Cheddar Gorge 23 Pixabay

Going Downhill Fast?

A race to relish in Cheddar Gorge

Is your running, like ours, going downhill fast? If so, runABC South has the perfect tonic to pep up your personal best. Say hello and welcome to the Cheddar Gorge Road Races including a 100% downhill 5K and a PB all but guaranteed!

Relish Running Races are behind this venture that features fully closed roads to allow you to soak up the incredible scenery of the Cheddar Gorge in all its natural beauty. And you won't have to be told to say "cheese" for your post-race photo as your smile will be as wide as the famous Gorge itself!

The date for your diary is Saturday 16 September 2023 and there are three race distances available. First away will be the Cheddar Gorge Half Marathon at 09:30am. This is not your express route to a PB as the course starts and finishes at the lower end of the Gorge, around 500m from the top of Cheddar village, with parking available in the public car parks. The half marathon is approximately 50% uphill; 50% downhill and not for the faint-hearted. However, it has to be one of the most scenic 13.1-mile races in the UK.

In contrast, the 10K and 5K competitors start from Warren Farm, Charterhouse (parking and glamping available) and will race mainly (10K) or completely (5K) downhill through the limestone gorge with its show caves where Britain's oldest complete human skeleton, Cheddar Man, estimated to be 9,000 years old, was discovered in 1903.

All races include the descent of the gorge with a maximum negative gradient of -17%. Cheddar Gorge Cliff Road B3135 drops almost 200m in 5K and the average downhill gradient is -4.2%. The near vertical cliffs beside the road are up to 450 feet high and this is England's largest gorge, attracting up to half a million visitors every year.

Entry fees range from £25 for the 5K to £40 for the half marathon and there is an optional shuttle bus back to the start for 5K and 10K runners at £5, or runners can reunite with their supporters in Cheddar village, where there are plenty of refuelling and rehydrating options available.

So lace up, line up, and light up that 5K PB!

Full details at Relish Running Races website here or at runABC South race listing here.

Image courtesy Ian Kelsall on Pixabay

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