welcomed 67 competitors took on the challenge including many from UK, Northern Ireland, Europe and one competitor from Nepal.
  • 2017 welcomed 77 competitors from UK, Europe, UAE, Northern Ireland and Australia.
  • 2018 welcomed 110 competitors from UK, Europe, Australia, USA and Mexico.
  • 2019 welcomed 94 competitors from UK, Europe, Mexico and USA.
  • 2020 - Held in October, 34 competitors started and 18 finished.  Due to COVID. 115  'Carried Over' to the 2021 race. 
  • 2021 welcomed 140 competitors in the 3 races with 87 finishers.   

Enjoying the sunshine and views before the descent into Inveroran.  Yep, you can just run the event and chase down a very fast time or achieve a much better PB.  Good luck to you if you adopt this approach on race day.  Also, if you are going steady and are ahead of the cut off times, you can stop and take it all in.  The route allows you to enjoy some of Scotland's and Great Britain's most stunning outdoor scenery.  Good luck to all (runners/joggers/walkers) on future race days!

Final thoughts

Thanks again to all who inspired this event to begin.

Thanks to all who celebrate and stay true to the ethos and aims of The West Highland Way Challenge Race.

Thanks again to all who have made it happen year after year, for the last 8 years.

And lastly, a huge thank you to all the competitors for choosing our event and giving the challenge of The West Highland Way a good go.

All being well, we hope to organise many more successful West Highland Way Challenge Races.  We welcome and hope to see you on the start line.