Monday, 1 February 2010

Red Hill Marathon

One mistake I am glad I made was to do the Red Hill Marathon as my first marathon last year. I remember running up the Scarborough side of Red Hill and people asked me how many marathons I had done and they said I was crazy doing it as a first one, my reply was only to say “Hey pal I am still running it”. It was a pity by the time I got past 30km I was running less and less. Why running it first was a mistake is that people who know me know I have slight OCD tendencies. So now I am stuck having to run it every year that I am able from now on.
33%The percentage increase in the number of runners doing the marathon in 2010 compared with 2009. Fish Hoek Athletic Club must be doing something right.

I also like the idea of having an escape route option of the 6km shorter 36.3km Red Hill Classic and not taking it. This year I noticed a guy at the t-junction asking one of the marshals if he could down grade from the 42.2km to the 36.3km but never got to see what the outcome was.

Slangkop Light House
The Red Hill route is amazing. A bit of a slow start from the Fish Hoek sports complex, then onto the Kommetjie Rd, up Slangkop hill looking down at the Slangkop lighthouse.

I try to run in the middle of the road on this stretch as the camber it quite pronounced.

At the top of Slangkop is the start of a long speedy downhill, through Misty Cliffs to Scarborough, famous for the Camel Rock. Passing though Scarborough is a sneaky uphill up until the t-junction where the race splits between the Red Hill Classic and Marathon.

The out and back section towards Cape Point is mostly 3km of downhill. At the turnaround you are at the lowest point and the uphill does not stop until just before the 30km mark. The top of Red Hill was one of the best water stops ever, sponsored by a coffee shop.

It was too bad that I really was not up to eating muffins only had a slice or two of oranges. I could see that I was faster this year by the options available, last year by the time that.

Running down Red Hill gets to work some different parts of the body. I managed to get to the 30km point faster than Bay to Bay which was a good suprise.

At that bottom of Red Hill it is mostly flat until the Fish Hoek circle. At this point it becomes a mostly mental race.

There are 19 avenues that you need to run past, I like add 1 in my head and count them up one by one as percentages, counting 5%, 10% … 95% each time of cross an avenue. Before you get to 20th avenue you go off the main road and join up with the field. Getting onto the field is not the end there is quite a bit of running until you get to the finish. This year was well organised, plenty of everything: cold water, marshals, scenery and good weather. The only annoyance was the congested start. There definitely were much more people running this year.

Red Hill Marathon route elevation profile and Google Earth route KMZ.
Red Hill Marathon Profile - Click to Enlarge


CillaGee said...

Thanks for this, it's perfect for me to get my head around for this year's race. My comeback marathon, first in 4 years

Taction Mafatle said...

Indeed your commentary provides an insight into what is lying ahead. I like the methodology you used to count the avenues - thanks for that, I will try it 2moro. It is my first Red Hill.