Sunday 6 March sees the 39th running of the Berkhamsted Rotary Half Marathon and 5 Mile Fun Run. Postponed from last year owing to Covid, this promises to be a great opportunity to re-establish outdoor racing in a safe and well-organised event.
A scenic run among the Chilterns, the Berkhamsted Half Marathon course, officially recognised by the UK Athletics Association, is arguably one of the most attractive in England. It starts and ends at the town’s cricket club, adjacent to the imposing ruins of the old Norman castle. It takes in the villages of Potten End, Nettleden, Little Gaddesden and the grand facades of Ashridge House as it runs through the Estate on the way back to Berkhamsted.
The 5-mile Fun Run is a good challenge for those not quite ready for a Half Marathon and is similarly scenic as it follows a route through farmland and wooded countryside up to Potten End and continues past Berkhamsted Golf Club before a welcome descent to finish at Berkhamsted Cricket Club.
There are some valuable prizes on offer with a cup and £100 going to the male and female winners of the Half Marathon and prizes for winners of various age groups. There is a team cup too. All the Half Marathon runners get a free technical T-shirt and all runners get a bespoke medal. Fun Run winners get £50 vouchers to Berkhamsted Sports with runner up prizes too. There is a Schools Challenge worth £250 to the schools of the winning teams who gain the highest four places.
Men’s Half Marathon Winner in 2020 was Alex Milne of Hercules Wimbledon AC with a time of 1:09:108 and the Women’s winner was Jess Gray of Dacorum & Tring AC in 1:29:34.
Gade Valley Harriers won both the Women’s and Men’s Team Shields, have you got a team to challenge them?
Men’s Fun Run Winner was Sha Janally of the City of Stoke AC with a time of 0:27:15, Women’s winner was Katie Ferguson of Leighton Buzzard AC in 0:34:16.
Fastest Junior girl was Jemima Byers of Dacorum and Tring AC in 0:35:39 and the boy’s winner was Leon Doran in 0:32:36 although Oscar Loveday had a faster time of 0:29:54 but was awarded 3rd prize in the whole Fun Run race.
Berkhamsted School won the Boys Challenge prize and Ashlyns the Girls School Challenge.
London Northwest Railway generously waives parking fees at Berkhamsted station, close to the start and finish of the race. Thanks also to the sponsors who generously support this race: Williams & Yates, Taylor Wimpey, Haines Watts, Machins, OSD Healthcare, Everyone Active and Gade Valley Harriers.
If you would like to enter for either the Half Marathon or Fun Run please go to www.berkorotary.org.