Pocket Race Guide - Speedy Spring/ Summer Races
Blink and you’ll miss them – this is the runnersworld.co.uk guide to 2011’s speedy, summer races.
Cardiff Bay is buzzing thanks to a thorough rejuvenation and now it's the perfect racing ground for the May bank holiday. Start in the bustle of the bay, soak up the sights of the historic industrial port and then get ready for a fierce dash. Prepare for a strong headwind as you speed across the famous barrage linking Cardiff and Penarth and keep your eyes peeled for wildlife in the freshwater bay. A PB is there for the taking in this flat five-miler and all abilities are welcome to join the good mix of runners. Bring along new recruits for the fun 2K run.
Head to the iconic home of British motor racing for an explosively fast race. Blast around two laps of the flat circuit in pursuit of your PB, with only the headwind posing a slight obstacle to a fast moving pack of runners. Slick organisation and chip-timing means you can enjoy pitting yourself against the competitive course record. This well-established event is part of the eight-race East Midlands Grand Prix Series and it's the perfect way to inject some mid-week excitement.
Combine quick running with a fantastically scenic route. Runners start their Sunday chase in the charming town of Hastings, before enjoying a dash along the seafront and then finishing to the applause of crowds in the town centre. Get your race entry in early as this speedy event books up fast. It's also part of the Sussex Grand Prix and there's a range of prizes on offer, so make sure you put your competitive hat on!
Watch the sun setting over the Queen Mother Reservoir in this midweek race series, or just focus on chipping away at your PB. Pick from either one (5K) or two (10K) pancake-flat laps around the reservoir over a mixture of grass and track. If you're coming straight from work, the excellent race HQ at Datchet Water Sailing Club offers refreshments, changing, onsite parking and bag supervision. Enter a single event or opt for all three to join in this popular series and set your PB tumbling.
Other events in this series:
Race 2 (June 14)
Race 3 (July 19)
Breathtaking views of the white cliffs of Dover and a fantastically flat course are guaranteed to lure runners to this brand new summer race series. Set in the unique and protected landscape of Samphire Hoe, you'll tear past grasslands abundant with the pink blooms of restharrow and although there'll be no bluebirds on the famous Dover horizon, you might spot a seasonal blue butterfly or two. Runners of all abilities are welcome to take part in one or all three of these idyllic summer races, and an overall winner of all three will be crowned.
Other events in this series:
Race 2 (June 29)
Finals Night (August 31)
Picture credit: Danita Delimont/ Getty Images
The quiet village of Woodhall Spa is normally a place to retreat and relax, with its easy-on-the eye Edwardian buildings and magnificent pine forest buffer. However, one day of the year its tranquil country lanes are home to a fleet of fast and furious runners. Join the fray and spot the elite talent who travel to this super-speedy chase. There's also a bargain three-mile fun run on offer.
Aberdare 10K (Rhondda Cynon Taff, July 3)
Spring into Sunday morning and get your legs spinning on one of the fastest road races around. Follow a flat road race from Penderyn to Aberdare Leisure Centre on this early morning chase. Keep the pace up right until the fun trackside finish with the long downhills in the second half of the race. Bask in the glory of a new PB and get the feel good factor from the support this charity dash gives to Macmillan Cancer Support. There's also a free shuttle bus, changing facilities and a goody bag included in the price.
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