Excitement Builds for the IMRA Nagles Half & Full Marathon

March 08, 2024

As the IMRA Nagles Half and Full Marathon approaches this Saturday morning, Run Republic had the opportunity to catch up with Mags Hassett of IMRA Munster, gaining insights into the unique aspects of the race that make it stand out in the packed IMRA calendar. 

One of the distinguishing features of the Nagles is its diverse terrain. Mags highlighted key elements such as fire roads and significant water crossings. It's not just a run; it's an adventure that promises to test participants' skills and stamina. The course covers a variety of landscapes, including dense woods, open mountains, and challenging rocky sections, making it a truly engaging experience for mountain running enthusiasts.

The course demands focus and precision as participants navigate through rocks and stones, ensuring they stay on track. The descent at the end of the marathon adds an extra layer of excitement, featuring a mix of rocks, stones, and flowing streams, creating a thrilling finale to the race.

One standout feature of the Nagles marathon is the abundance of water on the course. Participants are advised to prepare for wet conditions, adding another element to the race. This unique challenge not only tests physical endurance but also requires mental resilience as participants brave the elements.

Photograph from part of the Nagles route.
Photograph from part of the Nagles route. Credit: Joan Ryan

The event kicks off with the marathon starting at 9am, followed by the half marathon at 11am. The GAA grounds in Killavullen serve as the meeting point tomorrow morning, where participants register and prepare for the challenging journey ahead. From there, runners make their way to the start line, located about one kilometre uphill from the grounds, setting the stage for an exciting race.

With 42 participants signed up for the marathon and 117 for the half marathon, the event has garnered significant interest from the community. The impressive numbers speak to the allure of the Nagles route and the challenge it presents to both seasoned and novice trail runners.

Behind the scenes, Race Directors, Joan Ryan for the marathon and Lianne van Dijk for the half marathon, are diligently working to ensure a smooth and enjoyable race day. Today, they are out running the course, meticulously checking markers and ensuring that the route is well-prepared for the participants. The dedication of the Race Directors and volunteers is evident in the meticulous planning, with efforts even extending to diverting water off trails to manage water levels in the days before the race kicks off.

As the IMRA Nagles Half and Full Marathons approach, anticipation is building for a thrilling and memorable event. With a challenging course, dedicated organisers and volunteers, and a vibrant community of runners, this year's edition promises to be as exciting as ever.

Featured Image: Joan Ryan