Monday, August 19, 2013

Race The Train 2013 - Tywyn - Wales

Yesterday, August 17th 2013 'Race The Train' in Tywyn celebrated its thirtieth year.  I thought the event deserved a post on Travel Tales as runners had travelled from far and wide to take part in this fun series of races against a steam train from theTalyllyn Railway.

Organised by Tywyn Rotary Club the race raises money for charity and this year it was for Action for Children a national charity that supports vulnerable and neglected children in communities across the UK. The original idea that local dentist Godfrey Worsey had for the race has gone from strength to strength, since that first event thirty years ago with just about 48 runners. This year the main race of 14 miles (23km) had a field of at least 1,000 runners, with a total number of entries overall for the day touching 1600 it was a record year for entries, a number which I think is pretty impressive.

The full race of 14 miles (23 km) is from Tywyn to Abergynolwyn and back. The course is mostly over public footpaths and local privately owned farmland, with the permission of the landowners, though the first and last sections are on public roads. 
Additionally, there are shorter races in the morning, as follows:
  • Quarry Challenge - 6.2 miles (10.0 km) from Quarry Siding Halt to Tywyn.
  • Dolgoch Challenge - 5.5 miles (8.9 km) from Dolgoch to Tywyn.
  • Tynllwynhen Challenge - 3.5 miles (5.6 km) from Tynllwynhen Halt to Tywyn

A video of the start of the race can be viewed on the Love Tywyn - Facebook Page

As a newcomer to Tywyn it was great fun to be able to help at Race The Train yesterday. Unfortunately the weather did get progressively worse during the day and by the end of the afternoon everyone was absolutely drenched.

I would like to extend my Congratulations to everyone that took part. I was helping on the finish line and it was a real pleasure to meet all the amazing people. In the morning I was one of a team giving out the goody bags that every runner receives at the end of the race containing their souvenir t-shirts and medals for taking part. In the afternoon for the main event I was even closer to the finish giving out water and directing the runners to the collection point for their goody bags. I have great admiration for each and every one of those runners that crossed the finish line yesterday. Well Done.

As I was helping at the event I did not have much opportunity for photography! During my lunch break I did take a few general ones, including managing to catch the start of the main race. Also whipped my camera out to capture the first man home, I think I am correct in saying it was Andy Jones, full results and times if interested can be viewed on the Website - Race Results 2013 page.

I have shared a selection of the photos I managed to capture with the little Panasonic I had in my pocket, just to give you an idea of the atmosphere as generally rather disappointing. Plenty of great shots all over the web though if you follow some of the links listed below.

The start of the main race.

Activities for non- runners.

First man home  - Andy Jones - Crosses The Finish Line

Commemorative T-Shirts I was privileged to be given one to wear while helping at the event.

The Medal Received by the Runners

This link will take you to a   Video of Start of Race The Train 2013

                                          Map of Talyllyn railway courtesy of Wikipedia

With thanks to the following links for information contained in this post.

Tywyn Rotary Club - Facebook Page     Love Tywyn - Facebook Page    Wikipedia - Race the Train

Talyllyn Railway   Race The Train - Official Website

Entry for 'Race The Train ' 2014 is already open, details can be found here

All photos are my own taken in August 2013. 
 Copyright All rights reserved by LindyLouMac Photo Collection 
The full set of photos may also be viewed individually in my album entitled  


  1. Brilliant post Linda, and how fab that you took part in the event too ,, well done to you and all that took part (running) xox

  2. what fun! And wow what an achievement to keep this race going for so many years and for it to increase in popularity. I should tell my son who does marathons. So who won - the man (Andy Jones) or the train?

    1. Andy Jones definitely beat the train as I believe did some of the other runners.

  3. That is a great event to be involved in. I know that for the runners it wasn't all flat as I have been on the line. Phil and I used to be involved with Raynet and helped out at the London Marathon for the wheelchair runners also various half marathons and 10k runs. My daughter is taking part in the Basingstoke half marathon soon and we will be there with Harry to support her and meet her at the finishing line.
    I couldn't even run for a bus now so I admire any runner!!
    Shame about the weather though, in August you hope it is possibly going to be too hot, but obviously not yesterday!!!

    Well done for helping and getting involved. Have a good week, Jackie in Surrey.

  4. Bravo! A fantastic cause and event. Great that you were able to help out and share it with us.

  5. I am not a runner but I am SO impressed by those that are. :-) It's so nice that you volunteered to make this race happen. :-)

  6. Sounds like a really fun event and day out! Did anybody beat the train?!

    Duncan In Kuantan

  7. that is a lot of runners and a long way to run. we used to race the train, but that was in daddy's 53 Pontiac. there was a place about 20 miles long we could run beside the train...

  8. Hi there Linda. Sorry I'm a little late! Pity about the weather, but I expect the runners were quite relieved that it wasn't too hot! Amazing that this event has been going for 30 years, and such a good cause for this year's event. Over 1,000 runners - it must have been quite a sight, and I'm so glad that you were involved in the way that you were.

  9. Hi Lindy! Good to see the beat the train race from the perspective of a helper giving out water etc. and your post with the photos gives a good idea of the great atmosphere there on the day.

  10. Great idea and looked like so much fun even if you were not taking part.

  11. HI! just found your blog thru an Italy search which brought me here. Can't wait to read thru your blog....sounds very interesting. And prayers to you for your loss.
    I'm a travel crazy person photographing my craziness as I go!!

    1. Welcome thanks for your kind words and I hope you will find my blogging here of interest. :)

  12. Looks like a very fun event and so great that you were volunteering!


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