Short version: It’s the second time I’ve run Tadworth 10, and I’d do it again in a heartbeat!
Long version: On the first non-bank holiday Sunday of the year, the Tadworth Athletic Club put on Tadworth 10. This is a 10 mile race across Epsom race course and through the Epsom Downs. There are hills, there is mud, there are some good road sections – what more could you want to start the year with! This year, add in some cold and some wind.
They also had some fab help from the Sunnybank Trust, supporting adults and young people with learning disabilities.
Tadworth 10 Route
The Day of Tadworth 10
This is a lusciously late start for a race (11.30) so no need to rush first thing.
I got up at 7.30, sorted coffee, sorted some more coffee, had my pre-race breakfast of honey on toast. I put on my kit and headed out the door.
Off I went to get a lift with folks from my running club.
We got there early. We were the second car in the car park for runners. Getting out of the car, it was cold and windy, the sort of cold that goes straight through you. We quickly headed to the warmth of the grandstand.
Number and tag picked up and sorted and then time to hang about in the warmth, chatting to club folk and waiting to spot some folks from Twitter.
The first person for me to say hello to was Steve. Steve was the key person in putting the event together.
Then on to say hello to lots of other folks from Twitter!
I headed out into the cold with @TheCoffeeRunGB. It was bitterly cold.
At 11.30, off we went. Over the racecourse, down some hills, up some hills, then out onto footpaths. There was mud but less than I had been expecting. The previous weekend, folks had been out digging channels to let some of the water drain out so we wouldn’t be swimming in mud on the day.
Two laps, 5 miles. I did this race in 2015. I’ve done a lot of running since then. What did surprise me is the hill I remember as being painfully steep really wasn’t that steep at all.
The issue for me is there was nothing in my legs. Now, I’m used to this for the first few miles, but on it went. Even with the hills, it felt a lot harder than it generally would for 10 miles. This did annoy me at various points but sometimes races are like that.
There was great support from the marshals and a few, as well as residents, handing out jelly babies. The real treat was on the second lap at the water station having a bit of flapjack. By this point, I was taking my time and enjoying the scenery – even stopping off for a photo or two along route.
My chip time was 1:49:29. Not one to write home about but onwards and upwards! I’ve got a lot I want to get done this year!
Would I do this race again?
Of course. Key positives were:
- Starts as 11.30 am so no having to rush
- You get the warmth of the stadium and no portaloos in sight! Real toilets instead.
- It has a lovely community feel – with marshals and helpers from the local running club and the Sunnybank Trust.
- Bag check well organised and very quick.
- The course is unique – how many other races do you get to run across a racecourse.
- OK, so this year, there was bling. In previous years they have given out hats, gloves etc. I even heard one year they gave out frozen lasagnes! To be honest, I’m not sure what I’d prefer but it is a lovely keepsake.
- Course is really well marked with no possibility of runners getting lost!
- And as with many races run by clubs, no goodie bags which is great as they’re generally full of stuff that goes straight into the bin or recycling.
Someone did mention last year they did have chips for after the race. Perhaps bring out that deep fryer for next year!
All in all, a fantastic day so a big thank you to all of you who had a role to play.
*With thanks to @Whiffenpuff for the title!