The Inside Track – Westport Sea 2 Summit

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The Inside Track – Westport Sea 2 Summit

Sea 2 SummitAll roads head west this weekend for Sea 2 Summit, the final event of the Adventure Racing calendar for 2017!!!

Sea2Summit has 2 routes, the longer Supreme route and the shorter Spirit route. Both routes are fast and for the most part on sealed road (except for the Croagh Patrick section). The first and last runs on both courses are between the Castlecourt hotel and the point soccer pitch (bike transition) and follow the Distillery road, Green way all the way along the banks of the Quay to the soccer pitch. Run 1 is mostly gradually downhill except for a short section when you leave the green-way where there is a short sharp climb for about 200m….but then obviously the final run comes back more or less along this route so the final 2k is a gradual uphill drag before you hit the finish line…the start of the last run goes a little bit off road for about 400m, nothing too much to worry about there.

Cycle 1 is the same for both routes…collecting your bike at the soccer pitch transition area you head out to Murrisk, it’s 8k to the CP car park…so you rack your bike there and head up The Reek, to the shoulder if you are on the Spirit course or the very top if you are on the Supreme route. Most of this is fairly technical so take your time and watch your footing…and keep an eye out for runners coming down the hill at speed, I have no idea who has right of way in these situations but both people could end up hurt! If the day is nice and no clouds the view from up top is amazing and you can see out over Clew Bay…on a cloudy day you can just about see your feet!

Sea 2 SummitBack on the Bike after Croagh Patrick the Spirit Cycle 2 takes a relatively flat route back to the soccer pitch transition area but the Supreme Cycle 2 heads off towards Maum…after about 10k the Maum climb awaits…although the final 100m is steep and about 20% in places it’s the steady climb up to that point which takes it out of the legs, what’s left in them after The Reek that is! No shame at all in getting off the bike and walking/jogging the final steep bit, you actually might save some energy by doing this and you won’t really lose any time here. After that it’s all more or less flat (well flat-ish) all the way back to Westport…although what gets me every year is the Welcome to Westport sign which makes you think you are there but you have another 5-6k yet to go!!

Hop off the bike and the final 4k back around the greenway can be a killer, there’ll be plenty of people walking by this stage, and there is welcome relief when you turn at the top with 200m to go and it’s all downhill to the finish line!!

Remember: Registration opens at 3pm on Friday and Bikes must be collected by 5pm on Saturday from transition point


Tip 1: Park at your accommodation if possible before heading to registration, the hall is on the way in to the town and it can be hard to get parking close by, you don’t want to be rushing too much collecting the number and forgetting something.

Tip 2: Bring a head-torch or flashlight to the bike drop. It will be dark and there isn’t great street lighting where you will be parking so useful to have light to make sure everything is

Tip 3: You won’t have access to your bike the morning of the race so don’t forget to leave everything you need with the bike at the Friday evening bike drop – so helmet, full water bottles, cycling shoes (if you are wearing them!), repair kit etc

Tip 4: It may rain on Friday night so when you drop your bike use a plastic container box to store all your stuff at the bike rack…so nice dry helmet and gloves etc when you get to the bike!

Tip 5: At the Maum climb it is often better to dismount the bike and walk the last 50-100m…you won’t lose more than a few seconds and you’ll actually use less energy…there is still a bit to go after this so no point blowing out here for the sake of trying to stay on the bike for these 50metres!

Tip 6: Its the last race of the season, go to the after party, let the hair down on Saturday night and enjoy Westport

Tip 7: Make sure you follow us on Facebook to get all the inside information on adventure races across Ireland…


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About the Author:

Kerry native Padraig has been living in Dublin/Meath for past 20 years. Hanging up the GAA boots about 8 years ago, he has completed an unknown amount of races including 15 marathons across Ireland, UK and the US with a PB of 3hr 39min. Discovering Adventure Racing a few years ago was a game changer for Padraig and as a veteran of 20+ adventure races, he is always looking for a new challenge, the tougher the better! At home on both a road or mountain bike, he can be found most weekends running up or down a mountain somewhere! Big plans for the year ahead already having taking part in the most extreme adventure race in Ireland ‘The Race’ and with the inaugural Quest 24 event in his native Kerry in the pipeline.

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