Last week we asked for people to write to us and tell us about their Saltmarsh experiences. Forth time finisher Colin Harper’s has hit the keyboard and ‘penned’ us a little review, if you like what you read, have a look at Colin’s blog www.colinsmds.blogspot.com. Over to Colin.
The Saltmarsh will always be special for me as it was my first ever ultra race. It’s probably fair to say that on the 5th of October 2013 neither Saltmarsh or I quite knew what was going to happen but we were both hoping it would work out OK. Certainly from my point of view as a competitor the event organisation was spot on and everything ran smoothly. As a competitor things didn’t go quite as smoothly for me, I started too fast, was wrecked after 20 miles and had no idea how I would get through Day Two. However I did and was immediately hooked and looking (nervously) forward to my next event.As you know I’ve been back every year since and feel proud and honoured to be part of the Saltmarsh family. One of the great things about he event is that sometimes a family has a member who you love, because they are part of your family, but you have to turn a blind eye to their failings – the Saltmarsh has never been that family member, every year the event has been friendly, well supported and of course very well organised.
The family extends beyond the event too. I was out running one Sunday afternoon when I ran past Saltmarsh Ben. Ben recognised me and said hello and we chatted for a while whilst running. Equally there are several people I’ve only ever seen on the Saltmarsh but we chat each year as if the intervening 363 days had never happened.
To move on to Saltmarsh 2016 which I think is what you asked about, one of the things to notice is how much the pace has increased. I was fifth overall individual in 12 hours and 23 minutes, my best ever position and my fastest time – technically I was the first person to finish 4 Saltmarshes
If you look at the results for the first event I would have won by over 30 minutes with that time. The event itself lived up to all expectations in terms of organisation, friendliness and of course the Essex coastline didn’t disappoint. Personally I don’t mind a bit of rain and thunder always makes a dramatic soundtrack for a run – however I have even more respect for the walkers when I was in the pub with beer and food whilst they were finishing in heavy rain and darkness. Another thing, free massages – I’m not sure I can think of another multi-day ultra event that does that for it’s competitors. Other things which are great – the organisers, volunteers, checkpoint staff, RAYNET, Essex Rover Rescue, other competitors, the relay teams, members of the public that shout a few encouraging words as I pass… I’m sorry to anyone I missed, I appreciate each and ever person that makes this event happen.
I could go on for many more pages but if anyone has managed to read this far without falling asleep – well done! I’ll finish by saying all my friends and family know exactly where I will be on the first weekend of October, if they want me at their weddings, parties, celebrations, chose a different weekend – there is no negotiation!
Health and fitness permitting I will see you in 2017 for Saltmarsh 5! Thanks again for another great event,
We’ve all had a few days to recover now and it’s time to review our 4th Saltmarsh75. Each year we’re simply blown away by our participants. Some finish, some don’t, some of you come back (again and again), some don’t, but it truly is a pleasure to meet you all. Anyone that took part is now officially part of the Saltmarsh family and that’s why we say OUR Saltmarsh75.
Back at Saltmarsh HQ, we were talking about our memories from the weekend, trying to work out which bits to write about, we decided that we should ask our Saltmarsh Family to help. So if you fancy sharing your experience with us, please send us an email firstname.lastname@example.org. Depending on how many contributions we get we will either post them all or try to merge a few together. If you have any photos from the day then we’d love to see them too. This one was taken on Saturday afternoon by walker Robin Metheringham just after Bradwell and bit of a cloud burst.
Everyone loves a rainbow, thanks for sending it in Robin.
We’re back at Saltmarsh HQ reflecting on another amazing weekend helping all of our participants achieve something remarkable, whether they did the full 75 miles or not. Its always truly humbling to see people crossing the finish line.
Congratulations to our duo of Sean Ketteridge and Allan Smalls who were joint first home in 11 hours and 1 minute. Local legend Tracy Harrington was first female in 14h 26m taking line honours for the third time. Colin Harper was the first of a handful of people that have completed all 4 Saltmarsh75s in 12h 22m smashing his goal of getting under 13 hours.
Results of the weekend are now live on our partners website https://www.racetek-live.co.uk/website/public_results/. If you spot anything that’s not quite what you think it should be please let us know. If you’re a single day competitor then please click on the stage results button and you will see your times / results on either Day 1 or 2.
The team are frantically unpacking vans and trying to work out what to do with all the items of wet / sweaty gear that we seem to collect. If you’ve lost something get in touch.
Thank to everyone that took part on making this weekend so special, competitors, Essex RayNet, Essex Land Rover Rescue, checkpoint venues, marshals, RaceTek and the race team. See you all in 2017
Things are hotting up here, and we’re not just talking about the unseasonably warm weather. We’re busy busy busy, and this week we’re doing final routechecks, which has been very pleasant unless like Ben you booked yours in for the first wet day in yonks.
To download entry pack documents, please use the link below. Please contact directly on email@example.com if you require a route map (licensing issues and stuff).
I’m sure many of you who have previously entered or helped with the Saltmarsh 75 will remember Vicky…
…well, sadly Vicky left us at Christmas for pastures new. Vicky was our logistics queen, and the lady we relied on to pull all our wonderful volunteers together and us in the right places at the right time.
We miss Vicky.
The good news is that Vicky will be back to help this year, but she’s asked me to gather together volunteers for the weekend.
Saltmarsh 75 would never have happened over the past three years without our amazing cohort of volunteers who do everything from staff checkpoints along the route to provide transportation and catering. We are now looking to recruit volunteers to help Vicky and her trainee logistic replacements to run this year’s event.
so if you can:
• Retain a friendly demeanour and sense of humour in freezing temperatures and torrential rain
• Give up a maximum of 6 hours over the weekend of Saturday 1 and Sunday 2 October 2016
please email firstname.lastname@example.org to let us know you’d like to be involved!
There is a comprehensive remuneration package for all volunteers which includes an official Saltmarsh 75 pin badge (not available in the shops) and all the golden syrup cake you can eat…
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The fourth annual Saltmarsh 75 will take place on Saturday October 1st and Sunday October 2nd.
Once again, prices for 2016′s event have been frozen at the following 2014 prices:
Early Bird Full Weekend: £60
The early bird entry opens on January 4th 2016 and finishes at 5pm, April 1st 2016. The price for full weekend entries go up to £75 after that.
Single Days: £45
Relay Team: £120
Prices include full medical and marshal support, transport of equipment and food to any checkpoint during the weekend, food and drinks at checkpoints, transport back to the start from the finish, and much, much more.
There are camping and food options also available, which you can choose when filling in the form.
The closing date for receipt is Friday 26th August 2015 or earlier if the 200 individual competitor limit is reached.
As always, thank you for your support.
You can also contact us by emailing email@example.com.
We’re delighted to announce that the 4th annual Saltmarsh 75 will take place over the weekend of Saturday 1st and Sunday 2nd October 2016.
Entries will open on Monday January 4th 2016, and a secure online entry and payment form will be available from this website. Prices will be released nearer the time.
If you would like to be kept up to speed with announcements, news or just need a reminder of entry opening, like us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter or sign up for the SM75 newsletter via the Stay Updated box.
See you in October!
If you’ve visited the Saltmarsh 75 Facebook page before then you’ll know that my posts tend to be the lengthy ones. As I’ve been let loose on the blog, I recommend that you go and make yourself a nice cup of tea because we could be here a while.
Are you sitting comfortably? Yes? Good, then I shall begin.
During this year’s volunteer briefings, I mentioned that the Saltmarsh runs on a vast amount of goodwill, and with the dust settling on the 2015 Saltmarsh, it’d be wrong not to take the opportunity to say thank you to a few people. This is by no means a definitive list, if it was, you’d be reading it until the 2016 event.
Finishing times for the 2015 Saltmarsh 75 (including one dayers and relays) are now available, and can be viewed from the links below:
Congratulations to everyone that took part. We love putting this event on so much, and this is due in no small part to the amazing entrants we get every year. 2015 was certainly no exception to this.
And the weather was great.
Congratulations to first man home Chris Seymour, who was 11 minutes quicker over the two days than 2013 winner Paul Nickells. Congratulations also to first lady Maryvonne Hassall, who beat 2013 and 2014 ladies winner Tracy Harrington by 22 minutes.
Some honourable mentions to come, but can we also have a big group hug for 2014 finisher Shawn Leek, whose car broke down on the way to Steeple and therefore couldn’t complete this year’s SM75.
The number of finishers was well up on previous years, with 54% of starters completing the whole 75 miles. This is compared to 39 and 40 % respectively in 2013 and 2014.
Once again, thank you all for taking part in the Saltmarsh 75, and we hope to see you next year.
If you spot any discrepancies in the results, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Veteran of both previous Saltmarsh 75s and Marathon des Sables finisher David Kelly has kindly put together some advice for anyone taking on the SM75 for the first time.
David has been a very vocal supporter of the Saltmarsh 75, and we’re very touched that he’s taken the time to jot his experience down in words. Thanks David!
If anyone other Saltmarshers have any advice they’d like to share, please feel free to send them this way and we’ll add them to the website.
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This is an amazing event that deserves to run and run.
If you are wondering whether you could cope with a 2 day event here are my thoughts having done a bit in the past.
Obviously recovery at the end of day one is critical if you want to start the next morning. A good recovery drink very soon after finishing on day one plus a massage will help (if you are in any fit state to remember!) Eat well and sleep as well as you can that night!
Don’t take any NSAIDs (ibuprofen, diclofenac, aspirin) until you have rehydrated and are passing lots of clear urine.
Compression leggings for calves are reckoned to decrease muscle damage and therefore decrease pain and stiffness on the following day.
Obviously you need to try out everything in training as you don’t want surprises during the event. As we are about to enter the last few weeks now is a great time to try out anything new, equipment, clothing, nutrition, drinks, shoes, socks, backpacks, eye ware, under ware (ladies especially), heart rate monitors, GPS devices etc.
Try to do some training on the actual course, especially the more remote sections. Always carry a phone in case of emergencies, yours or people you may meet.
Try to do some training in cold wet windy weather because despite 3/4 days so far having been fine in past events, October on the North Sea coast could be spectacularly cold wet and windy!
Have a great time training!