Organisers of the legendary Dragon’s Back Race™ have today announced that YHA (England and Wales) will be supporting the event in 2015.
The race follows the mountainous spine of Wales, from Conwy Castle in the north to Carreg Cennen Castle in the south. The race is an incredible 5-day journey across wild, trackless, remote and mountainous terrain and is widely acknowledged as one of the hardest mountain races in the World.
Race Director Shane Ohly said, “At the last Dragon’s Back Race in 2012 the event volunteers and many of the competitors stayed at the YHA Conwy before the race and we received a fantastic, warm welcome from the staff, despite staging an impromptu takeover. In 2015, the YHA Conwy will be our official headquarters in the days before the event with all our event personnel staying there. We will also have the competitor registration, kit check and briefing there. It is a great venue and we look forward to returning in June 2015.”
|Above: Competitors, Marshal, the Maelgwn Male Voice Choir and local dignitaries gather in Conwy Castle for the start of the 2012 Dragon's Back Race. © Jon Brooke|
Joe Lynch the Sales and Marketing Director for the YHA continued, “We are delighted to be supporting the Dragon’s Back Race™ and proud that the team have chosen YHA Conwy as their base for this fantastic event. With over 136 hostels throughout England and Wales, YHA strives to create opportunities for everyone to enjoy our great countryside. Not everyone chooses to run 300km with 17,000m of ascent in five days, but everyone staying with YHA can be assured of the essentials for any trip; A warm welcome, excellent hospitality, great food and unbeatable value for money. We wish all of the Dragon’s Back Race™ competitors every success and look forward to welcoming you to YHA Conwy.”
Above: An emotional moment for the winners; Martin Stone and Helene Whitaker (nee Diamantides) at the Carreg Cennen Castle finish line at the legendary 1992 Dragon's Back Race™.
The original Dragon’s Back Race™ happened in September 1992 and was famously won by Martin Stone and Helene Whitaker (nee Diamantides) who together beat an array of the World’s best mountain and ultra runners. This was the first time in the history of mountain running that a woman had beat the best men and it happened at arguably the Worlds toughest race.
Ever since, the Dragon’s Back Race™ was whispered about with a mix of awe and trepidation and with the help of books like Richard Askwith’s ‘Feet In the Clouds’, its reputation had reached legendary status with most fell, mountain and ultra runners by September 2012 when the second Dragon’s Back Race™ happened.
|Above: Steve Birkinshaw. Winner of the 2012 Dragon's Back Race™. © Jon Brooke|
The 2012 race was a huge success with a multi award winning, feature length documentary capturing the brutal pleasure of the race. British mountain running legend Steve Birkinshaw won and incredibly, Helene Whitaker returned after twenty years to finish fourth overall.
Entries for the 2015 Dragon’s Back Race™ are now open but close on the 8th September 2014. CLICK HERE TO ENTER!