This year’s event started from Wasdale and saw 133 competitors take on the iron-distance race, which included steeper ascents than any Ironman-branded event. Eventual winner was Ryan Brown from Effingham, Surrey, in 13 hours and 51 minutes.
In a new partnership with YHA (England and Wales), organiser Mark Blackburn has designed the 2016 route to start from the YHA Ambleside, at the head of Windermere. On June 6, 2016, competitors will swim twice round Seamew Crag island in Windermere, and then cycle all the Lake District passes on the route of the famed Fred Whitton challenge, some 112 miles. The marathon run of 26 miles will take the athletes out and back to the top of Scafell Pike via Elterwater and Great Langdale.
The total ascent on the cycle and run routes is 5150m, the highest in the world, with a projected winning time of four hours longer than Norway’s Norseman extreme race. One of 2015’s finishers, James Cooper, said: “It amazed me how we all managed to go through hell with a smile on our faces.”
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Mark Blackburn said: “We are thrilled with the new arrangement with YHA which will mean that our race will be much more accessible to competitors from all over the world. It will be another great sporting event for Windermere, Ambleside and the Lake District.”
The race will also support YHA’s bursary fund for disadvantaged young people, Breaks for Kids, with £5 from each entry will going to the cause. Earlybird entries are now open at www.wasdalex.co.uk/index.php/enter-2016.