The Bull Run team are currently working through the logistics of planning the course for the event, which obviously requires the support and assistance of a range of local councils, authorities and services. Course details are all subject to council, Parks Victoria and VicRoads approval, and will be completely confirmed by April 2013.
Our course basically follows the Yarra River, from the gorgeous wine region of the Yarra Valley, all the way into Melbourne, where the river runs into the CBD.
START LINE – 7am START
With an initial lap of the Yarra Valley race track in Yarra Glen, we float through the main street as dawn grasps this sleepy hollow. Then it’s a left turn and a short reprieve, before the BIG HILL climb begins. This will require the quiet determination you’ve been steeling yourself for, so dig in, control your fear and bring the BULL!
It’s a draining 2km to the top, but the worst of your mountaineering is over and you can catch your breath while you take in the incredible beauty of the Yarra Valley at daybreak, plus clear views of your destination – the Melbourne city skyline.
The undulating Skyline Road will take you to the artist’s nook of Warrandyte, crossing the bridge into the township, then finding our first Bull Pen Transition. The Big Red Bulls of the relay will hand over to the Blue Bulls, who take on the middle stage of the race – a half marathon distance.
BULL PEN TRANSITION 1 – 32.8KM – 11am CUT OFF
Our Full Bull runners will be powering through this transition, on their way to ultimate glory!! The cut-off for this transition is 4 hours, so the Full Bulls will need to be past this Bull Pen by 11am.
Our Bulls will all be stampeding along the Yarra River Trail, toward Melbourne at this point. The course has flattened out significantly and faster runners will be in paradise as they wind their way to glory. The city skyline appears between the trees here and there, tempting them forward.
We weave through Doncaster and onto the bike path through Westerfolds Park. It’s likely to be horns down in this section, not only to battle fatigue, but the likelihood of a rogue kangaroo leaping across the course in this fauna rich environment.
Once into the open parkland of Rosanna and Ivanhoe, most runners will know their way home, as it’s a popular stomping area. Our last Bull Pen Transition will appear now, like a bastion of encouragement in this dramatic urban wilderness. The Battling Blue Bulls of the relay will hand over to the Ballistic Black Bulls for the final charge to Victory.
Our Full Bulls will feel no pain here, but smirk in bemusement as they muster their remaining strength for this last half marathon. The cut-off for this transition is 2pm, with a full 3 hours to get through the final 21kms.
BULL PEN TRANSITION 2 – 53.9KM – 2pm CUT OFF
First though, we’ve included Yarra Boulevard (aka Kew Boulevard), the final set of hills for the race – we know it’s renowned for it’s quad busting climbs, but yes, you better buck up! Melbourne’s glory, bathed in sunshine, will beckon you on. Your courage will be the stuff of legends as you gallop toward your goal!
Once onto the river after the final hill, it’s a dash for home along the bends of the Yarra Boulevard. A veritable stampede of breathless bovine beauty, the sheen of sweat will sparkle from your bodies in the midday sun. The Gods will urge you forward, the crowds will cry your name, the Matadors will torment you, you wild brave beasts, in your frenzied dash to the city.
But with one more bend, under one more bridge, you see the finish line emerge, beneath the towering buildings of the CBD. Your courage has not been wasted, whether you’ve gone the Full Bull, or the Rampaging Relay. With one final burst of aggression, your hooves will take you down Victory Lane. The volume of cheering will be deafening, but the pride you will feel will quiet the demons of fear for years to come. You have succeeded, denying those foolish naysayers and justifying the support of those who believed. You brave souls that have risen to the challenge, we will salute your passion for life, your resilience in the face of pain and possible failure, for your spirit would not… COULD NOT be defeated!
FINISH LINE – 75KM – 5pm CUT OFF
Your name will be etched into the archives of history as the first Mighty Bulls of this, the inaugural staging of THE BULL RUN!!