Northern Ireland Running

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Rathlin Run 2015

Details of the Rathlin Run 2015 will be released very soon, but for now, save the date.  After our extremely successful partnership with BAC, we have confirmed the date for the 2015 event as:


       SATURDAY 29TH AUGUST 2015

Rathlin Run 2014


As of Wednesday 13th August 2014, no further entries can be taken for the Rathlin Run 2014.  All ferries running from Ballycastle to Rathlin Island on Saturday 23rd August 2014 are FULL!

The only exception to this ruling is if you have already booked your ferry place, but still need to enter the race through Belfast Activity Centre (028 90 600132); if this is the case, you MUST enter before 5pm on Friday 15th August 2014! 

Note:  If you are willing to travel to Rathlin Island on Friday 22nd August 2014, returning on Sunday 24th August 2014, we may be able to accommodate your entry, but please book your ferry first and then contact Belfast Activity Centre before 5pm on Friday 15th August 2014.

NiRunning (Northern Ireland Running) are very proud to announce that from this year (2014), we will be working in association with highly respected charity, Belfast Activity Centre (aka BAC) on the Rathlin Run.

The Rathlin Run is Northern Ireland's most unique, and arguably, most challenging road race. This will be the 13th annual running of the event, which was originally introduced by Raleigh International, before Belfast Activity Centre took the reigns several years ago.  In recent years, the event has offered participants the choice between a 10k (6.2m) and a Half Marathon (13.1m), but this year, the decision has been made to revert back to the VERY popular '10 mile challenge', the original distance that caught the imagination of the local running community and cemented the event as an annual favourite. The associated 5k run will also return, and offer an alternative for those wanting to test themselves over (or enjoy) a flatter, shorter course.

The event will take place on SATURDAY 23RD AUGUST 2014, with the 10 mile Challenge kicking off at 1pm and the 5k Run following at 1.15pm.

Belfast Activity Centre's Andrea Kilpatrick spoke of her excitement for this years event, "I am delighted to be working in association with NiRunning this year on the Rathlin Run. It will no doubt add a new dimension to a race that has been very important to people for a number of years.  Through the combined skills and knowledge of BAC and NiRunning we anticipate that Rathlin Run 2014 will be the highlight of the year, so be sure to sign up soon." 

Ryan Maxwell (NiRunning) added, “The Rathlin Run has been an event that I have participated in and travelled to a number of times, it's a truly unique race and an excellent experience; having enjoyed and respected the event so much, it is now quite surreal, and really nice to be part of it.  This is something we as a team, alongside our friends at BAC, are looking forward to!  The fact that it falls on the same weekend as our website's '2nd Birthday' makes it all the more exciting.”

Entries will be limited to 300 (inclusive of both events), so we would encourage everyone to enter early make use of the early-bird options, which are priced at £15 for the 10 mile race and £10 for the 5k.

Entry Details:

To enter the Rathlin Run 2014 please contact Belfast Activity Centre on 028 90 600 132; you will be able to pay by debit/credit card (or call to the office with cheque or cash).  The entry fee's for 2014 are:  RATHLIN 10 mile Challenge - £25 per individual entry (£15 early bird entry available until 31st May 2014).  RATHLIN 5k Run - £15 per individual entry (£10 early bird entry available until 31st May 2014).

Special Charity Fundraising Package:

Enter a team of 10 runners to fund raise for your good cause and qualify for a special charity group entry rate of £100 (register and pay by 30th June 2014).

Transport - Important Information:

All runners and supporters must make their own ferry arrangements. To book your outbound and return ferry with the Rathlin Island Ferry visit their on line booking website at or contact the booking office on 028 2076 9299.  We would recommend that you reserve book your return ferry crossings first before confirming your race registration and payment.      

Let your friends know that the challenge is back and save the date!  Please follow us on facebook (NiRunning) and twitter (@NiRunning) if you would like to be kept up to date with the Rathlin Run 2014. You can also follow Belfast Activity Centre on facebook (Belfast Activity Centre) and twitter (@BACCharity).

Course Description:

Rathlin Run (10 mile) - Map available HERE:

The Rathlin Run 10 mile race covers an extremely scenic course.  It starts in the hub of the island, ‘Church Bay’ before heading inland, where competitors will complete a ‘loop’ which takes them in the direction of the East Light House.  Once at the island’s Community Centre (1.6m), the course directs athletes right and follows the main road towards the popular RSPB Seabird Centre and the West Lighthouse.

Participants will follow this undulating road, where they will be treated to stunning coastal and inland views.  En-route to the furthermost Western Point of the island, runners will pass Kinramer Wood, before entering Kebble Nature Reserve.  After completing a short off road road/trail section (normal road running shoes are suitable), competitors will turn at the RSPB Seabird Centre (5.7m), where they will follow the instructions of Marshalls and turn, heading back towards the Church Bay.

Unlike many ‘out and back’ courses, the Rathlin Run is unique in the fact that running in each direction seems appears like a completely new route, due to the stunning scenery, much of which is only visible when you are travelling either one way or the other.  On reaching the Community Centre, athletes will be instructed to turn right, down a steep hill (proceed with caution and turn left at the bottom) towards the Harbour.  Here, participants will enjoy a flat and fast finish along the Sea Front, before finishing just short of McCuigs Bar.

There will be Water Stations located at 2.5m, 5.7m and 8.1m.

Rathlin 5k Run - Map available HERE:

Athletes will start in Church Bay (same start as the 10m race), before moving inland and turning right behind McCuigs Bar, towards ‘Rue Point’.  The course takes competitors past Craigmacagan Lough and Ally Lough, before turning just prior to the descent towards Usher Lough and the ‘metal gate’ into RSPB land.  On the way back, runners will then turn left before reaching Soernoeg Hostel, this will take them onto the stunning coast line; from here, participants will follow the coastal path, which offers excellent views of historical ruins, through Mill Bay and back towards Church Bay, where they will finish directly in front of McCuigs Bar.

There will be a Water Stations located at 1k and 4k.