Race Information

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Our 2019 race will be chip timed. Your race number, timing chip and baggage label will be available for collection from Race HQ from 8am onwards. Please allow plenty of time for collection. After receiving your race number, please complete the medical declaration on the back – this is for your benefit as well as ours IF YOU DECLARE ANY MEDICAL CONDITION PLEASE ENSURE THAT YOU NOTIFY OUR INFORMATION DESK LOCATED IN THE VENUE.

Race numbers will be listed on our website approximately a week before the race.

The race starts and finishes at Halstead Leisure Centre, Colne Road, Halstead, Essex CO9 2HR which will act as Race HQ. There will be refreshments, showers, toilets, masseurs, changing and baggage storage facilities, all accessed from the rear of the complex beyond the Start/Finish line. Halstead Leisure Centre provides many other sports facilities including a 25m swimming pool; for further information call 01787 472480.

Doors open at 8am. Please arrive no later than 9.30am to allow time for parking, collection of your entry pack and storage of baggage. The Start and Finish is adjacent to Race HQ.

If you wish to leave your baggage at Race HQ please mark the label clearly with your race number and attach it securely to your baggage. There will be directions to the secure storage facility from the Main Hall. Please leave plenty of time to drop off any baggage as there are likely to be queues. Baggage is stored at your own risk.

The race is mainly through quiet and picturesque country lanes, undulating with small valleys. Many runners state this is the most beautiful marathon course they have ever run. There’s an ‘out-run’ from Halstead through Pebmarsh into the lanes of the Essex/Suffolk border, where the route enters a 10 ½ mile loop, most of which is run twice, in 2015 this route has changed so please be aware. After completing most of the second lap there’s a different mile-long ‘in-run’ back to Race HQ.  The route is almost all on secondary roads but there is a short section of grass (400m) in the final mile. If you should feel that you’re unable to complete the course you should report to the nearest marshal who will arrange transport for you back to the finish. If you don’t complete the course you must not cross the Finish Line and are asked to report to the officials at the Finish Line and state you didn’t complete the race.

There are mile markers throughout. 6 water stations serve runners 10 times. Similarly, 2 sponge stations serve runners 4 times.  We also provide the facility for you to have your own drinks delivered to the water stations. You should clearly label your own drink(s) with your running number and place them in the containers (numbered 1 to 6) at Race HQ. Should this facility be of interest, we strongly recommend that you arrive early. For logistical reasons we cannot commit to delivering an unlimited number of drinks, so when the crates are full the service will be suspended. Runners’ drinks will be delivered to the course at 9.15am. We ask you to be fair to each other and bring no more than 3 drinks each (since any more is unnecessary given the provision of water). You may also attach 1 gel to your drink(s) securely with sticky tape. Please deposit rubbish at a water station or drop it close to a sign to help us keep our countryside beautiful.

The course is marshalled throughout, with experienced runners at key locations. In addition, the course is very well sign posted so that runners continuing after marshals have withdrawn will be able to follow the route. Whilst we don’t have a time limit on the race, we reserve the right to begin to withdraw marshals after 5 hours. We have adopted this policy due to the long day for all our volunteers, First Aid and Race HQ staff. Water stations and signage will remain in place until the last runner and tail bike have completed the course.

Dogs and wheeled carriages, other than wheelchairs, are banned from the course. Runners must not be accompanied, or followed, by others on cycles. Unfortunately, the course is not suitable for wheelchair athletes.

Race Licence Number issued by England Athletics 2018/30053.

Course Accuracy certificate issued by www.coursemeasurement.org.uk 15/026

For those with Sat-Nav you are aiming for:-   Halstead Leisure Centre, Colne Road, Halstead, Essex CO9 2HR Tel. 01787 472480

For those who don’t, here’s some detailing directions of how to get there by car.

From London and the West – Halstead is just over half an hour’s driving from the M11 junction of the M25 (junction 27). Take the M11 north to Junction 8 (Stansted Airport and Birchhanger Services). From Junction 8 of the M11 take the A120 East shown ‘Stansted Airport and A120 Colchester’ to the Braintree Bypass and follow signs ‘A131 Sudbury’ . Go right round the bypass to the A131 for the last five miles to Halstead. When you arrive at Halstead, go straight through the town, up the hill, straight over the two mini roundabouts continuing in the direction of Sudbury. After about 400 yards, you will need to turn right into Colne Road (with its speed bumps) This turn will be signed and marshalled at the busy period before the start. Race HQ is ~ 400 yards on your left and parking just passed that on your right (marshalled).

From the North and Midlands – Take the A1 & M14 to join the M11 near Cambridge then south to Junction 8. See above for directions from the M11.

From the Southeast – Leave the M25 at Brentwood (junction 28) and take the A12 northeast, passing Chelmsford. Turn off at Witham and follow signs for Braintree (B1018). On the approach to Braintree you will pick up the A120 / Braintree by-pass; follow signs for Halstead (A131). See above for directions from the A120.

From the A1124 Junction with the A12 – continue along the A1124 for the last 9 miles to Halstead. The A12 is a boring dual carriageway almost up to motorway specifications in places; which makes the A1124 a pleasant experience for those not in a hurry. A designated scenic route, it winds through the Colne Valley passing down the half-timbered main streets of Ford Street, Chappel (with spectacular viaduct over the valley), White Colne, Wakes Colne and Earls Colne until, just as you enter Halstead after passing the small industrial estate, you take Colne Road on your right. The junction will be signed and also marshalled at the busy period before the start. You will soon arrive at the race headquarters and be directed to the adjacent car park.

From East Anglia – Travel south down the A12 driving round the Colchester bypass until you reach the A1124 Junction. See above for directions from the A12.

From Harwich Car Ferry (28 Miles) – Take the A120 to Colchester and drive round the bypass to the A1124 Junction. See above for directions from the A12.

From Felixstowe Car Ferry (37 miles) – Take the A14 to A12 junction. Travel south (London and Colchester) and drive round the Colchester bypass to the A1124 Junction. See above for directions from the A12.

From Stansted Airport See above for directions from the M11.

Please don’t park in the adjacent streets but follow the marshals’ directions to the car park which is less than a 1 minute walk from Race HQ. There’s no parking at Race HQ as this is reserved for emergency services and patrons of the Leisure Centre. We regret that the organisers can take no responsibility for any loss or damage to vehicles or their contents. We encourage you to lift share where possible to minimise the impact on the environment.

Full details of local accommodation can be obtained from the Tourist Office in Braintree. Call 01376 550066 or visit www.enjoybraintreedistrict.co.uk for more information. General information can also be found on our website.

There are six water stations (simply numbered 1 to 6) of which five are visited twice. We also provide the facility to deliver runners own drinks to the water stations:

  • Runners should clearly label/mark their own drinks with their running number before they arrive on race day and place them in the crates (numbered 1 to 6) at Race HQ.
  • For obvious logistical reasons we cannot commit to delivering an unlimited number of drinks so when the crates are full the service is suspended.
  • Runners drinks will be delivered to the course at 9:15.
  • We strongly advise runners to arrive early should they wish to take up this facility (Race HQ opens at 8am and we politely ask people not to arrive any sooner).
  • We also ask runners to be fair to their fellow competitors and bring no more than three drinks (any more is unnecessary given the provision of water).
  • Runners may also attach one gel to each drink (securely with selotape, not an elastic band) if so desired.

Following repeated concerns from both runners and marshals about the inappropriate use of personal audio equipment (i.e. at a volume level that doesn’t allow the listener to be aware of traffic and able to hear marshals’ instructions), the use of such items has now been banned from our race (including bone conduction headphones).

These are under the supervision of our Medical Director. Essex Medics are based at Race HQ. They’ll be patrolling the course, and an ambulance is on standby throughout the race. You’re reminded that you should ensure that you’re in good health on the day of the race. Please be aware that you compete at your own risk. We provide Level 2 cover as defined by UK Athletics. Please don’t forget to complete the medical declaration on the back of your running number – this is for your benefit as well as ours.

The Information Desk is in the Main Hall at the Leisure Centre (please follow the signs around the side of the building to the rear entrance) and is manned by our Communications Coordinator during the race. We’re in communication with all officials including the Course Director, First Aid, water stations and most of the course marshals. In addition we’ll have a room available in the unlikely event of an emergency.

With our Race HQ at Halstead Leisure Centre there are many facilities available and lots of space for spectators. Why not bring a deck chair and
settle-in at the finish line. Maps of the course for spectators will be available at the Information Desk. Please ask your friends and family to park responsibly out on course, not all road users are as considerate to runners as you may think.
There are a number of particularly convenient places to watch the race. If you have a car, Levit’s Corner is interesting as the runners pass this area three times. Parking is towards Pebmarsh in the Football Club (follow the signs) – please do not park at the side of the road.

UKA affiliated runners who were born in, or have been resident in Essex for 9 months or more are eligible for this championship. The Essex County Amateur Athletic Association Road Race Secretary’s decision as to eligibility is final. Entry on the day is not possible. The closing date to be included in the championship is 30th April 2019. Awards are made to 1st, 2nd and 3rd place finishers (both male and female) and first 3 finishing teams (both male and female). Also the following age category awards: Male – senior, over 40, 50, 60 and 70.  Female – senior, over 35, 45, 55 and 65.

The 262 Mile Club is an exclusive club for those who have completed the race 10 times or more. Members get to choose a number for life. Membership of the 262 Mile Club is by application only. If you believe that you qualify, please contact our Entries Secretary on [email protected]

The Race Director’s decision as to the distribution of trophies is final. There will be 2 presentations starting at approximately 2.15pm: the Halstead & Essex Marathon and the Essex County Championships. The Halstead & Essex Marathon itself has a “one person, one trophy” policy. Therefore 1st, 2nd and 3rd places receive place trophies and thereafter other runners receive age category prizes. The trophies are:

  • Male 1st to 3rd place and 1st over 40, 45, 50, 55, 60, 65, 70
  • Female 1st to 3rd place and 1st over 35, 40, 45, 50, 55
  • 1st Male and Female Teams (Please note that a team comprises of the 1st 3 finishing runners from a club).
  • The Sports Council Trophy which is given to the 1st finishing runner resident in the Braintree District Council area.
  • The Colin Richer Trophy which is given to the 1st finishing runner of the Halstead Road Runners.

All trophies must be collected on the day, unless £10 is left with the Race Director to cover postage and packaging.

If either the 1st male or female runners beat the respective course records they will be awarded a prize of £200. The women’s record is 3:00:44 (Jackie Stretton – Springfield Striders RC – 2018). The men’s record is 2:34:56 (Tristan Steed – Non-Affiliated – 2017).

In 2017 over £5,500 from our race was donated to worthy causes, including: St Helena Hospice, Farleigh Hospice, Ramsey College, TAPS, Halstead Day Centre, Halstead in Bloom and The Tabor Centre. We aim to continue this in 2018 and hope that you’ll feel able to participate in supporting these worthwhile causes. There’s no minimum donation, every little helps. Donations will be accepted at the Information Desk.

Our official race photographers (Hillman Photography – www.hillman.online) will be out on the course throughout the day. Prints and Digitals will be available to buy from them direct (link will be made available via our website and Facebook page). A selection of photographs may also appear on our website and Facebook pages. Pictures from the day may be circulated to the local media along with our race report/results.

Provisional results will be displayed at Race HQ as soon as they’re available, and updated regularly. Provisional results will be posted on our website asap after the event. If you require a set of results to be posted please leave a stamped addressed envelope and £1 at the Information Desk.

Please note that no refunds or rollovers to 2020 will be allowed under any circumstances in the case of withdrawal from the race or non-appearance on race day. Your entry fee will be added to the monies that Halstead Road Runners donates to charity.

If you are unable to run and would like to transfer your place to another runner please email [email protected]. There will be a £10 charge for this service and it is only possible if you have NOT entered the Essex Championships. The transfer window will close 30th April 2019. Please provide the Full Name, Club, Athletics Number, Date of Birth, Gender, Full Address and Contact Number of the person you would like your place transferred too.

By participating in our race you declare that you are over the minimum age (18) for this event and you accept that the organisers and sponsors will not be liable for any loss, damage, action claim, cost or expenses which may arise in consequence of your participation in the event. You declare that you will ensure that you are in good health on the day of the race and, that in any event, you will compete at your own risk. You declare that you will abide by the UK Athletics Rules of Competition. Finally, you agree that our photographers may capture your image and that this image will appear on the photographers website (www.hillman.online), may appear on our own website (www.halsteadroadrunners.org.uk) and publicity in other media outlets along with our race report/results.

We hope you enjoy our marathon – please tell us what you thought via www.runnersworld.co.uk or on our own website at www.halsteadroadrunners.org.uk