Bloem runners ready to #TakeBackOurTrails

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PHOTO: LLEWELLYN LLOYD / REBLEX PHOTOGRAPHY

Trail runners in Bloemfontein will brave the hugely popular Happy Valley on Friday evening in a 5km and a 10km trail run, and it the process make a statement in reclaiming the venue.

Happy Valley has been in the news quite often in recent times, and for all the wrong reasons.

Pure Adventures will be hosting their next leg of the Castle Lite Trail Series, presented by Bloemfontein Courant, and the race will be known Glow Run in the #TakeBackOurTrails campaign.

Sadly, criminal elements have targeted Happy Valley, and adventures lovers and thrill seekers have been attacked in recent time.

Happy Valley is by far one of the most technical terrains in the City of Roses, not just for trail running, but for mountain biking as well, and this is what makes it so popular. Night runs at the venue are unheard of, however, this will all change on Friday evening.

“This is a conservancy close to our hearts, its right in the middle of Bloemfontein, but there has been some controversy over the safety,” says the race organiser, Adrian Saffy.

“There has been a number of people who have been mugged while training at this the beautiful green zone of ours.

“We actually changed our venue to come and run at Happy Valley, and the initiative is to take back our trails.”

“It is a travesty if criminal elements take away our green zones and playgrounds, and everyone just stands back and lets them win.

“We are not going to let them win, we are going to take back our trails and enjoy a beautiful night out. Then we are going to send a message to the relevant authorities that this is a zone that people and kids want to use.

“There is an awesome mountain bike track there, and there are awesome trails there, and it will be sad to see this lost became of one or two bad elements.”

The race will see ten security guards along the route in order to beef up the safety and make the event enjoyable for everyone.

The race registrations open at 17:00, and the race itself will get underway at 18:30.

Headlamps and torches will be required, and competitors are encouraged to bring extra lighting sources such as glow sticks to make the event even more fun.

Entry Fees: 5km – R60 • 10km – R80 • Conservancy fee Included in the race entry fee. – MORGAN PIEK