Community is an important thing, it gives us our identity and helps define who we are. It gives us something to be proud about and it helps shape what we do. In Maudabawn, Co. Cavan 10 years ago in May 2010, a group of friends were having a pint and as the talk turned to the recession and the general atmosphere of doom and gloom they decided that they would try and do something to give their local community a boost and create an event which would lift the spirits and create a focus for the summer. With all present having a huge interest in sport and the surrounding area not short of lakes and water, the Cavan Kayakarun was conceived. It was inevitable that there would be kayaking involved and with plenty of rolling roads (‘a reasonably pleasant cycle as its described’) so the course was defined. The whole community bought in to the idea and the event was hugely successful, it created something that the community could all get behind and build a real sense of pride in, a community run event where all the family can participate and the excellent local amenities all used.
There are 3 race distances so something for everybody to get involved in and its all on quiet country roads and trail, an ideal event for a first time participant. The mini/junior race is a fantastic idea and is perfect for those new to the sport and junior athletes.
The new Supreme Body Tester course showcased last year in 2018 was designed by 3 legends of Adventure Racing, Dessie Duffy, Killian Heery and Kieran Cosgrove…all have held the title of National Adventure Racing champion…so is su Save re to be a tough challenge for those aiming to top Killians time from last year or make the podium…but also the aim is to create an event that has a strong emphasis on fun and participation and the course offers a unique challenge for every level of competitor. As Kieran Cosgrove explains “The Kayakarun aims to get people of all ages and levels of fitness involved in sporting outdoor activity. It’s about achieving a goal by finishing the circuit and enjoying the experience of crossing the finish line at the end. We provide a safe, friendly environment, where all the family can enjoy the day. Every participant is a winner,”
There is a strong sense of pride surrounding this race: since its birth 10 years ago it has always been about community, inclusion and showcasing the local area. While those that are leading the pack and racing for top honors may not get a chance to stop and see the sights, those of us who meander a bit slower through a race will get a chance to appreciate the surroundings…and it’s not every day you can admire the crannógs of the Barnagrow lake from a kayak.
But the pride doesn’t stop there. The area has produced some phenomenal athletes and winning the home event, and the 10th anniversary event in particular, will be a big deal. Local athletes will be looking to hit peak on the 10th August and will relish the challenge to beat local rivals as well as the best from around the country and secure the ultimate bragging rights for the year. It’s shaping up to be a cracking race and day and we wouldn’t even begin to speculate who will come out on top or who has been hiding in the long grass waiting for this event to empty the tank!!
Post races there’s a super night in store in Gallonray House where live music will keep you hopping til late….if you still have energy after the day….and you can recall the ups/downs of the day…and how you’d have done better if your brakes weren’t rubbing, or if you had brought the aero bike, or the wind hadn’t picked up when were on the water, or you had to stop to tie your lace
Races like this needs your support, they are locally run, nonprofit and can do so much for a locality and community…Adventure Races in Ireland are facing more challenges than ever this year with insurance difficulties and it can be a major effort to keep an event like these tighter so huge kudos to all at the Cavan Kayakarun for continuing to put on a brilliant event.