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FAQ

Are running poles allowed in the races?

Yes, poles are allowed but may not be used in the start and finish area or on the first 2km  including the climb up Bray Head.

Poles should also not be used while overtaking or while being overtaken.

When using the poles remember it is your responsibility to avoid hitting or tripping up other runners etc.

Please only use poles if you are experienced and well practiced in using them whilst running and walking

Covid 19

We have gotten revised relaxation of restrictions from the government and we are now confident that the event will be able to proceed as planned on Sat 25th September 2021

There are likely to be some Covid related changes to the bib pickup, aid stations and finish for 2021 but the event will take place as generally planned 

All places are filled, the name and distance change deadline has passed and no new places are being released

Thank you for your continued support of the event

Are there any travel / accommodation packages available?

Ecotrail Wicklow has teamed up with EI Adventures to create 4 days packages (3, 4 or 5 stars options) to help you make the most of the event and the fantastic destination that is County Wicklow. All packages include three nights’ accommodation from September 24th to 27th , all transfers, Day Tour of Wicklow (Friday), and opportunity to discover Dublin. 

More information about Ecotrail 3* Package

More information about Ecotrail 4* Package

My ITRA result details need to be amended - can you help?

Once results are send to ITRA they take ownership of all amendments. Please email them directly on contact@itra.run for changes to your ITRA results.

Do you provide live tracking facilities?

You can set up live tracking for yourself using the RaceONE app. Plese read this article for full details.

 

Note this does not provide a live leaderboard or give you any indication of your position. Not everyone in the race uses the tracker. It is for individual tracking only.

Please do not attend the event as a supporter unless it is permitted as permitted and advised at the time of the event

What are the prizes / what time is the prize-giving?

The top-3 men and women in each race and the 1st placed category* finishers from outside of the top-3 (men and women) will receive a trophy crafted from Wicklow Granite by local mountain runner Richard Healy of Richard Healy Sculptures

Prizes are given on the 'one person, one prize' principle so should an age category winner finish in the top-3, the second placed person in the category will receive the category winners prize.

Please note runners who change to shorter events due to missing cut-offs are not eligible for prizes.

 

*What are the categories?

Age categories are O40, O50, O60, and O70 for men and women. In order to qualify for a prize a category must have at least two finishers. Should there be less than two finishers in a category, the lone person in that category competes instead in the lower category (i.e. if there is only one person over-70 in a race, they compete in the over-60 category). The male and female winner of each category receives the prize.

Note there are no separate Senior (under-35), O35 or junior categories. Any juniors in the race compete in the overall (under-40s) category.

 

What time are the prize-givings?

For 2021 event our Prize Presentation Schedule will be dictated by prevailing social distancing restrictions in place at time of the event.

It is likely that we will endeavour to present prizes as soon as athletes have crossed the finish line to ensure there is no need to stay on in the Finish Line Area

Where this is not possible then prizes will be posted out to winners

 

Where can I park?

Official race parking will be available at Presentation College from 8:00 to 18:00. Entry fee will be €5 and all parking proceeds go directly to Presentation College. This car park will be marshalled. It's a 1.2 km (15 min walk) from parking to start/ finish area. 

FREE parking option 

A free parking option is available at Greystones Park and Ride. From here you must walk 650 m (8 min) to Greystones Railway station and take the DART (a 9 minute train drive) to Bray (Daly) and then walk the final 600m (8 min) from Bray railway station to the Martello Hotel.

Leave 30 minutes from time you park to closure of your race's collection as a minimum to be on the safe side if you avail of this option. Greystones DART runs from 6:30 in the morning. Check the time table for best connection for you and book tickets online for fastest trip.

This option is recommended for participants travelling from the South.

Important note for 80 km runners

80km runners should avail of the many public parking spots available along the seafront promenade including three designated car parks as the Presentation College car park will not be open ahead of thier race start. 

  • Bray Town Council Car Park (North part of promenade): 9 minute walk to collection / start
  • Cliff Walk Car Park (south part of promenade): 13 min walk to collection / start
  • Bray (Daly) DART station (car park 1): 7 minute walk to collection / start

 

There's no parking in front of the Martello. Alternatively, park at Greystones Park and Ride

Please ensure you have paid for parking for the duration or risk being fined / clamped.

How can I use public transport to get to the start line?

The best option to get to Bray is to use the DART line.

DART (RAIL)

The Dublin Area Rapid Transit  (DART) system is an electrified commuter rail railway network serving the coastline and city centre of Dublin and the best and most eco-friendly way to get to the start of our race.

The nearest station to the start line is Bray (Daly) which is a 700m (8 min) walk from registration in the Martello and the start line. For full timetables access the Dublin Commuter timetable. The relevant time table is on page 22: Dublin - Bray / Gorey ( (Saturday). To book your ticket use this page.

Anyone travelling from the south can take the DART from Greystones starting from 6:30 in the morning. It is a 9 minute train journey from Greystones to Bray.

 

Important for 80 km runners only!

80 km runners should avail only of the following departure from Dublin:

  • 6:26 from Dublin Heuston
  • 6:55 from Dublin Connolly
  • 7:00 from Dublin Pearse

 

6:55 departure from Dublin Connolly (6:26 from Dublin Heuston) which arrives in Bray at 7:39 which is too late for the 80km start time.

Only use the DART if you are entered one of out later starting events (45k, 29k ot 18k)

From the south, the earliers departure is 6.30.

Factor in a 650m walk (8 min) from Greystones Park and Ride to the Greystones Railway station if you arrive by car.

 

Will there be drop-bags allowed on the course?

No

You are expected to carry everything you require for the duration of the race including food.

Water is available at the advised location for refil of your container only.

Please do not leave bags on the route as this is against race rules and will result in disqualification.

Personal/external support with provision of drinks, food, clothing, etc on the route is strictly forbidden.

Use of shops/cafes along the course is permitted.

We need to ensure the event is fair for all participating and external support is not "fair play".

Is there Hi-res maps of the route available for download so I can recce the route in advance?

East West Mapping have provided official maps for our four races:

 

Please note these files represent the 2019 route (the 2021 route is slightly different). Updated maps may be available in the final week of the race but if not rely on the GPX files instead.

The best printed map that may be used for reference is that for "Wicklow East" as supplied by East West Mapping

Please do not attempt to run the sections passing through private lands at any time unless they are on agreed public access routes  as this could lead to our race losing access to these sections.

Specifically, you must follow only the waymarked path through Kilruddery Estate / Belmont outside of race day and you must enter the Powerscourt Waterfall park only through the gate lodge (where you must pay admission fee). 

When in doubt, please stay out thanks!

 

What type of running shoes are recommended for the EcoTrail Wicklow event?

Trail shoes are strongly recommended for all distances in the EcoTrail Wicklow event

Regular road running shoes are not suitable for the mix of trail surfaces that are included in all distances.

These trails include significant sections of gravel, rocks, roots, grass and most likely mud particularly in case of recent wet weather.

There are some short sections of tarmac but these are relatively insignificant apart from in the 81km event

Do i need to have completed a qualifying event to participate in the 80km Eco Trail Wicklow event and are there event cut-offs?

We do not have any mandatory qualifying event for the 80km course.

However, we strongly recommend that you should have successfully completed at least one 50+km off road running event in preparation for this significantly challenging event.

There are very strict cutoffs for the event at the 24km, 39km, 65km and 73km points as shown below so a mimimum average pace of just over 9mins/km is needed to make these cutoffs.

If you do not make the cutoff at the 24km mark you will be directed to complete the 46km route - You will be given a finish time for that route but will not be considered for prizes

If failing to make any of the other cutoffs you will be removed from the course and transported back to the finish when our resources permit.

Your may arrange your own transport if dropping out of the race but the race organisation must be notified properly in this case and you must return you timing chip to an event marshal or preferable tot he finish line officials if you are dropping out of the race - No Exceptions!

Cut Offs for 80km event:

Start at 07:30

1st Cutoff at 24km - 3h 45mins

If reaching here after 11:15 Noon runners will be directed onto 45km course 

2nd Cutoff at 39km (Roundwood aid station): - 6 hours

If reaching here after 13:30 hrs runners must retire from race

3rd Cutoff at 65km  (Sugarloaf aid station):- 10 hours

If reaching here after 17:30 runners must retire from race

4th Cutoff at 73km ( Belmont water station) - 11 hrs 15mins

If reaching here after 18:45hrs runners must retire from race

Finish line cut off is at 20.00 - 12hrs 30mins

Anyone arriving at the finsih line after this time will be recorded as DNF on race results

These cut-off restrictions are quite onerous.

Please Do Not Enter This 80km Event unless you are adequately trained and experienced to safely complete the full course comfortably within the allowed time limits

Do these races offer ITRA points to qualify for other major international events?

Yes - The Eco Trail Wicklow event earn ITRA points as follows for successful completion within the cut-off times:-

19km - 1 Point

30km - 1 Point

46km - 2 Points

80km - 3 Points

Where and when is Race Sign On?

Our Race HQ is close to the Bandstand and in front of The Martello Hotel on Bray seafront.

This is ~5 mins walk from the DART / Train Station

All participants must have registered online prior to entry closing - No On Day / Late Entry will be possible

All participants must sign on in order to collect their race bibs and timing chips on or Saturday morning - times will be advise in final race briefing document. Please bring your own pen in 2021!

Participant Sign-on and collection of Race Bibs & Timing chips will be at the following times:

 

Saturday 25th September - From 06:30 -> 10:40

Race sign on for each event will close 20 mins before race start time

What will be supplied at aid stations and where will they be located?

We will have Water Stations (WS) and all participants are advised to be self sufficient in term of race nutrition fo rour 2021 event

At Water Stations (WS) there will be water refill points only for 2021

Locations of WS are as follows:-

19km Event:- WS at 12km

29km Event:- WS at 14km, WS at 22km

46km Event:- WS at 14km, WS at 31km. WS at 39km

80km Event:- WS at 14km, WS at 31km, WS at 39km, WS at 44km, WS at 52km, WS at 65km, WS at 74km

Note: Between WS at 14km and 31km on 46km and 80km routes there are some naturally occuring water sources which participants may choose to use at their own risk

There will be No Drop Bag Facility for any of the events - You should carry all food you require for the duration of your event

Participants are reminded of the need to carry liquid with them through the race and to have a water container for refill at our aid and water stations as no containers will be provided.

Please ensue any rubbish you wish to dispose of is disposed in an appropriate place at one of the Aid Stations or at the finish

 

Can I run part / the entire route in advance of the race?

Most of the route is on national waymarked trails and can be run by the public any time you should wish to do so.

A few sections cross private land only opened specifically for EcoTrail Wicklow.

Please do not attempt to run these sections at any time as this could lead to our race losing access to these sections.

Specifically, you must follow only the waymarked path through Kilruddery Estate / Belmont outside of race day and you must enter the Powerscourt Waterfall park only through the gate lodge (where you must pay admission fee). 

When in doubt, please stay out thanks!

What's the start and finish line like?

The  start and finish line is at the Victorian band-stand on the sea promenade in Bray across from the Martello Hotel.

This scenic area is currently being fully refurbished.

You will run along the promenade for 800m as you begin and end your journey to Bray Head and beyond.

I want to book in a large group? How can I do this?

A group booking facility is currently in development and will be ready towards the beginning of May 2019 should you need it.

Groups can of course register individually at our registration link currently

Please email us if you need further asistance.

Will the routes be closed to the public?

No.

You can expect to encounter other trail and road users along your journey and show them the same courtesy you would like to receive under similar circumstances.

On all road sections stay aware of traffic and follow marshals instructions at all times particularly at road crossing points.

You may even be so lucky to encounter some of the Irish wildlife and livestock: fox, hare, rabbits, deer, badgers, squirrels, sheep, and wild goats all make their home in the National Park so share your journey and enjoy the experience. 

Who gives way on sections where the out and back route is the same?

The general rule in Irish trail and mountain races is that descending runners always have right of way as they are more at risk when changing direction or braking whilst descending. 

If you encounter runners ahead of you on a single-track section, it is considered courteous to make way. 

In practice there will be very little overlap of runners meeting on narrow trails but giving way is advised .

If faster runners from a longer event approach you from behind please also move to one side where possible and allow them to overtake safely.

Please do not attempt to overtake anyone on a narrow section of trail unless there is space to do so and / or the slower runner has indicated that you should pass.

Are walkers permitted?

Walkers can take part in the 19 km, 30km route if they are confident of completing the route before 17:00.

Walkers and runners need to be able to make the cutoffs for the 46km & 81km routes which are provisionally set at:

46km route:

Must pass Sugarloaf Aid Station (14km) within 3 hours (By 12:00 Latest) on out leg or else be directed to complete the 30km route back to Bray

Must Pass Sugarloaf Aid Station (31km) within 7 hours (16:00 Latest) on return leg or retire from race

81km route:

Must pass Sugarloaf Aid Station (14km) within 3 hours (By 10:30 Latest) on out leg or else be directed to complete the 30km route back to Bray

Must pass Wicklow Way Checkpoint (24km) within 3h 45' (11:15 Latest) on out leg or else be directed to complete the 46km route back to Bray

Must reach the Roundwood Aid Station (39km) within 6 hours (13:30 Latest) on outward leg or retire from race

Must leave the Roundwood Aid Station (44km) within 6 hours 45 mins (14:15 Latest) on return leg or retire from race

Must Pass Sugarloaf Aid Station (65km) within 10 hours (17:30 Latest) on return leg or retire from race

Must Pass Belmont Water Station (73km) within 11 hours 15 mins (18:45 Latest) on return leg or retire from race

Note for 81km participants:

If you feel you will be in danger of failing to meet any of the later cutoffs you may elect to complete the 46km route by notifying the marshals at the Wicklow Way Checkpoint (Km 24) and the timing officials at the finish line.

You will be given a finish time for the  46km event but will not be eligible for any prizes 

Anyone leaving Sugarloaf Aid Station on return leg of 81km route after 17:30 must have a working headtorch or will not be allowed to contine in the race

Are the time limits / cut-offs strict? Can I continue after the race has officially ended?

Cutoffs will be strictly enforced on each route to ensure all participants will complete courses in the time available.

Those not making cutoffs will be allowed to complete a shorter route if the course layout permits.

Continuing on your own after official retirement is not permitted. 

Participants need to be able to make the cutoffs for the 46km & 81km routes which are provisionally set at:

46km route:

Must pass Sugarloaf Aid Station (14km) within 3 hours (By 12:00 Latest) on out leg or else be directed to complete the 30km route back to Bray

Must Pass Sugarloaf Aid Station (30km) within 7 hours (16:00 Latest) on return leg or retire from race

81km route:

Must pass Sugarloaf Aid Station (14km) within 3 hours (By 10:30 Latest) on out leg or else be directed to complete the 30km route back to Bray

Must pass Wicklow Way Checkpoint (24km) within 3 hours 45 min (11:15 Latest) on out leg or else be directed to complete the 46km route back to Bray

Must reach the Roundwood Aid Station (39km) within 6 hours (13:30 Latest) on outward leg or retire from race

Must leave the Roundwood Aid Station (44km) within 6 hours 45 mins (14:15 Latest) on return leg or retire from race

Must Pass Sugarloaf Aid Station (65km) within 10 hours (17:30 Latest) on return leg or retire from race*

Must Pass Belmont Water Station (73km) within 11 hours 15 mins (18:45 Latest) on return leg or retire from race

Note for 81km participants:

If you feel you will be in danger of failing to meet any of the later cutoffs you may elect to complete the 46km route by notifying the marshals at the Wicklow Way Checkpoint (Km 24) and the timing officials at the finish line.

You will be given a finish time for the 46km event but will not be eligible for any prizes 

*Anyone leaving Sugarloaf Aid Station on return leg of 81km route after 17:30 must have a working headtorch or will not be allowed to contine in the race

How much of the routes move through urban areas?

The routes start in the town of Bray and passes briefly through two other villages: Kilmacanogue (29, 46 and 81 km only) and Roundwood (81 km only). The rough proportion of the route that takes place running in urban areas are:

  • 19 km: 11%
  • 30 km: 17%
  • 46 km: 11%
  • 81 km: 7%

 

The urban sections are very scenic such as the Bray seafront promenade encapsulating the start and finishing stretch of each race.

What part of the route is on tarred roads?

The current estimated percentage of the routes on tarred roads: 

  • 18 km: 13%
  • 28 km: 23%
  • 45 km: 22%
  • 80 km: 21%

 

Much of these sections are parkland paths rather than actual roads and road sections are generally scenic country roads.

The longest single stretch of road is the 2.5 km leading into the midway stop at Roundwood on the 80 km.

For the shorter distances tarred sections are only 400m to 1 km in length.

Is there a finishers medal or tshirt for the event?

No Medal will be presented in 2020

Event entrants in all four race distances will receive a tshirt as part of their entry fee unless they have opted to have a tree planted instead - Details of the "Tree instead of a Tee" option HERE.

All finishers will recieve a finishers memento (not a medal) which you will hopefully find useful and enjoy using both at the finsh line and afterwards

How accurate are the distances/how are they measured?

We aim to provide accurate distances for all event but being a trail event with significant off road and elevation gain and loss means that these distances cannot be guaranteed accurate to the nearest few meters.

Distance and elevation is first measured in a mapping software and then confirmed on the ground by a Stryd foot-pod - currently the gold standard in measuring trail races and significantly more accurate than GPS. 

In general most GPS watches will come close to the official measurements but it depends on your GPS software, the satelitte coverage in your area, the recording mode you have selected on your watch or phone, and how well you run the 'optimal line' on the trail. Our official course measurers put great care to run the optimal lines while measuring the routes with the foot-pod

The foot-pod contains an accelerometer which measures exactly how far the pod moves across space in three dimensions (forwards/backwards, side to side, and up and down) providing nearly 100% accurate readings even where there is poor satellite coverage. So should you find that your GPS recording is slightly different than official course distance and elevation it is likely a combination of GPS inaccuracy and not having run the optimal line on the trails (such as when you run the outside of bends instead of taking the straight line from the middle of each curve in the bend - not always an option when you are racing or tired).

Can I change my race distance after entering event?

 

It is possible to change to a shorter race distance up until 31st of August  as long as the shorter race you wish to join is not sold out.

Please note you will not be refunded the difference in price if you avail of this option. 

To change to a longer race, you need to cancel your existing order  and place a new order for the longer race.

Are the courses marked/how are the courses marked?

The courses are marked with a mixture a flags, tape, and biodegradable spray paint.

As a general rule the course will be marked at every junction or other area where you could be in doubt where to go.

Navigational skills are not necessary but it is vital that you remain aware of the need to foolloow the route marking and not assume that everyone that is ahead of you has done so.

If you reach a junction that has no race marking then you should retrace your steps until you find a junction with route marking and follow route from there 

Whilst we will have some marshals out on the course at critical points like road crossings points, most trail junction will not be marshaled so you are responsible for following  the marked route.