Whilst it was perhaps the wettest race I have ever taken part in, it was also, by far, the most joy-filled: I enjoyed every second and hope that it becomes a regular fixture on the race calendar.
Running Festival Goodwood is an event I’ve been looking forward to ever since I heard of the concept; a number of races (family mile, 10k and Half Marathon) around the historic Goodwood Motor Circuit. Since 1948, cars have zipped around the seven turns that this track offers, enjoying the almost non-existent inclines and stunning vistas of the West Sussex countryside: today was the turn of the athletes who had traveled from all over the country to take part.
The course was run completely on the track, around the circuit, starting with a kilometre or so walk to the start line. It was then two and a bit with an incredibly fast, wide and flat surface. There were a number of pacers (including myself at 1:15) and not a hint of congestion at a track that’s famous for its overtaking!
The conditions were wet and windy which made for a wild race, but there was awesome support from the paddock as we ran past as well as the marshalls out on course. Water was on hand around halfway through, though plenty of it was falling from the sky as well. There was a large contingent from Run Mummy Run who had hundreds of runners taking part, many seemed to be doing their first 10km which was awesome to witness. The fact that this was such a PB potential course for some of the fastest, most-seasoned athletes and those who were there to get around for the first time was a testament to the hard work of all the team involved in organising the event.
Facilities wise there was ample parking, a secured baggage drop, lots of toilets without much waiting, food/drink outlets and the ‘Pop-up-pit-shops’ with brands like Ron Hill, Hilly, Altra and Runr on show.
The finish line bling was excellent: a wonderfully designed and themed motorsport medal; a high-quality Running Festival Ron Hill technical t-shirt; jelly beans, crisps and chocolate bar food bits; and some protein balls (very tasty)! A lot of swag for a seriously well-priced race at an incredibly prestigious venue.
Overall? Whilst it was perhaps the wettest race I have ever taken part in, it was also, by far, the most joy-filled: I enjoyed every second and hope that it becomes a regular fixture on the race calendar. I can’t recommend it enough.
Personal running stats
Time – 1:14:55 as the 1:15 pacer
PBs – my first time as a pacer with a flag!
Report – I loved being a pacer for UKRunEvents – the other pacers were a great laugh, the kit provided by Ron Hill, Hilly and Altra was superb (it’s going to be hard to run in other stuff!) and it was such a phenomenal event. Side note: I never thought running into the wind with a pacer flag would be so difficult!