Following a highly successful inaugural event earlier this year, the acclaimed Brooks Trail Run Festival will return to the flanks of Mount Baw Baw on the 8-10 March long weekend in 2014, with entries to the three day celebration of off-road running now open.
A unique three day outing on the trail running event calendar, the Brooks Trail Run Festival is the only trail event that combines a fantastic line-up of competitive runs with plenty of off-trail activities in the form of seminars, presentations and trail running films along with a uniquely social atmosphere, with most participants staying for the duration in Baw Baw village accommodation.
“We want to not only showcase what we believe to be some of the best single-track running there is to be had in the country,” says Event Director, Grant Seamer, “but also to celebrate the holistic aspects of the trail running lifestyle and the passion people have for it as their chosen sport. With that in mind we will be jamming the event program with a bunch of great activities from technical training sessions to nutrition seminars, inspirational talks and trail running films.”
For competitive trail runners out to make their mark, there will be a cash purse on offer of $1000 – one of the largest in Australian trail running, paid to the Brooks King and Queen of the Mountain title-winners. To be eligible, runners must participate in the Walhalla to Mount Baw Baw Marathon on the first day, and then choose from a 12km night or 12km day run the next day and then vie to be the fastest free mountain runner in the 1.5km technical downhill and uphill challenges on the final day.
“Of course, while we expect to see some of Australia’s best trail runners shoot for the money and glory, the event is first and foremost about enjoyment of running in mountains, so people can enter as many or as few events as they like: there is also a half marathon that is 99% singletrack, and a 3km kids and family fun run. Or people can just come up to watch some of the action – the free mountain running is spectator friendly being so short, sharp and spectacular – and maybe join in some of the break out sessions,” says Seamer.
The Brooks Trail Run Festival will again feature a line-up of Australia’s best competitive and adventure runners presenting and offering advice on mountain, with notables yet to be announced.
Says Brooks runner and event ambassador, adventure runner Samantha Gash (pictured running in the inaugural event, below right).
“The Inaugural Brooks Trail Run Fest ranks up there on one of my most enjoyable trail running weekends I have had. The energy of the whole weekend was extremely positive and uplifting, as not only did we have plenty of time to race hard but the three day format allowed everyone to get to know each other on a social level – which is part of the beauty of the trail running community in particular, it’s very welcoming and I think the Festival epitomises that. It’s definitely one to prioritise for the 2014 running calendar.”
Affordable self-catering accommodation is available on the mountain, with runners able to enjoy the benefit of having comfortable lodgings to rest and recuperate all within a few hundred metres of the finishing line. Also on mountain is a bar, café and restaurant, along with an Adventure Hub store, all open throughout the weekend.
Families will be catered for with a jumping castle and other kids’ activities to keep them amused while Mum or Dad runs, and there’s plenty else to keep everyone happy including mountain bike hire (XC and downhill, selected times) and of course walks, including to the summit of Mount Baw Baw for spectacular views across the Gippsland valley.
Brooks Trail Run Festival
Saturday 8 – Monday 10 March (public holiday long weekend)
Confirmed line-up (more to be announced)
- Marathon – Walhalla to Baw Baw village, 43km
- Half Marathon – Mt Erica Car Park – Baw Baw village, 21.5km
- + seminars and activities
- 12km day run
- 12km night run
- 3km kids and family fun run
- + seminars and activities
- 1.5km free mountain technical run descent
- 1.5km free mountain technical run ascent
- + presentations