A few details to iron out before online entries go live - there will only be 125 max entries for this first year - it will first come first served. We will give a least a weeks notice before going live!
The idea of having a long distance race in Locke Park is not new, the possibilities were considered over 10 years ago, initially thinking about a marathon – but there a few reasons why not to go for the full marathon. The idea initially emerged from the fact the loop is close to being an exact mile – and with key adjustments it can be made to an exact mile. So a marathon would have to have different start and finish points – which would then create some problems finding suitable locations, whereas the 20 miles the start line is also the finish – no problem, and with chip timing (to keep count of the laps) accurate split time feedback is available.
There are also plenty of other marathons about, and not many 20 milers – also the available date on the calendar means that 20 miles is a good warm up for the spring marathons.
And finally from an organisers / officials / marshals point of view, it will be about an hour less in duration than a marathon!
So why now?
The running community has established itself in Locke Park and via the Friends of Locke Park have lobbied for improvements to the paths – phase 1, path parallel to Corporation Road has now been completed. Phase 2 removal protruding tree roots on the approach the island bridge will be undertaken shortly. So the course is now safer and the areas mentioned would have been more of an issue for tired runners toward the end of 20 miles than the weekly 5k parkrun.
This is also an opportunity for the running community to put something back into the park with any profits from the race going to the Friends of Locke Park (and also the Pie & Pea 5 mile on May 15th).
20 times a 1 mile loop in Locke Park, Redcar? This may not be every runner’s cup of tea - but there are some advantages:
You will pass the water station every mile
You will pass toilets every mile
No long lonely roads - your personal support crew can shout you on at several points during each lap!
Chip timing - provides not just a finish time but mile split times as well, and as each mile is exactly the same the only thing that might change will be the weather. Talking of the weather - the park does provide some shelter and if it does turn out to be a windy day, then you won't be faced with running for miles into a head wind!