Inward Bound Liveblog 2019

2018 endpoint

18.51

I’m signing off for the evening, folks. I’ll provide another update once the results have been finalised.

Just a few acknowledgements before I go:

Thanks to the IB Committee for organising this whole thing, and for giving Observer information about this year’s race.

Thanks to those who contributed information and pictures to the liveblog. Thanks in particular to Skanda, whose regular updates ensured I didn’t have to rely exclusively on the race tracker.

Finally, thanks to all the runners, volunteers, and supporters. Without you, there would be no IB. Hope you all get a good night’s sleep tonight and take it easy over the next few days.

18.46

With all the teams in, here are the final results according to my calculations:

Note that there may be small errors in this because spreadsheets are not my speciality.

It’s pretty clear that B&G is out in front, followed by Johns, then Bruce. However, you’ll notice I’m not calling the result yet. This is because people have until 9pm to make complaints, and the Referees have until 10am on Monday to come to a decision regarding any complaints/penalties. This can affect the result. It’s happened before – in 2015, B&G was handed a significant penalty due to a supporter bringing alcohol to Send Off, bringing them from middle of the pack to last. That same year, a relatively small penalty cost Johns the overall win. I’m not sure what this penalty was for.

Still, barring significant time or points penalties, it looks like B&G will take out the overall victory and the bill Packard trophy for Div 1. Congratulations!

18.44

So, that’s everyone either finished or pulled out. Well done to all those who participated – you should all be immensely proud of yourselves.

To review, we had three Div 1 teams pull out: Burgmann, Ursies, and Wright. Burgmann was lost in the bush for a few hours, and it looks like Ursies and Wright may have had an injury or similar sudden issue. Griffin Div 3 also pulled out, and again, this may have been an injury issue because they were on the right track. Ursies Div 4 also pulled out, relatively close to End Point – their pace had slowed right down, so they likely wouldn’t have made it in before 7pm, especially given it was getting dark.

Apart from those five teams, everyone finished. This is a pretty good rate. The first team to finish was Burgmann Div 6 at 10:40am, and the first Div 1 team, B&G, finished at 12:04pm. Teams generally came into End Point on the later side, compared to recent years, but this appears to have been intentional on the Race Director’s part.

18.28

UiLodge Div 5 have finished – that’s all teams back now! Congratulations, everyone!

18.27

I’ve received confirmation that Ursies Div 4 has pulled out. In more positive news, Wamburun Div 5 and UniLodge Div 7 have both finished. Now it’s just UniLodge Div 5 to go.

17.57

A bunch of teams have come in to End Point – Ursies Div 3, some Wright teams (I think Divs 4 and 7), some Fenner teams (I think Divs 4 and 1), and Gowrie Div 7. Congratulations!

However, things aren’t looking so good for Ursies Div 4. We’ve received reports that with the light failing, they may be pulling out.

17.46

Also, in case you hadn’t noticed from the results, both of those teams that I said had either had tracker issues or pulled out (Johns Div 4, and one of the Div X teams) successfully finished – so definitely just tracker issues.

17.42

The last few teams are on their way in. Most of those who haven’t finished should be at End Point very soon; the only team who is a little further away is Ursies Div 4, but they’re not too far away, so should be in by 7pm as long as they don’t go too slowly or suddenly get lost.

17.41

The Bruce Div 1 Team have reached End Point! Fenner Div 1 is still running, along with a number of Div 4, 5,6 and 7 teams, who all seem well on their way. It looks like Ursies Div 4 might have run into some kind of problem, as they have slowed right down.

17.17

And now, the odds for Div 5, 6 and 7!

Div 5

Again,the odds were pretty accurate. Griffin finished in 1st place, as predicted, followed by B&G and Johns in 2nd and 3rd place.

Div 6

Unilodge came in at 10th place. It was the outsiders here, Burgmann and Johns, who placed 1st and 2nd.

Div 7

Inward Bound Memes for Long Distance Teams was really backing Griffin here however, B&G finished in 1st place.

16.34

Let’s have another look at Inward Bound Memes for Long Distance Teams’ odds. How did Div 3 and 4 go?

Div 3

Two Div X teams took out 1st and 2nd place. Burgmann ended taking 3rd place, ahead of Johns, who was the favourite team.

Div 4

Burgmann reached End Point first, followed by B&G So far so good. Lodge, which had a long shot, finished ahead of Johns.

16.15

Congratulations to the Div 6 teams, who have now all finished! There is currently still one more Div 2 team, Wamburun, who are making their way to End Point.

 

15.35

Here’s the official current score tally. I think my spreadsheet might have a slight error in it, but not sure where – again, not great at spreadsheets. Still, as can be seen in both, B&G is very far ahead. I think unless they get some point penalties handed down, they should take out the overall title.

14.49

As we can see from my unofficial results spreadsheet, B&G and Burgmann are ahead of the other halls, vying for the overall win. However, we still have a lot of teams to come in, particularly in the higher divisions, and this could shuffle things around.

14.30

While a lot of teams are still running, it’s good to see that they seem to all be on track and heading to End Point. No one is currently wandering around the bush hopelessly lost. That suggests we may not have any more pull-outs.

14.26

Let’s have a look at how accurate the odds posted by Inward Bound Memes for Long Distance Teams ended up being. 

First up: Div 1. 

Favourite Ursies had to pull out. B&G was an outside chance, but ended up winning. 

In Div 2, the odds had B&G as most likely to win, then Ursies, then Johns. Ursies ended up winning, followed by Johns, then B&G, so I’d say this was pretty accurate.

14.13

It’s worth mentioning that it’s now 2pm and we’ve got less than half of the teams back. This is unusual compared to recent years – generally the vast majority of teams have been in by lunch time. Still, it’s not unheard of – in 2015, lots of teams didn’t finish until after 4pm, and some didn’t get in until more like 8pm. According to this year’s rules, teams have until 7pm to finish the race, and they must contact the Race Director before 6pm to let them know how they are tracking.

The first buses back to Canberra will be leaving shortly. I imagine that some people – especially the runners, and volunteers who worked overnight such as drivers – will be keen to get home and sleep after a huge 24 hours.

13.34

I’ve made a little spreadsheet to tally the points of each res hall as the results come in. You can view it here.

Keep in mind that this is before any point penalties – penalties can be applied for a variety of infractions, such as not informing the Race Director of mock drops in advance, and having spectators arrive at End Point too early. Time penalties can also be applied to teams for infractions such as losing gear. This can affect the overall result.

Please also keep in mind that I’m human and not a spreadsheet whiz, so there could be errors.

13.01

Here are the winning teams in each division:

Div 1 – B&G

Div 2 – Ursies

Div 3 – Div X team

Div 4 – Burgmann

Div 5 – Griffin

Div 6 – Burgmann

Div 7 – B&G

So thus far, B&G and Burgmann are doing quite well. Remember, though, that teams in higher divisions get more points than those in lower – it’s better to come 5th in Div 1 than 1st in Div 6, for example.

12.56

B&G Div 7 have finished in first place! That means there’s been at least one team from each division finish.

12.49

Let’s have a look at Div 1. We said last night that 3 teams had taken the southern route and 5 the northern route. The teams all ended up joining up again, so it looks like the early route choice was not determinative.

B&G and Griffin then took different routes, and then met up again. The teams then took the same route to End Point, but B&G was faster so took out first place. Griffin finished in second.

Johns, Bruce, and Fenner are still running. Johns is out ahead, and it looks like Fenner and Bruce are doing a Griffin/B&G, so we’ll see who manages to maintain a higher pace.

Burgmann unfortunately looks to have got very lost between 3am and 9am, heading south rather than east or north. They pulled out shortly after this, from the looks of things.

It looks like Ursies, another team which pulled out, may have had an injury or something. I’m saying this because they were doing fine right up until they stopped suddenly, and then got picked up. A similar thing looks to have happened with Wright.

12.42

The Ursies team is the first to finish Div 2. Congrats!

12.16

Also, apologies, we had a brief period in which the liveblog was having some technical issues. In that time, Burgmann Div 4 finished – the first Div 4 team to do so. A Div X team also finished, being the first to complete the Div 3 course. Well done all.

12.14

Photo by Skanda

The first Div 1 team has finished – congratulations to the B&G team!

11.45

The Div 2 teams all seem to be making good progress. The Div X team caught up to the rest of the pack early this morning. Ursies is out in front, approaching End Point. They’re followed by Johns and then B&G. The rest are all quite close together, with Wamburun trailing slightly.

11.29

Two Griffin teams have just crossed the finish line together. The Griffin Div 5 team is 5th, behind B&G’s team in 4th, and the other Griffin team looks to be Div 5. This would mean that Griffin has one Div 5.

Two Griffin teams finishing together
Photo by Skanda

11.25

It looks like we’ve had a few pull-outs in Div 1 – Ursies, Burgmann, and Wright. Note that this is unconfirmed, but it’s what the tracker seems to indicate. This sucks for the teams, who must have trained really hard, but sometimes it’s necessary – safety first and so on. It’s especially common for Div 1. 2015, for example, had 3 teams out of 7 pull out, although 2016 and 2017 saw all Div 1 teams finish.

11.09

Let’s have a look at Div 3, which Henshall says is his “favourite”. They got dropped at around 11 o’clock last night. According to Henshall, the drop location featured a “fake road” and “another [road] that is very hard to spot”. Fun times. Div 6 2015 and Div 2 2016 were dropped nearby.

Almost all teams went east, with one Div X team taking the south and west route. Henshall says the two routes are about as good as each other. Still, that Div X team seems way out in front – indeed, they’re nearly at End Point.

The Div X team is not far from End Point.

I was wondering what Burgmann was doing, taking such an eastern route, but it seems to have paid off – they’re coming in second. The Ursies team seems to have struggled, doing some doubling back and picking a different route.

Burgmann took a unique route.

Not sure what’s happened with one of the Div X teams. Either their tracker stopped working at about 8:30am, or they’ve had to stop/pull out.

10.56

Two more Div 6 teams have finished – Johns in 2nd and Bruce in 3rd.

10.42

Burgmann Div 6 has arrived, the first team to finish Inward Bound 2019! Congratulations!

Burgmann Div 6
Photo by Skanda

10.40

Supporters are gathering to cheer on the first team in. They can apparently see a Burgmann team, which would be Burgmann Div 6.

Crowd at End Point
Photo by Skanda

10.38

Re; the mid-race scrut, I’ve been told that last year, there had been plans to do one for Div 5 – but because they all ran the wrong way (going through private property), this didn’t end up happening. My source, Siang Jin, says the plan had been to give runners “an extra surprise”. Thanks, Siang Jin!

10.30

Apparently some teams had to do a mid-race scrutineer. I’m told this was Divs 1 and 2. Not sure why at this stage – it’s the first mid-race scrut I’m aware of.

10.11

Div 4 is an interesting one. They got to the drop point at about 1:30am. It looks like either they all then went the exact same way at a similar pace, or they all got moved to a different drop point – this does happen sometimes due to access issues, unexpected hazards, etc. In any case, after that, they split into two groups, with one taking one of the recommended trails and the other taking a path not marked on the tracker, but which does appear to be a trail.

The teams then converged again and proceeded to head south. I’m not sure why they didn’t go west as soon as possible, but I’m sure there’s a reason – I don’t recognise any of the road names in the course setter’s notes so will have to wait on the IB brains trust. Anyway, all teams took the same route, going south and then north, with Burgmann surging ahead.

Something has happened with Johns – either their tracker stopped working at about 6:15am, or they encountered difficulties and had to stop. If they’re still running, I have no idea where they are.

 

09.58

Teams are approaching End Point! It looks like Burgmann Div 6 is out ahead, followed by Div 6 from B&G, Johns, and Bruce.

09.24

Henshall described Div 5 as “one of the trickier drops”. Apparently it would have been difficult for teams to work out where they were. Teams started running around 3 am, and quickly split, with one group going North, one South, and one West.

It looks like Griffin made a good call in heading West – they’re way out ahead. Wright, who also took that direction, seem to have got lost or doubted themselves and done some doubling back. Johns and Ursies headed north and then seemingly engaged in some bush bashing. This appears to have paid off – they’re in 2nd/3rd after Griffin.

09.21

We have some potential info on that “dark zone”. It looks like there was a “fake highway crossing” put in place to trick Divs 1 and 2 – neither team can actually get there due to exclusion zones to the south, but teams may end up thinking they are to the north of the crossing.

This is from the End Point map – picture by Skanda.

09.07

I’m told End Point has reception! To those who are there, we’d love your input – message the Observer Facebook page or email [email protected]

A shot of end point with marquees.
Photo submitted by past Observer human Skanda.

09.05

Now onto Div 6. They got dropped at about 3am. Charlie Henshall’s notes on the Div 6 drop describes the drop location as “easy”, although “which way to run is not”.  Div 6 had a very short scouting time, so Henshall says that the navigators would “have to make a decision and make it fast.”

These are the decisions that were made: B&G, Burgmann, Griffin, Unlilodge and Wamburun have headed north. Bruce, Fenner, Johns, and Ursies headed south. According to the notes, both teams have had to traverse over the peaks of the Tinderry Ranges, but those running southwards had a particularly “brutal” climb. Those who went north had a slightly shorter and less incline-filled route. 

However, it looks like this hasn’t made much of a difference, with the leading pack having teams from both groups. Burgmann, Johns, Bruce, B&G and Ursies are all super close together. 

It looks like Griffin, UniLodge and Wamburun had a bit of an issue and didn’t turn east when they should have. Griffin realised their mistake quite quickly, but Wamburun and UniLodge lost about an hour and a half all told.

08.49

Let’s go through the Divs now, starting with Div 7. They got dropped at around 5am. From that point, the teams really spread out, taking lots of different routes. 

Henshall’s notes state that “it is most likely that Division 7 will be determined by who can pump and race along Woolcara Lane”. Now, honestly, I can’t tell whether any of the teams are on Woolcara Lane; I’ll get more info once my IB assistant (my partner Joel, who has formerly run and coached IB) is awake.

It looks like Burgmann, B&G, and Griffin are out ahead – which will win likely depends on which route is quickest. Johns is engaging in some “bush bashing”, by the looks of things.

08.38

Good morning! By now, supporters should have arrived at End Point – hope everyone got there safely. Let’s take a look at how the teams are tracking.

So far, none have arrived at End Point. The teams currently closest look to be Burgmann and Bruce Div 6, and Griffin Div 5 – but they’ve all still got a reasonable distance to cover, so anything could happen.

That mysterious black box on the left isn’t a glitch by the way – it’s a “dark zone”. We’ll see what info we can get about this; I’ve not seen anything like it before.

01.52

OK, I’m off to bed. I’m liveblogging from home tomorrow, as End Point generally doesn’t have reception, so to everyone heading there: drive safe. In particular, keep an eye out for wildlife – see this relevant meme.

who would win? Car or wombat
Hint: it’s the wombat

Also if you do have signal at End Point, please hit us up! We’d love your pictures and updates from the big event. See you in the morning!

01.47

As to Div 2, all teams look to have taken the same route except for the Div X team featuring IB legend David Baldwin. Usually I’d back any route taken by this team, as Baldwin has run IB for decades. However, it does look like the team is falling behind. Henshall’s notes state that teams will instinctively want to run east, but that this “will add almost 5km” to their route, and that they should instead head west. That seems to be borne out by this data – the Div X team headed immediately east, and is falling behind the teams that went westwards at first. Nevertheless, it’s still very much anyone’s race.

01.40

Let’s take a closer look at Div 1. They were dropped at the green dot in the bottom left and are trying to get to the top-right red dot. 5 teams have taken the northern route, and 3 the southern. The IB Committee has kindly given us guidance notes by course setter Charlie Henshall. Henshall notes that the northern route is “more straightforward” and “seems shorter on the maps”, but that the southern route is actually “slightly shorter and flatter”. Interestingly, the northern route is very similar to the route that the 2018 Div 5 teams should have taken to avoid disqualification.

It’s still too early to say which route choice was ultimately the best.

01.31

Divs 1, 2, and 3 are all off and running. It looks like Div 4 is at the scouting stage, and Div 5 is approaching the drop-off point. For context, the red dot near the ADFA team is End Point.

01.20

It’s getting late, and tomorrow will be an early start for those traveling to End Point. Here are some photos from the send offs yesterday, taken by Digital Editor Konstantinos.

 

00.02

There are a few things that are different this year that are worth noting. 

Firstly, we’ve got a whole heap more halls – Wright and Wamburun are both fielding full or near-full squads, and Gowrie has a Div 7 team. 

Related to this, the new halls have been allowed extra ‘Developmental Participants’. These are people who have run before, but for different res halls. The new halls can have one of these per division. These Developmental Participants essentially then become ex-residents of the new halls after this year.

00.01

Now that some of the Divs have hit the ground running, you may be wondering what the difference between each of the 7 divisions are. Why does Div 1 get sent off 6 hours before Div 7?

The difference comes down to the distance that each division will have to run. Although Div 2’s donut is 0-infinite and Div 3 has no distance donut at all,  Div 1 has a maximum distance of 90 km. This is twice the maximum distance between Drop Off and Endpoint for Div 7, whose donut is 10-45 km. As mentioned previously, the teams will generally cover longer distances than provided by the donut numbers, due to the terrain. The rules state that Div 1 runners need to be able to run 100km, Div 3 75km, Div 5 50km, and Div 7 25km.

23.40

The race tracker is live! You can watch the teams here. It looks like Divs 1, 2 and 3 have been dropped – Div 1 has started running, but Divs 2 and 3 either still in the scouting period or is in the very early stages of running.

23.21

23.11

For those heading to End Point, buses leave at 6:00AM. If you’re driving, you’re not allowed to leave before 6:30AM, and can’t arrive before 7:30AM. Apparently runners won’t be getting in until at least 8:30AM.

23.09

Woolcara is a property about 50 mins to an hour’s drive away from Canberra, out towards Captain’s Flat.

Google Maps directions to Woolcara
It says 47 minutes, but apparently it’s more like an hour due to roadworks.

23.03

End Point has been announced! It’s apparently at ‘Woolcara’. That’s South-West of Canberra.Woolcara

22.49

Div 7 isn’t quite on the way yet – apparently there’s been a bus delay. They’ll be heading off shortly.

22.22

Div 6 are now on their way. Only one more send off to go!

21.11

Some photos that Konstantinos, our Digital Editor, took of the Div 5 Send Off before the rain suddenly came over. Luckily the camera is fine, and the runners have a few hours on a bus to dry off.

Div 5 Fenner Div 5 Ursies

20.54

Div 5 has been sent off! It was raining, so that’s fun; perhaps bring an umbrella if you’re coming along to the Div 6 and 7 Send Offs.

20.20

What’s the weather going to be like for those running? It’s been rather warm the last few days, but it’s looking like there’s a good chance of rain. Here in Canberra, it’s getting down to 10 degrees, and there’s about a 70% chance of rain between midnight and sunrise. Outside of the city, it’s going to be getting a bit colder – down to 6 degrees in the Brindabella mountain range (to the West) and Captains Flat (to the East).

The Captains Flat weather forecast
It’s getting a bit damp and chilly this evening.

20.00

Back to the present day, and let’s take a look at the slogans of each of the halls. For context, all the res halls put their runners in special shirts, and these tend to have slogans on them (as well as the division and the hall).

  • Ursies – Green & dangerous, like our broccoli caterpillars (seemingly a reference to this incident)
  • Johns – Can’t stop this drop
  • Wright – IB never felt so Wright
  • Bruce – Returning home
  • BnG – Love your contours
  • UniLodge – It’s about the destination, not the journey
  • Fenner – Relocated but hydrated
  • Wamburun – Wamba go big zoomies
  • Griffin – Can’t get injured if you don’t train

I don’t know the Burgmann slogan at present, and I’m also not 100% certain on the UniLodge one – so if you’re from either of those halls, let me know!

19.46

Another noteworthy feature of last year’s race was Div 5: only one team successfully completed the race. Seven teams were disqualified for going through private property. Two teams realised the private property issue mid-run and doubled back, but did not finish. One Div X (ie not res hall) team successfully finished the race, avoiding private property altogether.

19.32

Let’s take a look back at last year. The final results were:

1st – B&G

2nd – Johns

3rd – Burgmann

4th – Ursies

5th – Bruce

6th – UniLodge

7th – Fenner

8th – Griffin

Burgmann took out the Bill Packard trophy for winning Div 1. Notably, there were some penalties handed out after the race – 3 points for Bruce and 7 points for Burgmann. These were due to failing to notify the Race Director of significant training events with enough notice.

19.16

Div 4 is off and away!

19.12

Perhaps to make up for last year’s lack of donuts, this year there is a second kind of donut: the scouting donut. This is a bit different to the traditional donut; instead of giving distance, it’s a range of times that teams have been told to expect to be given for scouting.

  • Div 1 – 0-100mins
  • Div 2 – 20-40mins
  • Div 3 – 20-40mins
  • Div 4 – 5-35mins
  • Div 5 – 10-30mins
  • Div 6 – 0-25 mins
  • Div 7 – 10-30mins

0 minutes of scouting time would be quite nerve-wracking. Scouting is the only time when teams can split up, so a short or non-existent scouting time means that the team has to hope it’s right near key clues, or be willing to run in a random direction all together to find clues.

19.02

OK, so you might be wondering, what are these ‘donuts’ we keep mentioning? They’re basically guides about the location of the drop off location relative to the End Point. So, teams might be told that they are dropped between 10km and 60km away from the End Point. The name ‘donut’ is from what it looks like when you represent this information visually – a small circle (the minimum distance) inside a bigger circle (the maximum distance), centred around the End Point coordinates. Last year, for the first time in recent memory, no donuts were given – teams had no idea how far they were from End Point. This year, the donuts are as follows:

  • Div 1 – 0-90km
  • Div 2 – 0-infinite
  • Div 3 – no donut
  • Div 4 – 7-60km
  • Div 5 – 10-55km
  • Div 6 – 10-50km
  • Div 7 – 10-45km

Keep in mind, this is the distance as the crow flies – the terrain means that teams can’t just run in a straight line to End Point.

18.43

End Point: This is basically a huge celebration. Supporters from all the different res halls attend, and cheer on runners – even those not from their own hall. Teams are scrutineered one last time to make sure they didn’t drop anything on the way, and then they are free to celebrate (or, more likely, sleep).

18.36

Running: Pretty self-explanatory. The team runs to End Point, hoping that no one gets injured, that the navigators worked out the drop off point correctly, and that they don’t come across any unexpected pine forests.

18.28

Route plotting: Using information from the scouts, alongside ‘donuts’ (more on donuts later), the navigator and co-navigator work out where the team was dropped. They then plan a route to End Point. They can pick basically any route they want, except that they can’t go into areas designated as out of bounds, can’t go onto private property except if it’s been explicitly ‘whitelisted’, and can’t go along/across highways or railway tracks, except at designated highway crossing spots.

18.21

Scouting: Two members from each team run off in different directions. The job of these scouts is to collect information to help work out where they have been dropped. Scouts look for information such as road signs, creeks, slopes, and other features such as huts. They have to be back with the rest of their team before the scouting times ends, so it’s a bit of a balancing act between getting enough info and getting back in time.

18.08

Drop Off: Runners are dropped off at the designated point and allowed to remove their blindfolds. They are given information including the coordinates of End Point and the details of out-of-bounds locations.

Teams are also told how long they have for the scouting period. This used to be a standard time (20 or 40 minutes depending on Division), but is now variable – more on that later.

17.56

The drive (a few hours after Send Off): Team are driven to the drop-off locations. However, they are not taken directly there. Instead, they are driven around in loops and to random places (last year some teams went through Yass) so they are completely disoriented when they get to the drop-off point. You might think this is overkill, but it’s actually somewhat necessary – I’ve had runner friends who have been able to work out their location on mock drops (practice IB runs) by noting the turns made.

Fun fact: runners stay blindfolded even during toilet breaks; they have to be guided around by buddies. Fun times.

17.40

And that’s Div 3 out! The sun’s going to start setting so not sure if the light will be good enough for photos of later Send Offs.Runners heading to the bus

17.23

1 hour before Send Off: Official scrutineering takes place. This involves checking that the teams have the required items. What are the required items, you ask? Well, each runner must have:

  • A headtorch
  • A compass
  • A jumper
  • A beanie
  • A pair of gloves
  • Thermal underwear
  • Long pants
  • A waterproof jacket
  • A reflective strip of fabric on their backpack
  • A whistle
  • A space blanket
  • Photo ID
  • A basic watch
  • A hat
  • 2L of water
  • Food (about 1kg)

In addition, each team must have:

  • A mobile phone (this gets sealed up and is used for emergencies)
  • Bandages for snakebites (teams get given basic first aid kits)
  • Sunscreen

Teams are also permitted/encouraged to carry water purification tablets, a film or disposable camera, and personal medications.

17.10

1-2 hours before Send Off: many res halls do their own individual Send Off events. In my time at Ursies, this typically included the div running through a specially-painted banner to their chosen theme song. They then journey to Wright Hall for official scrutineering.

16.57

A few hours before Send Off: runners begin their preparations at their respective residential halls. Non-runners help out with this. Activities often include: braiding long hair; strapping any injury-prone areas; taping backs to avoid “pack rash”; and checking that their bags have the required gear (more on that later).

16.44

There goes Div 2!

Supporters and Div 2 runners

The breeze is starting to pick up, so I’d recommend bringing a jumper if you’re planning to come out for the later Send Offs.

16.17

In between Send Off posts, I’m going to do a few posts taking you through what today looks like for runners. 

Disclaimer: I’ve never run IB, and the last time I lived at a residential hall (Ursies) was 2016, so there could be some generalisations or outdated info here. Still, it should give you the gist.

15.53

Here are the times for the rest of the Send Offs:

Div 2: 4:30PM

Div 3: 5:30PM

Div 4: 7:ooPM

Div 5: 8:30PM

Div 6: 10:00PM

Div 7: 10:30PM

15.50

There was a great crowd at Send Off. Send Off was traditionally held at Bruce Hall, but it moved to Burgmann when the Bruce/Wright construction was underway. This new set-up down the hill gives the chance for some great photos.The crowd at endpoint

15.45

Div 1 is on its way!

All Div 1 runners lined up
There are some interesting haircuts in the mix.

14.14

While we wait for things to kick off, here’s a link to last year’s Observer IB liveblog! We also want to give a shout out to the official Inward Bound Facebook page, which has a lot of useful information on the event, and is the source of our graphic. We also recommend checking out Inward Bound Memes for Long Distance Teens if our memes aren’t enough to satisfy your meme addiction,

12.53

Welcome to Observerliveblog of Inward Bound 2019! We’ll be liveblogging send off this afternoon and the race itself tomorrow, providing updates on the race, analysis from ex-runners, and also some memes.

Send Off is this afternoon and evening at Bruce/Wright, and you can find more information about it here. If you can’t make it, don’t worry, we’ll be giving you updates and photos from right here on the blog. The first send off, for Div 1, will take place at 3:30PM.

We’re really keen to share content from our readers! If you’re an ex-runner or coach who’s willing to share your experiences, a supporter at endpoint tomorrow who by some miracle has phone reception, or if you’re keen to share some IB memes, please contact the ANU Observer Facebook page, or email [email protected] We’d love to hear from you (and it will mean you won’t need to see as many of my own terrible memes).

Thanks for joining us today, and we’re looking forward to blogging with you over the next couple of days!