The race will take place on Saturday 11 September 2021, with a 7.30am start. Entries will be limited to 300 and will open at 1.00am on Saturday 19 June. If more than 300 entries have been received by 12 noon on Sunday 20 June, entries will close at that time and a ballot will take place, with all competitors being advised of the ballot result within a week of the closing time. If the 300 limit has not been reached by noon on Sunday 20 June, entries will remain open until 300 entries have been received or until 11 August, whichever is the earlier. Under the latter scenario all entrants will be allocated a place. The entry fee will be £38 for members of Scottish Athletics, England Athletics, Welsh Athletics or Athletics Northern Ireland, and £40 for all others.
Registration takes place on Saturday 11 September 2021 between 6.00am and 7.15am at the Scout Hall in Milngavie. The Scout Hall is located at 37 Main Street, Milngavie G62 6BX and is beside the race start and finish. At registration you will be given your race number, along with your timing device to be used at the checkpoints during the race.
All runners will be required to show photographic ID to collect their race number. You will be given your Buff and any merchandise you have purchased.
You should park and one of the public car parks in Milngavie, or in an unrestricted area. Please do not park in the Tesco car park as there is a 3 hour limit and penalty charges will apply for stays beyond this. You should also avoid parking at the station car park.
A short race briefing will take place near the start line at 7.20am.
Race numbers will be posted on the website a few days before the race.
The race will start at 7.30am on Saturday 11 September from behind the Scout Hall. It will follow a marked path on to the Milngavie town centre pedestrian precinct, and join the West Highland Way at the stairs beside the West Highland Way monument.
The route is approximately 38 miles. It follows a path from the Scout Hall in Milngavie, through the pedestrian precinct in Milngavie Town Centre, and joins the West Highland Way at the stairs beside the monument. From there it stays on the West Highland Way all the way to the checkpoint at Balmaha car park. At Balmaha car park the route leaves the West Highland Way and joins the pavement beside the Oak Tree Inn, then heads south towards Milton of Buchanan. At Milton of Buchanan it takes a turning to the left, heads up the hill, and rejoins the West Highland Way. It then returns to the Scout Hall in Milngavie on the West Highland Way, following the same route as was run on the way out. The finish is at the same point as the start, behind the Scout Hall.
Marshals will be in place at all of the main junctions. The section between Balmaha and Milton of Buchanan can be busy with traffic, and it is important that all runners stay on the pavement.
Each runner is required to check in at a number of checkpoints throughout the race, as follows:
Gartness Road – 10 miles
Balmaha car park – 19 miles
Gartness Road – 28 miles
Any runner not reaching the checkpoint at Balmaha car park within 5 hours, or the return checkpoint at Gartness Road within 7 hours 30 minutes, will be withdrawn from the race. This will be based on the electronic timing and all cut-off times will be strictly enforced. It is a condition of entry that any runner failing to reach a checkpoint within the designated timescales surrenders his / her timing card and does not continue in the race. The only exception to this is where a runner has stopped to help another runner in trouble and this has caused him / her to miss a cut-off; in that case the runner will be referred to the Race Safety Officer or Race Director, whose decision will be final.
Water will be provided at each checkpoint. Any other food and drinks needs to be carried by the runner, or be put in the runner’s drop-bag for the half way point (see more details below).
Each runner will be issued with a SPORTident Timing Card (SI-Card) at registration. At each of the checkpoints shown above you need to lay the SI-Card flat over the hole in the SPORTident Timing station and the station will beep or flash. This indicates that a timestamp has been recorded on your card.
This procedure is an essential requirement of the race. Follow the same procedure at the Finish and hand your SI-Card to the SPORTident Timing Team. You will be given a small printout showing your split times through each checkpoint on the route.
Should you need to retire during the event, wherever possible please hand in your SI-Card at a checkpoint on your route or at the finish.
Until each SI-Card has reached the Finish or been handed in at a checkpoint, the event organisers will assume that you are still on the course. Failure to hand in your SI-Card at the event will cause an unnecessary search by rescue teams and you may be barred from taking part in future events. There is a charge of £30 for each SI-Card that is not handed in.
Please ensure you have read, and taken heed of, the medical advice on the race website. This can be found at the following link: http://westhighlandwayrace.org/race-information/medical-advice/
Specifically, please do not take Ibuprofen or other NSAIDs, such as naproxen or diclofenac. These can cause serious medical problems during endurance events and if we become aware of any runner taking Ibuprofen or other NSAIDs that runner may be disqualified. It is also very important that you note the dangers of over-hydration, and ensure you only drink to thirst. We would advise that you remove all rings before starting the race – we have recent experience of a runner’s fingers swelling badly during the race, leading to their ring having to be cut off.
You are required to complete the medical details that are requested on the entry form. The medical team may in some cases ask additional follow up questions of runners with a more complex or challenging background, with a view to mitigating any additional health risks as far as possible.
Every runner is required to carry a lightweight space blanket throughout the race. These only cost a couple of pounds from any outdoor shop, and could make a significant difference if you are unfortunate enough to have a fall, particularly if it is in a remote part of the trail.
We are also insisting that every runner carries a mobile phone, with the following emergency numbers programmed in to it:
Sean Stone, Race Safety Officer – 07768 642314
Ian Beattie, Race Director – 07939 535523
In the event of an emergency, Sean should be the first point of contact. If contact cannot be made with Sean, Ian is the second point of contact.
There are other items of kit that you must have available if directed by a race official, although whether you need to carry them on the day will depend on the conditions at any particular time. These include the following:
Full body waterproof clothing;
Remember, conditions can vary considerably throughout the course of the race and it is better to carry too much kit than find yourself short.
No competitor is allowed to use walking poles at any stage of the race.
Dogs are not allowed to run with any competitor at any stage of the race. This is a condition of our event insurance.
iPods/MP3 players are permitted on most sections of the course, but competitors must be able to hear what is going on at all times. Earphones must be removed at checkpoints, at road crossings, when approaching marshals, and at all times when running on public roads. If a marshal signals you to remove your earphones, you must do so immediately. No headphones are permitted on the pavement section between Balmaha and Milton of Buchanan, and any runner flouting this rule will be disqualified.
There will be a facility for runners to leave a drop-bag at the half way point. Please ensure the drop bag is clearly marked with your race number, and take it to the marked vehicle at the start at the Scout Hall.. It will not be possible to return the contents of your drop bag to you after the race.
Litter and general behaviour:
The West Highland Way is a route of outstanding beauty, and we try to ensure our race is well regarded by the West Highland Way rangers, by those living near the route, and by other users. To this end please make sure you do not drop any litter anywhere on the route, but that you carry it with you to the next checkpoint. Please also show consideration for walkers and other users.
A support crew or support runner is not allowed at any stage of the race.
All runners will receive an event buff at registration. Additional race merchandise will be available for purchase.
Prizes will be awarded to the first three male and first three female finishers. Prizes will be awarded at the finish as soon as the winners have been confirmed. All finishers will receive a race memento.
Potential changes due to Coronavirus situation:
We hope to be able to run the race in the traditional manner, with all entrants starting at the same time. However this depends entirely on the Coronavirus situation on race day, and we may need to make changes to reflect the particular circumstances. For example, it may be necessary to set runners off in ‘bubbles’, the fastest starting first with each group going off at timed intervals. Competitors may need to wear a face-mask when running in to a checkpoint, and registration may need to be outside rather than inside the Scout Hall. Social distancing of runners during the race may be required. However we will not know whether changes of this nature will be required until much closer to race day, so any necessary changes to the race rules will be e-mailed to entrants in the week before the race. In the unlikely event that the race is unable to take place, our plan would be to reschedule to a later date, likely to be in 2022, and roll all entries forward to that date.
Withdrawal from the race:
If you need to withdraw from the race, please notify this by e-mail to email@example.com . A refund of £25 will be made for withdrawals notified on or before 11 August (one month before race day), if the place can be filled. No refunds will be given for withdrawals notified after 11 August or if the place cannot be filled, but it is still important that you let us know. Please note that it is not possible to defer any entries to a future race.