I’ve been a bit (very) slack with blogs posts recently, this one is a little late in reviewing but I can still remember most of it! Longleat 10k took place on the 7th February 2016, the race started earlier than originally planned due to the Chinese New Year celebrations taking place in the park.
If you haven’t got time to read the entire thing, here is my summary.
A challenging but beautiful 10k . The course consists of 3 loops in total with a couple of killer hills thrown in to get the legs burning. The medal is awesome (a lion’s head) and the goody bag was fairly decent for the price (around £17). The downside was the organisation; the traffic into the venue was terrible and so we started the race late, there were no extra toilets for the 1000+ runners (only the 8 in the block by the house) and slower runners complained of having to avoid traffic, not getting medals and only having fizzy water at the end. A great course to try and it seems that 2:09 events have taken onboard the comments from this year.
This was my first entry to this race and I was looking forward to it as the estate is beautiful and finishing on a down hill, towards the house seemed like a lovely way to end a race. However, on our way in we got stuck in a huge traffic queue, along with hundreds of other runners. We’re not sure why this happened, they’ve run this race before so should have been prepared.
It was a mad dash to park, use the loos and get to the start line.
The race started late (probably due to all the cars still trying to get in) and we ended up joining the start after it had started. No time for a warm up or composition! It was a running start and straight onto the first hill.
The course consists of 3 loops and starts up a hill! There was a massive amount of runners here, so it was really difficult to get past people or get into a rhythm but with plenty of energy on the first lap, it was manageable. This also doubles up as the final loop – so I knew what to expect later on.
Most of course is on private, traffic free roads, apart from a small section after the first hill in the first lap. There is a pub (Bath Arms) where the course turns and soon heads back into the estate.
The second loop also has a hill, but this is more of a steady climb. At this point, you’re back near the main attractions in the park. The water stop was at around 4km – just before the second loop hill climb – this seemed a bit early for water and I’m sure most people would have appreciated it at the top of the hill.
It wasn’t long before we were back on the final loop.
The steep hill seemed much harder the second time!
I was suffering from a stitch so took a breather in a hope to get rid of it, especially knowing the finish was downhill and I wanted to enjoy it.
The mood was a little different by the third lap – most people were quiet and gritting their teeth to make it to the top of the hill again. There was a little bit of traffic this time, I’m assuming this was local/access traffic, which meant you needed a bit more awareness of what was going on. As soon as I saw the peak of the hill, I knew that was it – time to let go and push the final part.
As you’re coming down the hill you can see the house, but the finish felt like it was taking forever!
I keep pushing, trying to ignore my stitch and trying to go as fast as my little legs would take me. According to my Garmin, I made it in 57 minutes. my splits were not too bad (if you ignore the start and hills!). A good race to go back to and try again.
Did you race Longleat 10k this year? How did you find it?