Can You Conquer The Wall?
Sure, you’ve heard of a marathon. Who hasn’t? But what about an ultramarathon? An ultramarathon is a race longer than the typical 26.2 mile marathon. If you’d like to try your hand at an ultramarathon, your chance is coming up with the 4th Annual Conquer the Wall Endurance Challenge.
Conquer the Wall, which is hosted by Tug Valley Road Runners Club, got started after TVRRC President Alexis Batausa ran a 50K in Georgia. He knew that this would work great in Williamson, and that’s how Conquer the Wall was born.
Runners participating in Conquer the Wall can run alone or in teams. This race will take runners around a 2.05 mile looped course, and runners can choose between a 35 hour or a 47 hour run. "The Wall" refers to the floodwall located in West Williamson which makes up part of the running loop. “You will have people chasing goals such as 50 miles to even 100 miles,” Alexis says.
In the past, they’ve seen participants from across the country, as well as visitors from as far away as Brazil. Alexis tells us, “You will see determination, sleep deprivation, smiles, and tears during race weekend."
Of course, due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, there will be some changes. In the past, participants have slept inside of facilities offered by TVRRC, cots were provided, and food was kept prepared. This year, the club is not offering indoor sleeping arrangements, kitchen prep, showers, or restrooms. TVRRC is asking participants to bring their own supplies if possible.
Alexis notes, “To be safe, we follow the guidelines, but we will offer primitive camping. Participants can rest in vehicles, we will have some food on hand, and we ask participants to bring supplies for themselves during the run weekend.”
Volunteers will wear gloves and masks when helping, and will practice social distancing. “We ask each participant to have a mask or running gaiters for when they start the race and when they enter the finish line area,” Alexis says. The starting and finish lines will be in the same location.
The Conquer the Wall Endurance challenge will take place from 7pm on March 12 through 7pm on March 14 at the Southern West Virginia Community and Technical College Williamson Campus. To learn more about previous Conquer the Wall challenges, read here! If you’d like to connect with other runners, or learn more, check out the Facebook group! For additional information and registration info go to: https://ultrasignup.com/register.aspx?did=54865.
Good luck to all of the participants!