1336Burnham Beeches Half Marathon

Burnham Beeches Half Marathon

Former Project 26.2 runner Ray continues his running journey with the Burnham Beeches Half Marathon

August 2012

Name: Ray Sievey aka The Jogging Hippo

Age: 37

Occupation: Business Analyst

Event: Burnham Beeches Half Marathon

Distance: 13.1

On the outskirts of Slough is a National Nature Reserve called Burnham Beeches which bizarrely is next to a place called Egypt?  The Burnham Joggers host the Burnham Beeches Half Marathon and this year was the 32nd running of the event.

The race starts in the grounds of Caldicott School.  Official parking is in a field that the official programme states you should allow 20 minutes to walk to the race start.  Usually, in my experience these timings are rather generous, but in this case the information is realistic.  So having my official supporters, my wife and my 2year old boy in tow, the walk took slightly longer which meant a bit of a rush for me at race HQ.  However, picking up my number, race chip and putting my bag into the official storage was seamless.

Just over 700 runners started the race at 10am with a lap of the school playing field and a short sharp climb up an embankment after 500 metres before getting out on the roads.  The route is a two-lap course that is on an almost traffic free course and also takes you through the woodlands of the Nature reserve, which fortunately for me and my fellow runners (running in almost 30 degree heat) meant that a lot of the route was in shade. The course is undulating and the inclines definitely feel steeper the second time round and this is probably not a PB course.  The Marshalls were excellent and there were 3 official water stations. I think that because of the weather an additional 4th water station appeared when we passed near the school at the end of the 1st lap.
The race is chip timed and I finished in 1:56:32.  Official results were online when I checked at 6pm in the evening. Facilities are good with plenty of changing (usual queue for toilets).  There was a small clothing store, food and drink on sale and a band playing.  Medal is very nice as well. Entry fees are £18.00 UKA affiliated, £20.00 unaffiliated. burnham-beeches-half-marathon

When I went to collect my bag, I hadn’t even got to the table and I could see the young lad walking towards me with my bag.  He had obviously clocked my number as I walked into the gymnasium and had already located my bag. Now that is what I call pro-active!

This is a very family friendly event.  There is plenty of space for kids to run around and there is a great adventure playground in the school grounds. Once the official race has started there is a 1m fun run for youngsters and/or partners.  The icing on the cake though is that there is a (free to
use) outside swimming pool that can be used by the runners and their family, which, giving the weather conditions, me and my boy took great delight in using once I had finished the race.

A very friendly and well organised event which I would certainly recommend. Running a race this weekend? We're looking for real readers' vox pops and race-day reviews and we want to hear from you! Click here for details.

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