Fancy testing your running endurance? This 80km race based in North Cyprus certainly does that and is therefore not for beginners or those who find a normal marathon too testing. There is an entry fee and once all costs have been met the surplus will be donated to the Alagadi Turtle Conservation Project.
THE START: Saturday May 23, 2015: Lionheart 80km – 5am at Kantara Castle; Braveheart 30 km – 1pm at Alevkayasi/Herbarium (Checkpoint 5); Mountain Goat run 10km – 4pm at Buffavento Castle (CP7)
THE FINISH: Final arrival time for all runners: 8.30pm at Ambelia holiday village in Bellapais.
CUT-OFF TIMES FOR 80km:
Final finish time: 8:30pm (15h30 time limit)
Checkpoint 6 (Five Fingers): Must leave by 5.00pm
Checkpoint 7 (Buffavento Castle – 70km): Must leave checkpoint by 7.00 pm
RACE STATS: Lionheart 80km: Lowest point: 140m; Highest point: 900m (top of Buffavento Castle); Positive altitude change: 2800 metres Braveheart 27km: Lowest point: 250m (Ambelia) Highest point: 900m Mountain Goat Run 10km: Lowest point: 250m (Ambelia) Highest point: 900m
THE COURSE: The first 30km is relatively easy going on mainly jeep track in the cooler part of the day but from then on, just as it is starting to get hot, the route goes up and up and down and up over some really challenging single track and sometimes no track, hard underfoot rocky terrain — including a steep ascent to the top of Buffavento Castle at CP7 on weary legs. Be prepared for your second half split to be MUCH slower than your first half. The Braveheart 30km is a challenging run over the toughest trail sections of the route from Checkpoint 5 to the end, but, like the Lionheart runners, Braveheart runners will have to climb all the way to the top of Buffavento Castle and down again before continuing to the end at Bellapais. Mountain Goat runners will start with a run to the top of Buffavento Castle from CP7, back down again and then on to Bellapais.
How to enter – 80km Lionheart Race
Fill in the entry form. Hit the register button.
To pay, click the Paypal button and follow the prompts. If you prefer to pay some other way please let us know by email to [email protected]
The fee gets you a goodie bag, plenty of replenishments (food and drinks) at the checkpoints, transport from Bellapais to the start of your race, drop bag transport, tog bags deposited at the finish line, medics on standby in case of emergency, a sweeper vehicle for those who decide to drop out of the race and stylish finishers’ awards… and the magic of the mountains. T-shirts will be provided should we secure a sponsor.
The fee does NOT cover airport pickups, accommodation and incidental expenses. Please provide your own electrolytes!
We will provide refuelling points every 10-12km where we will offer runners water, POWERADE, Coke, bananas, nuts, oranges, biscuits and crisps. However, runners are required to cater to their own needs between the checkpoints. BE WARNED: it could be hot and much of the route, especially towards the end, is very steep and rugged — a 10km stretch could take two hours or more. Be prepared!
We are a NON-PROFIT group — any spare change once all costs have been met will be donated to the Alagadi Turtle Conservation Project, one of the coolest ventures on the island.
Taner Derviş, a former director of the Cyprus Islamic Trust (Kıbrıs Vakıflar İdaresi), will be giving a series of conferences about the ownership of Maraş/Varosha Evkaf land in Cyprus. This seaside town, uninhabited since the 1974 War in Cyprus, has been at the centre of European court cases and was also the focus of an ITV documentary. There have been calls to allow the original owners to return to this once popular resort town in Famagusta in northwest Cyprus but the Turkish side reject Greek Cypriot claims of ownership, asserting that Maraş is primarily Evkaf property.
Ersu Ekrem, the deputy chair of the British Turkish Cypriot Association (BTCA), explained that:
“In 2005, Xenides-Arestis, a Greek Cypriot refugee, won a famous victory at the European Court of Human Rights claiming ownership and compensation for her family land in Maraş. Yet the court ignored the clear fact that the British authorities had illegally transferred ownership of Evkaf land to her grandfather in 1913. Not only did they have no such right – Evkaf land cannot be expropriated under any circumstances – the transaction took place before the British even had sovereign control over the island!”
If you are interested in this topic. all three events are free and open to members of the public. However attendance at the Parliament event requires advance registration. The dates and venues for next week’s conferences are as follows:
- Tuesday 27 January, 7pm at London University – Jeffrey Hall, 20 Bedford Way, London WC1 OAL. Seminar in English.
- Wednesday 28 January, 6-8pm at House of Commons – Boothroyd Room in Portcullis House. Seminar in English (prior registration and photo ID for attendees is required).
- Thursday 29 January, 7.30pm at Regency Banqueting Suite – 113 Bruce Grove, Tottenham, London N17 6UR. Seminar in Turkish.
Event info and registration for Parliament talk via BTCA: email: [email protected]
The French energy company Total looks set to abandon a search for oil and gas off Cyprus after failing to find evidence of reserves there. Total was one of 15 companies that participated in Cyprus’s second oil and gas licensing round in 2012. News of Total’s likely withdrawal comes after Italian-Korean energy consortium ENI-Kogas said its first test drill had come up dry. These events, along with the plummeting price of gas and oil, puts in question a South Cyprus revival based on gas and oil. Added to the south’s woes is the fact that Troika bailout money also seems to have dried up.
The south’s energy minister, Yiorgos Lakkotrypis, explained that:
“The company informed us some months ago that it was having difficulty finding any structures, targets, in the blocks it had a licence for… and they informed us last September they had not found any target to drill.”
The south has ambitions to become a hub for not only its own gas exports but also for Israeli and even Lebanese ones, but needs to find more gas reserves to make a land terminal financially viable. There are plans to build a liquefied natural gas plant at Vassiliko on the island’s southern coast but it now seems there are insufficient reserves to make that option feasible.
It now appears that the south is looking to Russia for help. According to the Cyprus Mail, Moscow’s ambassador to Cyprus, Stanislav Osadchiy, holds out hope that the Russians will be establishing a military base in the south. A cabinet decision in January 2014 allowed Russia access to the Andreas Papandreou military airbase in Paphos for humanitarian purposes and in emergency situations and there seems to be a Russian expectation that this will be developed into something more permanent.
The south seems to regularly seek out strong allies to rescue them, in 1974 and 2004 it cost them dearly.
At Cyprus checkpoints Greek Cypriot police are scanning and registering foreigner’s passports when they cross to and from the north. Greek Cypriots and Turkish Cypriots using the south’s ID cards were not being registered. Police spokesman, Andreas Angelides, explained that:
“Apart from airports and ports where we already took extra measures, we have applied extra measures to the crossing points even though there has been no specific threat. There is no imminent threat or knowledge of a threat. There are extra police everywhere, not just the checkpoints. The entire force’s personnel will be utilised for better controls.” [Cyprus Mail]
Normally when someone crosses from the south to the north they are not checked and are free to just walk across. Returning, they may occasionally be asked to show their passports or ID but nothing is registered by police at the crossing points.
The argument put forward by the South Cyprus government was that scanning paspports was as a precaution in case of a terrorist threat or attack in the south of the island where a terrorist fled to the north. Police would then have a record of their movements. Police in the north already register everyone who crosses in either direction. However, this does not explain why a terrorist with a forged copy of the south’s ID cards would avoid this check.
I wondered how long it would be before Greek Cypriots stopped pretending the crossings were not borders between the two countries.
At 10:59am, according to Afrika newspaper (19.01.15), on the July 20th 2015 Cyprus Peace Operation anniversary, water will flow from Turkey and arrive in Cyprus. Of course, Afrika newspaper was joking about the time, making fun of the numerous dates that have been published and bypassed.
Turkish Minister of the Environment and Natural Resources, Hakan Dincyurek, said that the “project of the century’s” land phase is continuing on target but the sea phase has been held up due to seasonal weather conditions. That’s right, ‘seasonal’. It beats me how a project can be behind because of expected factors. He said that:
“In line with the project on the 25th of January, the dam in Turkey will be filled with water and I together with Veysel Eroglu will be there to witness the event.”
According to North Cyprus President Eroglu:
“The investment cost of the Alakopru and Gecitkoy dams for the water project are close to 80 million Turkish lira ($36.6 million) and the project will supply around 130 million cubic meters of water to the TRNC every year.”
Some would say that Cyprus needs water more than gas or oil and that the water project is a bit of Turkish one-upmanship showing that they can deliver an important project whereas the south will remain stalled indefinitely in its attempt to bring gas and oil to the island. Whatever happens many observers say that both projects will in the end bring limited benefits and that both the water and the gas and oil will end up being uneconomic.
This short article is to give you ideas about how to Visit London. It will tell you about how to Travel to London and about Accommodation and Sightseeing. One of the benefits of visiting London in the winter and spring is that although the weather is usually poor the same sights are available and prices for accommodation and international travel are usually much lower than summer and autumn.
In this article links are given showing you some of the offers available during this period.
You could use Car Hire, a Bus, a Train or visit by Air
Stay in London
There are many places to Stay in London and these are just a few places we can recommend
London Theatre Show
While you are visiting take in a London Theatre Show. Use one of these booking agents we can recommend.
There are many ways to go about your London Sightseeing but the ones below can be booked online, in advance.
Now, I’m not sure if I agree with this quote from the Cyprus Mail [18/1/15] but should it be true then the south’s President Anastasiades has painted himself into a corner:
‘The objective of Ban Ki-moon and Espen Barth Eide is quite clearly the resumption and, ultimately, the successful conclusion of the talks. They therefore avoided condemning Turkey’s actions to keep it on side and included a veiled threat to the Greek Cypriots about ending the isolation of the Turkish Cypriots in order to pressure Anastasiades to abandon his conditions and return to the talks’ ¹
By refusing to return to the table and negotiate a settlement to the Cyprus problem Anastasiades has forced the United Nations team to conclude that these negotiations have not just stalled, they have ended. They are no more, they have ceased to be, expired and gone! Once the UN realises this they have little left they can do except accept that in 2004 the Turkish Cypriots were betrayed after they voted yes for a solution only to discover they had instead voted yes for the south to enter the EU. That betrayal has met with little practical response from the UN and the Turkish Cypriots could be excused from now taking more radical action to break away from the south. If the UN does not preempt such an action then they are in danger of losing the plot. At the moment, with the Middle East in turmoil, if the UN does not show leadership in the area then the players will look elsewhere for leadership, in my opinion .
¹ Cyprus Mail
The UN Secretary General’s report shows concern at Turkish Cypriot isolation. Bank Ki-moon also failed to condemn Turkey’s activities off the coast of Cyprus, displeasing the south’s government. The south’s President, Nicos Anastasiades, took the report as an attempt to force his back to the negotiation table
“I want to say one thing; I will not bow, under any circumstances, and be dragged into talks under threat or blackmail.”
In many ways Anastasiades was the best chance Cyprus had for a solution and the UNSG realises that as Anastasiades has no intention of negotiating a solution then the talks are over. However, it appears that the UN are now instead focusing on doing something about the north’s isolation. You have to wonder why the UN would want to continue dealing with the south when there are far more advantages in dealing with the north who are the only party who have supported a solution. In 2004 they voted to accept the UN’s Annan Plan.
What the UN could do is another matter, although a re-look at the United Nations Security Council Resolution which caused this isolation could end up with a different voting pattern. Or they could wait another 50 years?
The south’s government today agreed that the finance ministry should finance advisors as to how to set up a new airline, that will use the logo and name of Cyprus Airways. These advisors are expected to set up an action plan for establishing a new airline.
According to Papadopoulos,
“following the closure of Cyprus Airways, the cabinet deemed the setting up of a new company as urgent, in order to ensure that Cyprus maintains its accessibility to other countries.”
This is despite the communications Minister suggesting that connectivity to the rest of the world had been ensured via the stepping in of other airlines like Romania-based low cost airline Blue Air and Aegean Airlines announcing it would expand its operations significantly, aiming at tripling its market share in Cyprus.
Yet the deputy government spokesman pointed out that actions to utilise the Cyprus Airways brand name and logo – which the state bought for €1.2 million last month – must be used immediate. “The logo’s worth would decrease as time goes by,” he explained.
Due to this pressure of time, the cabinet approved a €134,000 fee for each advisor. No mention of how many advisors they needed!!!
Unbelievable! Food banks, high unemployment, uncertainty about the next bailout money due to the stance surrounding non-performing loans and it is deemed necessary to invest in a National airline and throw loads of money at advisors? I could give them advice for just a few quid – don’t do it, invest in your people (give jobs to your youth so that your talent remains on the island) don’t throw money at a “status symbol”. To have paid millions for a logo when your people need basic essentials shows a total lack of reality and emphasises just whose needs are truly being met and it isn’t the everyday Cypriot.
Amazingly, Cyprus Airways, owned by the south’s government, has tried unsuccessfully to hide the two planes it owns. According to the Daily Mail:
‘Cyprus Airways has reportedly flown its fleet of planes to a remote Welsh airfield in a bid to prevent them being seized over a row about paying back 65 million euros (£51million) in illegal state funding.
The struggling airline flew its Airbus A320s to a ‘secret storage location’ in the UK after completing its last flights on Friday.
But an online tracking website has shown the planes are at St Athan airfield on the outskirts of Cardiff.’
In my opinion, this shows a lot about the way that the south’s government deals with the EU. They show one face when they want money but when they have to pay anything back they show the other face. Nothing has changed since 1960 when they did the same when they negotiated independence. They arranged to work with Turkish Cypriots until it suited them to dump them from government in 1963. The same in 1974 when they then wanted enosis with Greece and then complained when Turkey intervened. Then in 2004 when they wanted EU membership only to vote against the Annan Plan which would have solved the Cyprus problem and sent Turkish troops home.
No wonder Turkish Cypriots want nothing to do with a Cyprus controlled by Greek Cypriots.