Farleigh Wallop 10K is organised by Hatch Warren Runners, limited to 250 runners where no members of the club are allowed to run. This does of course have the benefit of plenty of marshalls and helpers. It takes place on private land in Farleigh Wallop with the kind permission of the Portsmouth Estates
The weather was ghastly and waterproofs were required, some hardy souls did go without. The numbers were issued on the day by giving confirmation of name in the right section of alphabet along with a corresponding luggage tag for bag drop. The barn was very busy and a bit of a scrum to get to bag drop. A welcome address from the organiser to thank everyone for turning up in such horrid weather, thanking all the volunteers and then she took the opportunity to announce her retirement of the event, but as they say ‘the show must go on’.
The time came to stand outside to start the run, they didn’t keep us waiting for long which was a good idea as it was chucking it down and getting cold. The first part of the run is up hill and quite rocky so our small group decided to take things easy, the path levels out to run single file then onto a road. Lots of smiley marshalls encouraging us on. The course is undulating and very slippy under foot, but that’s trail for you. We all agreed we had put the correct trainers on and tackled the route with vigour. One path gave us the opportunity to practice running in puddles, great laugh and totally recommended, who needs dry feet anyway!!
Before the run Melvyn mentioned the ploughed field which I seemed to have blanked from last year; but when looking at it the memories came flooding back, although last year it was dry! A lovely hill where your shoes got caked in mud making progress slippy and slow. At the top was the most enthusiastic marshal I have come across, her ability to shake a cow bell whilst yelling encouragement was priceless, we nominated her the best marshal. Having mud caked shoes did not help on the next bit of the course where a few slips were made but thankfully no tumbles. I mentioned to Tracy Rees-Clarke, last year we did aeroplanes going down the hill, well once done it has to be done again! The marshal at the bottom looked a bit concerned I was going to fall over and get injured, too late already bought the injury to the party. The last bit of the course is on road and a slow slog up hill, turning the corner the wind blew us away and we were pleased to see the finish line. Presented with our medals we didn’t hang around and got into the barn to have tea and cake, for a small donation.
This is definitely one of my favourite runs, the views on a clear day are amazing. Sadly it was not to be this year but all the same a lovely trail run.
Run review by Karen Jones