RW Previews: Hastings Lions Half, March 14, Sussex

Where and when?
Sunday, March 14, Sussex

What is it?
After finishing in second place, in RW's top 100 races of 2003 (behind the FLM), a race preview of the 2004 edition became almost inevitable.

The route is demanding (to start with, at least) and allegedly traces the path that William I embarked upon when landing on these shores in 1066. The only differences are that you’ll be equipped with a neat, new pair of shoes and not a skull-splitting axe and a medieval A to Z.

The route takes you around the town and through the old quarters - where you'll be sung on by church choirs - and covers plenty of scenic countryside.

After a short false flat, the race heads away from the coast and tackles what can only be described as a beast of a climb, lasting for two miles. It’s not all doom and gloom though. After the first mile you’ll be greeted by a choir, who’ll be whipping out a rendition of ‘Climb Every Mountain’. With your lungs attempting to make a bid for freedom through your rib cage, the irony might well be unappreciated.

Once over the top, the course undulates through the picturesque Old Town. Along All Saints Street, you’ll pass houses previously owned by John Logie Baird (he created some invention or other) and the alleged comedienne, Jo Brand.

Then it’s through the local tall net huts of the fishing market, before a sharp, long descent back down to the Pier, and a flat finish.

What you said in Readers' Races of the Year 2003:
Emma Harradine: "This was one of the most memorable races of the year! You'll enjoy yourself so much you won't notice the pain... until afterwards. It is not the sort of course that will ever give you a PB, but you won't care."

Susan Leighton: "Just loved it. The support, the weather, the awfully long hill, the theme tune and the sea. It was my first, and you always remember your first!"

Jamie Blythe: "Made the hill at the top worth it when so many people were by the hospital!"

RW says:
"A good confidence-booster, with a real big-race feel."

What the organiser says:
"I designed the route, it’s great!" Thanks for that.

Watch Out For:
The folk from St.Helen’s retirement home come out and bang pots and pans together. We kid you not.

Any extras:
Great prizes on offer.

How to enter:
Click here: