Copyright © North Wales Road Runners
A number of races in the off road series are classified as fell races and this obviously carries with it certain risks which members should be prepared for, especially in the case of bad weather. In particular, members should be aware of the necessary kit and experience required.
The Fell Runner’s Association specifies the following kit as being required for Category A Long and Medium races. This would include Tal y Fan, The Gladstone Race and the Penmaenmawr fell race but could also apply to the shorter fell races in poor weather (Moel y Ci, Pipe Dream and Siabod)
Competitors should arrive at races prepared to carry any or all of the following equipment:
Windproof whole body cover
Other body cover appropriate to the weather conditions (this could include waterproof as distinct from windproof whole body cover, hat and gloves in the case of wet, windy or cold weather)
Map and compass suitable for navigating the course
Emergency food (long races)
Note: the race organiser is free to impose additional safety requirements and competitors must be prepared to accept such requirements as a condition of race entry.
Race organisers should be aware of the dangers of hypothermia if injury to runners causes them to stop or slow to a walking pace. Body heat is lost quickly and in cold, wet or windy weather the onset of hypothermia can be very rapid unless sufficient warm clothing is carried.
Races are categorised in terms of difficulty (Category A = steepest and most difficult) and distance.
Moel y Ci (Category B), Pipe Dream (both Cat B) are classified as short races
They are partially marked (but the flags may be hard to spot in poor weather) and require local knowledge
Tal y Fan, The Gladstone 9 (both Cat A) race and Penmaenmawr fell race (Cat B) are classified as medium distance races.
They require some fell running experience, local knowledge and Navigational skills (i.e. the ability to make use of a map and compass and mountain experience to navigate the course, including in bad weather).
From The FRA: “The philosophy of fell running is that it is the competitor, him or herself, who is primarily responsible for their own safety whilst competing.”Extra information about the Safety Requirements are available on the FRA website: http://www.fellrunner.org.uk
3 Short and 3 Long to qualify
PM = Partially marked course; LK = local knowledge required; ER = Experience required; NS = Navigational skills required