Course...Leg 4.....Mile 17......Just after the Relay changeover point on Victoria Road, it's left onto the quays, past Carey's Tools and left again onto Albert Street. Now the road really opens out as you go past the next 2 bends, past Brownlows and onto the South Link Road. From here, there is a slight climb up to the next junction as shown below.
After running on the flat for so long, this will test the Marathon runners to see if they can maintain the pace. Then it flattens out as you run out the link road. Again, there is another railway connection here as you are running along the route of the old Cork to Bandon railway line. Soon, you'll see the 2nd overhead bridge. So, it's under it and then take a left for a very steep short climb. You hit the 17 mile mark around here. An easy mile with plenty of commotion in the middle!
Mile 18...... It starts with a steep climb up from the South Link Road but it's only 50 metres or so long. Then left, over the bridge, through the next junction and a short steep downhill section to Turners Cross. Left at the junction here and onto the Curragh Road. Now, the road is pretty flat as you head for the Kinsale Road and pass the turn off for Ballyphehane. Just after this is another water station. As well as offering plain water, they may have sports drinks here as well. If you are doing the relay, you don't need to take them. If you are doing the full marathon, you should consider taking one as the glucose from the drink will help you to conserve your bodies own supply. Note that sometimes Sports drinks don't agree with everyone, especially when they are running. The glucose will also take a while to get into your system.....perhaps 2 to 3 miles later.On to the junction by Woodies, right onto the Tramore Road and past the back of the Musgrave Park rugby grounds. A slight downhill and then a long flat secton. Out along here is the 18 mile mark. An easy enough mile but that short sharp climb can be difficult on tired legs.
Mile 19......Right at the next turn off and a slight pull uphill. For 2017, you turn right...through the crossroads and a gradual climb up to Tory Top Park.
This is a new hill and not a welcome one for marathon runners. After Tory Top Park, the running is reasonable. A slow enough mile.
Mile 20.........Left onto Pouladuff Road and down into Ballyphehane. Right then towards the Lough. Now onto Hartlands Avenue and there is a slight uphill section from here until the next set of traffic lights, straight through and left onto the 20 mile mark. A reasonable mile...very fast downhill start and a slow hills in the second half.
Mile 21.........After the 20 mile mark, there is a gradual downhill until you cross over onto College Road. You turn left onto Orchard Road and then downhill to the road by Victoria Cross. This section of the course is very fast. You pay for it however on the other side when you enter Farranlea Road.
There are some nasty pulls along here which will be felt especially by the marathon runners. Overall...the downhill running at the start of this mile won't compensate for the second half. Expect to lose time here.
After the 21 mile mark, there is a slight climb out of Farrnalea Park which is another effort.
Once you're onto the Model Farm Road, there is another tiny pull but this is the end of the climbing.
From there, it's downhill to the relay changeover at about the 21.6 mile mark.
Overall.......It's 5.8 miles in length and it is probably is the hardest leg of the five. Loads of small pulls which will have an impact on tired legs.
Click here for relay leg 5