We're Putting On The World's First Ever Disability Inclusive Trail Race | News - Outdoors Magic

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We’re Putting On The World’s First Ever Disability Inclusive Trail Race | News

The Outdoors Magic Trail Race will be open to everyone this year. Hear from Chris Nicholson, one of our disabled race entrants...

Chris Nicholson has determination, that’s for sure. Confident in his own ability on the trails of the Lake District, he wanted to take things up a notch and try out an official trail race ahead of taking part in the London Marathon later this year. The problem was, being a wheelchair user, no race organisers would accept him. “It’s health and safety” was a response he got very used to.

That was before he got in touch with the guys at the OMM who pointed him in the direction of their OMM Festival, and more specifically the series of trail races that Outdoors Magic will be hosting there at Cannock Chase during the early May bank holiday (4-5 May).

He’s now enrolled and is ready to line up on the start line of the Outdoors Magic 10K, which, despite starting out as, well, just a standard trail race, is now set to become the first ever able-bodied and disabled inclusive trail race in the UK. It’ll even pick up a Guinness World Record for it.

“I’ll get it done, whatever it takes.”

It was a tip tackle on the rugby pitch four years ago that brought about Chris’s life changing injury. “I remember it just being a normal game, then lying on the ground,” he tells me over the phone. “I was off the pitch in 5 minutes, then I was put into a coma. There was the fracture, plus I picked up a brain injury as well.”

When he began to come to terms with the fact he’d never be able to walk again he admits to going into a dark place, but he’s since turned things around. “I still have some bad days,” he says, “but I’ve learnt to take a positive approach to things, and just get on with it.”

He’s certainly been doing that. Back in 2017 he made it to the top of Snowdon in just 2 hours 41 min, a record-breaking time for a wheelchair ascent. “After about 75% I wanted to give up,” he recollects, but he was pushed on by the “emotion and drive to get busy living again.”

Participants at last year’s OMM Festival


Days before the Outdoors Magic Trail Race, Chris is aiming to break the amateur wheelchair record in the London Marathon while raising money for the Matt Hampson Foundation. He’s also got one eye on the UK Three Peaks Challenge later this year.

So what are his expectations for the Trail Race? “I’m aiming for 50 minutes but it will all depend on the conditions,” he says. “Still I’ll get it done, whatever it takes.”

Race places for the inclusive Outdoors Magic 10K Trail Race, as well as the full marathon and half marathon are still available and can be purchased via the OMM’s website.

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