Cayman’s toughest race, the 50k ultra-marathon and relay race Off the Beaten Track, is approaching and promises to be another gruelling test for those brave enough to tackle it.
The distance of roughly 31 miles is longer than the 26.1 mile of a standard marathon and as it is not on a flat, straight runner-friendly course, its claim to be the most demanding sporting event in Cayman is justified.
The race will be held on Sunday Feb. 23 and organizers are encouraging anyone interested to participate either individually or in a team of six.
Originally devised by race founder and KRyS Global’s executive chairman Kenneth Krys, Off the Beaten Track is a unique test of endurance that sees contestants run through some of Cayman’s most impenetrable terrain, including bush trails, dike roads and beaches.
The idea came about after Krys had participated in the renowned Marathon des Sables in Africa’s Sahara desert, acknowledged as the world’s toughest race, that takes participants through some of the planet’s most inhospitable terrain.
With the running scene so popular and competitive in Cayman, Krys wanted to offer this unique and challenging experience to the local running community. It was won last year by Andrew Keast.
“It’s as much about mental endurance as physical ability,” Krys said. “Off the Beaten Track is a great way to test yourself and at the same time raise money for Facing Africa as well as our chosen local charity, which I’m pleased to say this year is Meals on Wheels.”
Krys is hoping to beat last year’s record turnout on this fifth anniversary of the event.
“Last year, we had an impressive 36 relay teams and 15 individuals (a total of 231 participants in all) and this year we hope very much to further increase those numbers, so please register now and join in this wonderful adventure.”
In a bid to ensure that this year’s course will continue to challenge seasoned participants, Derek Larner from Race Caribbean is designing the course, the layout of which will not be released until a week before the race.
“Keeping the layout a surprise will undoubtedly add to the excitement for participants,” Larner said. “It will be challenging for competitors but incredibly rewarding at the same time.”
KRyS Global has been the main organizer of Off the Beaten Track since its inception, with support from leading marketing and communications firm, Tower.
The organizers are grateful to major sponsor Brown Rudnick, which has sponsored the event for the past two years and acknowledged supporting sponsors Ritch & Conolly and CaymanActive.com.
Entry to the race costs $300 for a team of six and $100 for individuals and all proceeds will go towards helping the needy in Africa and Cayman.
Online registration is now open at www.offthebeatentrack.ky. Corporate sponsorship is still available and volunteers are welcome. Interested parties should contact Catherine Healy on 947-4700 or [email protected]
For more information about this event, visit www.offthebeatentrack.ky.