Big races can be great – the atmosphere, thousands of runners and a great bag of bling at the end. They can also be a little overwhelming – toilet queues, masses of people and fairly costly to enter. There are lots of really great trails near and around Andover, Hampshire and as a result there are a few local races you might not have heard of.
If you are looking to try out a new running race this year that has a smaller, friendly, local feel then why not take a look at the list below?
The Hampshire Hoppit – 19th June 2016
A little outside of Andover, this race takes advantage of the Wayfarers Walk. It is a trail race and offers a Half Marathon and Marathon option. Every finisher gets a unique engraved beer glass and a classic ‘Hoppit’ ale. The event is hosted by Basingstoke and Mid Hants AC.
Race website: hampshiretrailmarathon.co.uk
Abbotts Ann 10k & 5k – 3rd July 2016
Back for its 6th year, this race starts at Abbotts Ann Sports Field, Bulbery, SP117BN. The event is hosted by Muddy Runners and is off-road, meaning a mixture of terrain with some small hills thrown in. Registration is via their website.
Race website: muddyrunners.org.uk
Twist 10k & 5k – 17th July 2016
Based a little north of Andover, this race takes place in the village of Kingsclere. There is a 5k and 10k option available.
Race website: www.racesonline.uk/events/twist-10k-and-5k
Andover Half & Marathon – 4th September 2016
A new race on the calendar, the first Andover Half and Full marathon takes place this autumn. All runners receive a medal and goody bag when they finish the series of challenge, but breathtaking route around the Test Valley. Information can be found on the Andover Trail Runners website.
Race website: andovertrailrunners.co.uk
Andover 10k Lake Run (& 3k Fun Run) – 18th September 2016
Another new race in the area. This event has been created to celebrate the 10th Anniversary of Andover foodbank and starts at Charlton Sports Centre (SP10 3LF) and finishes in front of Charlton Athletics Pavilion. A worthy cause and aimed at a mixture of abilities.
Race website: www.andover10klakerun.co.uk
Although they’ve already been and gone this year, there are a few more worth noting for 2017.
- Hurstbourne 5 – A challenging, 5 miles starting in Hurstbourne Tarrant and meeting the Test Way.
- Combe Gibbet to Overton – 16 miles across the beautiful countryside.
- Parkrun – technically not a race, but a good place to practice! The course is at Charlton Playing Fields.
Are there any Andover based races I’ve missed? If so, let me know and i’ll add them to the list!