Thursday, August 25, 2011

Limerick...Preview of the Kilfinane 5 mile race - Fri 26th Aug 2011

The Kilfinane 5 mile road race is the 7th race in the Ballyhoura Active Series. Located in the south-east of county Limerick, it is within easy access and is just 15 kms or so east of Charleville and the N20 Cork-Limerick road. If you are coming from Limerick City then turning off the N20 north of Charleville and going via Kilmallock is probably the best option. If you are coming from Cork then turn off at Ballyhea and go via Ardpatrick.
If you are coming from the west side of Kilfinane then you should pass the finish line outside the Centra shop.......

....and then take the next right and the hall is up the road on the left.
Entries.........the entry fee is €10.The race starts at 7pm with registration opening at 5.30pm at the Maple Ballroom across from the soccer pitch at Barrack Street, Kilfinane.
From the organisers..."The course has received a Licence from Athletics Ireland and has been officially measured using the Jones Counter method. Race entry is €10 for runners and €5 for walkers. There will be freshments served after the race in the Maple Ballroom with the prize giving taking place on a stage in the centre of the town from 8.30pm. The prizes include the overall top 3 male and female finishers and also the first male for the over 40, 50, 60 age category and the first female over 35, 45, 55 age categories."

Course........Basically, the route goes out in a south-easterly direction on a road heading towards Mitchelstown and  it is slightly uphill. You then return on a minor road going gradually downhill.
The race starts near the centre of the town and the hall where you register.

The photo above near the 1 mile mark is typical of this part of the route. There is a forest and hill on the right hand side of the road. The road twists and turns as it makes it's way gradually uphill. On the left, there is a view of the valley below and you can see the other parallel road where you head back towards Kilfinane.

This is the road junction around the 2.4 mile mark where you turn onto the minor road and head downhill again. This is a lovely quiet country road and there should be little if any traffic. As the slope is gradually downhill, the next 1.5 miles should be very fast.
Around the 4 mile mark, there is a slight climb again before you continue the gradual decent into Kilfinane....

Straight through the crossroads with the grotto to the next T-junction, turn left and then the final sting in the tail...

...the last climb to the finish line outside the local Centra shop.
Overall.....Considering that the hills are gradual and there is plenty of fast downhill running as well, you might expect to post a reasonably fast time over this 5 mile course. The trick is to keep things nice and steady for the first 2.4 miles and keep something in reserve for the second half.

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