On a bit of a whim and driven by my Grizzly experience a few weeks previously which I’d enjoyed enormously (I know the words Grizzly and enjoy don’t fit together well in a sentence!!!) I decided to give the Lulworth Cove ultra a go. Based in Dorset and billed as taking in one of the most beautiful and recognisable stretches of coastline in the country, this was a super tough route running right along the South West Coast Path and totting up over 6,000ft of elevation. 

This epic 33-miler began at 7:30am at the Durdle Door overflow car park with a lot of very cheery, lovely ultra folk despite the misty drizzle and early hour of the day. The run began and took us straight down to the coast and out towards St Alban’s Head and towards Poole via MOD military firing ranges (definitely stuck to the route there!!!) with an unforgiving up and down pattern which continued back inland via farm tracks and a deserted village and letting us have different view back along the coast from where we’d come from to head almost all the way back towards Weymouth, along a pebbly beach and taking in Osmington Mills before our final journey back towards Lulworth Cove.

It was an absolutely stunning route, although the hills were totally relentless; just when you thought there couldn’t be any more, there was another!! However, it was a brilliantly organised and very friendly event and the conditions couldn’t have been better.

I was very pleasantly surprised to come in as second lady in a time of 6:24:54, being 23 overall out of a field of 138 runners. How the winner did in 4:57:42 I will never know – total respect!!!

I came home with a lovely medal, very nice trophy, a very smart buff and a smile on my face. If you’re tempted to give it a go then I’d say do it for sure! It’s a great day out at the seaside.


Categories: Race Report

Joanna Rich

Race reporter and full time muppet fan

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