Round Reading Ultra will go on the 'B' of the bang!
Round Reading 50K is all set to be the first post-lockdown race
Following last week's announcement by runbritain that licensed road and multi-terrain events can restart from tomorrow (Saturday 1 August) - subject to implementing a raft of COVID-19 control measures - a few intrepid race organisers have decided to go on the 'B' of the bang!
With a 7:00am starting slot for the first group of six runners on Saturday morning, Run Ultra Violet's Round Reading Ultra will surely be the first post-lockdown race to commence in the South of England.
Runners will start in small waves at two-minute intervals, spread out over two hours, to more than comply with social distancing requirements. The Berkshire County Sports Club, Sonning Lane, Reading will provide a spacious race venue and the 50K course includes flat river and canal towpaths, undulating woodland trails, country lanes and footpaths through Reading's many urban green areas.
Among the extra measures introduced to enhance safety are posted race packs; no start line pre-race briefing; minimum 2 metre spacing at the start; self-service feed stations; hand sanitiser available and all crew wearing masks and gloves.
Last year there were 130 finishers in 9:55:30, so with the staggered start arrangements this year many dedicated volunteers will be ensuring runners' safety for over 12 hours. The event organisers, Run Ultra Violet, are also responsible for Run to the Sea Ultra (Ringwood to Hengistbury Head) and Three Castles Ultra (Winchester, Windsor, Odiham).
The fastest runners to circumnavigate the Borough of Reading last year were local M40 master Colin Seymour (Fetch Everyone, 3:39:03) from Earley and W40 Susan McCartney (Belfast Association of Fellrunners, 4:11:00) from nearby Maidenhead (pictured above).
There are 300 starters listed, including three teams of two who run half the distance each in the new for 2020 relay option. The event is fully sold and there are no on the day entries permitted.
An idea of the route, which has been varied slightly to iron out a few pinch points, can be gained via this 60-second video
Race details at Round Reading Ultra website here
Image courtesy Kirsten Taylor/Run Ultra Violet