Downland Devil 9

A last minute sign up, to put off going Christmas shopping saw my husband and I travelling an hour or so out of Hastings to run the Downland Devil 9 run put on by the Worthing Striders running club.

This run is 9 miles cross country on farmland at Church Farm, that is not usually open to the public. The terrain is hilly, very hilly, the tough uphill sections made up for by some fantastic downhill running.

People gathering at the start
People gathering at the start

The race started you straight up the side of a hill to kick off the 9 miles of trails over the farmland, you then proceeded to run up and down several more hills, some with a fairly gentle gradient, and others that reduced most people (including me) to a walk, these uphill sections were well rewarded with some nice flat sections and some downhill sections that really allowed you to get up some speed.

Some views from up heigh
Some views from up high

For the first 4 miles or so I seemed to be struggling a bit with cramp, but after that subsided I started to really enjoy myself, hubby however found his knee giving up, so between us we probably made up one fully functioning runner. We stuck together though, well, until the very final decent downhill to the finish where I took off and zoomed down to the finish to collect my race mementos, which turned out to be a Worthing Striders drawstring bag containing a Downlands Devil 9 mug.

With Phil at the finish
With Phil at the finish

This was a great run that was challenging but fun to complete and I would certainly give it a go again in future years.