Having recently taken an extended training break on account of recent
busyness laziness, I was really looking forward to getting back into running and taking on a race for fun. No hard push, no goal placement. Just take it easy and enjoy it.
The Prime Four Beast Race at Loch Ness was the perfect event to come back to. Set in the most stunning OCR location of anywhere I’ve seen; around and in the waters of Loch Ness.
The whole event focuses on enjoyment – from the daft warm-ups dances and the dunk in bog mud within 100 meters of the start line through to the water slides and 12 foot walls, the course was full of laughter and packed with obstacles designed to maximise team work.
The course took in grassy inclines, chilly waters and – my favourite – wooded trails. The winding trails through the woodlands offered the best of the running, combining open paths, rooty technical sections, uphills which bordered on hand-and-knee climbs and very fast downhills.
The Beast Pack
This is the first OCR, and first mixed-participation event where I’ve ever seen females outnumber males at the start line – 836 females accounted for 58% of the finishing participants on the day, with 605 males making up the 42%.
Seven waves of participants set off at 30 minute intervals, with the male winner, 👏 Aryaan Khalid 👏, emerging from Wave 3 in 50 minutes 30 seconds and the female winner, 👏 Coralie Arthur 👏, putting in an impressive performance from Wave 7 to battle through the field and take the top spot based on chip time in just over one hour at 1 hour 2 minutes 59 seconds.
The average finish time was a shade over two hours, at 2 hours 2 minutes and 7 seconds.
Teams were out in force during the race, 1265 (46%) people participated as part of a registered team. There were surely would have been unregistered teams out there on the day too.
The quickest team of three or more over the line were 👏 Beastie Boys 2017 👏, with a top-three team time of 1 hour 3 minutes 10 seconds.
The course was designed to maximise team work and emphasised group enjoyment. Twelve foot walls required punt-ups and Ropey McRopeFace, this year’s challenging new obstacle demanded a helping hand for most!
Finish line breakdown
Finish time buckets (5 minute intervals)
Breaking down the results by time and gender category, the reign of females in the pack begins to become much clearer.
As is commonly seen through analyses on this site, males tended to own the top places and quickest times. However, from around 1h45m, the female dominance emerges. During the high-traffic time of 2h05m-2h10m, there were 2 females crossing the line for every male 🤘
Having taken a gentler-than-usual trot around the course with my wife (who beat me by 1 second!), I finished the race in 1 hour 31 minutes, quicker than the course average of 1 hour 50 minutes. Chuffed with that as a first race back in a few months!
The Prime Four Beast Race in Loch Ness is without a doubt the most fun I’ve had whilst up to my chest in mud. Probably helped by taking it easy and slowing down to enjoy it, but most likely because of the spectacular setting and a running crowd who were there for a good time.
Getting my training back on track is priority one, and I’ll be heading back up north to the Prime Four Beast Race in Banchory on September 23 to push myself a bit harder than at Loch Ness 😝
|Elevation gain||749 feet, mostly gentle, with some sharp inclines!|
|Strava||My Loch Ness Beast Race activity on Strava|
|Results||Prime Four Beast Race at Loch Ness results|