The Nathan Ridge Run: A Sneak Peek, Part 2

The 1st Nathan Ridge Run at Tagaytay Higlands this November 20 will probably rival the Corregidor International Half-Marathon (CHIM) in Corregidor Island (December 10) in the scenery and hills department and for me, these 2 are probably the most scenic and difficult race courses that a runner would want to experience!

Just less than 2 hours drive from Makati, Tagaytay Highlands seems like hundred kilometers away from the hustle and bustle of the city. Tucked into the vast ridges of Tagaytay is a mountain lovers paradise, a perfect get away for those wanting some peace and quite and for runners who may want to experience a different scene, far from the smog, noise and other pollutants of running in the city.

While the CIHM race is warm and humid owing to its late race start and being an island surrounded by water, Tagaytay seems to be cool all year round and the Nathan Ridge Run’s staging this November would surely be a blessing for runners who will encounter cool, crisp weather.

Just be forewarned. The thing about this race is that there will be no race cups provided at the water stations and instead, runners will use their hand-held hydration bottles which comes free with the registration and fill this up at the refilling stations. You can also bring your own hydration bottles if you want. The race is in line with its GREEN theme to help clean the environment.

Here’s the official Press Release from Nathan Sports:

Nathan  Ridge Run coming this November

Eco-friendly race boasts scenic, challenging route

A breathtaking view of nature overlooking the lush greeneries of Tagaytay, an uphill road course through rolling hills, and never-before-opened running areas set the Nathan Ridge Run apart from your common fun run.

Slated for November 20th at the Tagaytay Highlands, the race is organized by renowned multi-sport accessory brand Nathan Performance Gear (Nathan), who will challenge Filipino runners in a unique test of athleticism, endurance and environmental advocacy.

Nathan will provide participants access to previously off-limits tracks, resulting in a fresh, challenging and steep uphill road course meant to push the limits of each runner. While in the venue, runners can also take advantage of several exclusive perks, including access to some of Highlands’ amenities and discounts.

The Nathan Ridge Run features three race divisions for the beginner to the elite with its 5K, 10K and 21K road distances. Runners are set to get their hearts racing for health and for nature. Beginners can hone their craft and endurance, while veteran athletes can improve their level of game.

In the spirit of greener practices, the use of environmentally harmful plastic cups will be ditched in favor of free Nathan handheld sports bottles included in the race kit or the racers’ own hydration gear. Runners can use innovative bottles such as the Nathan Quickdraw Plus, which provides them easy access to hydration while on-the-go.

Runners can park, refill, hydrate and go for gold. Simple and efficient, the Quickdraw Plus is best for keeping dehydration at bay; no need to wait until the next check point to replenish, and no need to use harmful disposables.

Instead of the typical water stations you see in most city races, where plastic cups are lined up for the taking and disposed of as soon as runners are sufficiently hydrated, Nathan will be setting up conveniently placed refilling stations in different points of the road.

I’ve blog parts of the Nathan Ridge race route in Part 1 (PART-1) and here are the rest of the pictures taken during our rendezvous at Tagaytay Highlands last week-end:

Arriving at the Resort's Sports Center, (L-R) Cj, Jojo, Ed, Blas, Amanda, Me, Carina and Irish

At the briefing room presided by Mariel, Brand Associate of Nathan Gears

The fog grips above the ridges and is just an awesome scene!

A view from above the Country Clubhouse

The hills were no match for the scenic view

A Cabin Log at the Midlands

With Amanda and Carina

An old favorite versus the new ones

This is not the singlet that will be provided with your race kits but a different one which will be unveiled soon

A Sneak Peek at the Nathan Ridge Run 2011 Race Route: Part 1

When Primer Group, race organizers of the 1st Nathan Ridge Run decided to stage this race at the Tagaytay Highlands and Midland Resort, i thought that there wouldn’t be any more better place to run this race outside of Metro Manila but looks and scenery could be just as deceiving.

And there’s nothing like getting up on a race course that’s to be run on some of the most challenging hills, most of it never been ventured. For sure it’s going to be a devil’s hill race and a reality for one’s lack of mastery on it.

A devil's race course in the sky

Experiencing the torturous hills here first hand is having a keen knowledge that this course won’t be a walk in the park, stroll-along-the lake kind of race (except perhaps, if you really would walk the whole distance).

The roads, wide and generous has its mixed feel: pine trees that line up along its edges, fog that hazes the horizon, cliffs and ridges that resemble scenes on National Geographic, log cabins that seem to have been uprooted from North America, an abundance of wild forest with wild birds gliding above it and the spectacular view of Taal Volcanoe in Lake Taal. You perceive its sheer beauty when running about it, yet experience its sharp harshness when you thread up those killer hills.

I was with fifteen other bloggers and runners who were invited by Ms. Mariel Flores, Brand Associate for Nathan Performance Gear for a familiarization tour of the 5k, 10k and 21k race courses, for the November 20, 2011 Nathan Ridge Run.

For those who haven’t been to Tagaytay Highlands and are running this course for the first time, here’s a snap preview of the race course. I’ll be coming up with a second part where i’ll focus on some of the scenes along the course. Here goes:

Near the start, Amanda gleefully strolls about

Trudging the short uphill while B (Titanium Runner) patiently waits for us

A sports facilitator of the resort leads the runners

It was a bit wet and damp during the run but was cool and breezy

Passing through one of the resort villages

Fog engulfed us along the ridge

Jojo and the rest takes a breather

The infamous uphill to one of the peaks

That structure up that hill is called the "peak"

A view at our backs

That's Jojo trying to be minimalist runner and photographer at the same time

Those are views that we'll see on race day

That's Amanda, baby of the group!

Pedz, the Running Atom

A cement trail somewhere...

An entrance to another village

One of the few flat surfaces on the course

Lots of zigzag roads here

One of the last hill before reaching the peak

Making the move..there are 2 more hills after this

Getting my bearings for the final push. Taal volcano in the background

100 meters from here will be the peak

The Peak

View below

Taking a respite, and we've only covered 3.2kms

Log cabins

The Nathan Running Dream Team! (Photo by Nathan Grp)

Back to the club house

A hearty barbecue spare ribs lunch after the run

Tagaytay Ridge Run 2011
November 20, 20111
Tagaytay Highlands and Midlands Resort

Registration Fees:

5K – P850 (singlet, Nathan Sprint handheld, post-race meal)
10K – P1,050 (singlet, Nathan Quickdraw Plus handheld, post-race meal)
21K – P1,050 (singlet, Nathan Quickdraw Plus handheld, post-race meal)

Nathan Quickdraw Plus (22 oz) worth P990.00

Registration centers at ROX, Toby’s Sports, Secondwind Stores, A Runners Circle, The Starting Line.

There will be more pictures and the race details in Part 2! Watch for it!