Race 3 – 5 Miles
This 5 mile course not only offers some fine views across the golf course but will also tests your physical and mental strength with some challenging hills!
The course starts and finishes at the Outdoor Sports Centre and consists of 2 laps followed by a final uphill push to the finish.
The start is on the main path that runs between the between the Sporting View pub and the changing rooms. At the bottom of the hill there are some steps leading down to an area of grass and the stream. The start is on the main path, level with the railing of these steps.
The first half mile is fairly flat on the main tarmac path that runs through the middle of the Sports Centre, past our beloved athletics track and round beside the (somewhat creepy) play park to take you towards the golf course. As you leave the Sports Centre, you will tackle your first hill: a short incline onto the golf course. After passing the golf club house, take a sharp right turn to follow Golf Course Road, initially downhill, then for a long uphill effort.
At the top of the hill, you reach The Avenue. As you turn right onto The Avenue, you are in for a treat: a gentle downhill for a total of 1.2 miles. After approximately 0.4 miles into the downhill stretch, you will get to a big roundabout; turn right onto Winchester Road. After a further 0.5 miles, watch out for the pedestrian entrance to Thornhill Road on your right.
Turn right and follow Thornhill Road, which takes you back to the Sports Centre. Just keep on running straight until you pass the Sporting View pub (on your left) and get to the top of a steep hill drop. Be careful as you race down the hill (watch your knees and any pedestrians) and follow the main path – no short cuts here! You are now back at the start line.
A second lap follows…. You now know what is coming, so you can mentally prep for those hills! Make sure you make the most of the long downhill stretch to prep for the race finish…!
Race finish: After you completed the second lap (crossing the start line a second time), continue past the Sports Centre office and changing rooms. As you pass the football pitches on your right, take a left turn onto ‘Lamp Post Hill’. Yes, that’s right – the final 400 m will challenge you to a strong uphill sprint, taking you up past the BMX track to Coxford Road. This hill is your final effort and you will be rewarded with the finish line: the gate at the top of this hill. As you touch the gate (in your mind – don’t actually do it. COVID and that…), you have successfully completed Race 3!
Please be aware:
This route has been selected to try and avoid the crowds of people on the Common but please continue to be aware of those around you and respect other users of the Sports Centre.
The route is poorly lit in places – if running after dark, please use a light and take care with your footing as there are occasional speed bumps and potholes. There are some minor side roads to cross, please take care and do not risk your safety.
The route is as close to 5 miles as we can manage, however GPS is not 100% accurate and different devices will give slightly different distances. For the purpose of the league, start and finish your timer at the positions described above, this way everyone will run the same distance.