Thursday, 8 August 2013

Yateley 10k : August 2013 Edition

The Yateley 10k is a race I've run and written about repeatedly (August 2010, June 2012, July 2012 and Aug 2012). It's one of the few races I will consider doing every year. It's another of the local mid-week race series we're blessed with in this neck of the woods, organised by Sandhurst Joggers for the first Wednesday of June, July and August. It's pretty inexpensive, especially considering it's a chip-timed, semi-closed road event (cars are on the roads but there's plenty of signs warning that runners have priority the marshalls do a superb job of managing the traffic) and you get a brilliant medal at the end. You can choose to order a race series t-shirt which I did one year but it was cotton so I haven't got one since. There's loads of parking, mostly on site or a short walk away, prizes for the top 3 male and female runners in each age category and a 1.5k fun run for the kids, making this a real family event.

1 Race£12:001 Race£14:00
2 Races£22:002 Races£24:00
Race Series£30:00Race Series£36:00

You pick up your race pack on the evening from the sports hall of the school that lends it's grounds to this event and head out onto the playing field where the race village is set up. There are ample porta-loos, a huge inflatable slide for the kids, a couple of food stalls and music courtesy of Frimley Park Radio. I love milling around in the field before the race, checking out which clubs are represented and spotting familiar faces. It was a joy to see some of my old club, Farnham Runners, as well as some of the regulars at Frimley parkrun and two gentlemen I saw at Woodland 5 last week, including the chap who encouraged me after the final hill and Dennis, the oldest runner I know who seems to be at every race in the area. Before the start there was a good group warm up and the starting funnel was sectioned according to predicted finishing time which meant there wasn't too much congestion at the start.
Copyright Denis Chapman Photography
The course is the same every year, a 10k circular route around Yateley. I used to think it was a little hilly but aside from the incline at 9k which seems to go on forever, I've realised it's relatively flat with some lovely down hill sections.Water stations are at 5k and 8.5k with a sponge station at about 7k. The atmosphere is friendly and fun and plenty of locals, friends and family turn out on the course to cheer us on; it's a bit of an event. I ended up running the whole course with a chap I didn't know who picked me to pace him round in under the hour due to my "runners physique". Shame I don't have the speed to match! We chatted a bit and encouraged each other making this perhaps the most social race I've run. And yes we achieved his sub hour but I do wonder if we'd have managed a bit more without the conversation :)
The finish is really well organised. You don't get a goody bag as such but after you're funneled through to get your chip cut off,  you are handed a superb medal (which this year doubled as a bottle opener and is probably the best medal I've ever had), a bottle of water and a fun size chocolate (I chose a Dairy Milk). On arriving back at your car you will also find half a dozen leaflets under your windscreen wipers. On some occasions there have been spot prizes given out or £5 Sweatshop vouchers in the race pack but not this year. I recommend milling around at the end to socialise a bit, maybe grab a burger or a drink and take in the prize giving. If you can get to any of these next year I would urge you to do so.

I was only able to run the August event this year but have previous years times to compare with. My PB was actually set at my first one in August 2010 at 59:03 and although I was hoping to set a sub 58 this time around, it was not to be. Mildly disappointed given the amount of training I've been doing and how fit I feel these days but of course I've not been training for speed and there's always next year...


  1. OMG look at those abs.. I'm sorry but due to lack of abs or any kind of muscles I may have to abstain from visiting your amazing blog until I manage to raise my self esteem ;)


  2. Haha, aw hunny you are awesome! My stomach looked atrocious in one of the other shots... but as there aren't going to be many periods in life going forward when I'm happy to get my midriff out I'm damn well going to do so while I'm in decent shape ;)

  3. I've run the Yateley series races many times although not done one for the last 10 years or so! It was always my favourite 10km and I love the route. Your account brought it all back to me, thank you so much! Maybe next June...

  4. Hey Dan, thanks for visiting :) I didn't realise it had been around that long! I'll look out for you next year then and around and about when I'm out running, seeing as we're fairly local to each other. I'm looking forward to reading a bit more of your blog.