WAINWRIGHT’S COAST TO COAST 185 MILES: DAMIAN HALL BECOMES THE FASTEST PERSON TO RUN ACROSS NORTHERN ENGLAND.
WAINWRIGHT’S COAST TO COAST 185 MILES: Ultramarathon runner Damian Hall has set a new record time for the 185-mile Wainwright’s Coast to Coast route. Today our ULTRA RUNNING section bring us the great news from England.
Running west to east, from St Bees on the Irish Sea coastline to Robin Hood’s Bay on the shores of the North Sea, the inov-8 athlete completed the iconic cross-England challenge in an incredible time of 39 hours and 18 minutes.
WAINWRIGHT’S COAST TO COAST 185 MILES
The Wainwright’s Coast to Coast Walk is a 182-mile (293 km) unofficial and mostly unsignposted longdistance foothpath in Northern England., that passes through the Lake District, Yorkshire Dales and North York Moors National Parks, and is hugely popular with hikers.
The Coast to Coast was firtsly described by Alfred Wainwright in a 1973 book A Coast to Coast Walk. The book describes the route in 12 stages, finishing all of them in an area with a close by accomodation, having these stages around 10 to 12 miles and originally intended to be acomplished in 12 or more days depending on the lenth of the stages.
Obviously our main actor in today’s story, Damian Hall, did not used 12 days but 39 hours and 18 minutes, beating Mike Hartley’s previous record, which had stood for 30 years, by 18 minutes.
Moreover, Damian – picked up litter along the way and led a mini beach clean at St Bees the day prior to starting – had a great performance and finished the route in just over one and a half days. The 45-year-old battled sleep deprivation, heavy rain and boggy underfoot conditions along the route, which includes 28,000ft of ascent – almost the equivalent height of Mount Everest.
The 5th placed UTMB in 2018, 7th pace Utra-Trail World Tour 2018 and 7th Lavaredo 2017 among many other FKTs said: “I hiked the Coast to Coast in 2007, but I don’t remember it being as tough as it was this time around! Of all my record attempts this one proved to be the most difficult and the one which forced me to dig the deepest. “Mike’s record was so brilliantly fast that I had to give it absolutely everything I had – and then some more – to beat it. That meant me running faster than I would normally do for such a long distance. I started aggressively and felt good throughout the first day. I got myself about 2 hours ahead of schedule and felt buoyed after receiving support from Mike (Hartley) at Shap. During the night, however, I began to suffer a bit with tiredness and a few stomach issues. The second day saw the heavens open and it became really tough going. I had some wobbles in the last few hours and my fuelling went awry. Tendonitis in my calf didn’t help either and by the end I was shuffling my way towards the sea.”
The dad-of-two from Wiltshire, who is an ultramarathon coach, author and freelance journalist added: “There’s no way I would have broken the record without the support of my team who went above and beyond to feed, water, pace and encourage me throughout – thank you! They also helped collect rubbish along the way and we filled one bin bag.”
The climate change campaigner, in working with Our Carbon, made the challenge, along with his family’s lifestyle for the year, carbon negative. He will offset emissions from vehicles used by his support team by working with Trees Not Tees. Damian also had the letters NPB (which stood for No Planet B) written on his arm and is raising money for Greenpeace.
Damian is supported by UK-based running, hiking and fitness brand inov-8. He used their TERRAULTRA G 270 shoes with world-first Graphene-Grip, clothing and equipment throughout.
Well done Damian and cheers!
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