Blue Runnings

Race Reviews, GPX files and more from North-East England

Races Under a Tenner

Alex-the-Lion-PixTeller

It’s easy to get carried away with signing up to every race that dangles the promise of a medal and a banana under your nose when you’re running. For 2020 I’m attempting not to spend the same ridiculous amount of money on race entries as I did in 2019 – particularly as I didn’t manage to make it to half of them which stung doubly!

As part of my ‘Shoestring Challenge‘, I’ve set myself a limit of entering only races which are not more than £10 with an Athletics Association membership, and including travel should cost me no more than £15 – I can only go to races further than 18 miles from home if the race entry is proportionally under £10. I’m not likely to be earning many medals, but I’m looking forward to going to many new places!

Below is the list of all the races I have come across in the North-East to date. If I have completed them, either this year or previously, and written a race review this will be hyperlinked with the date, and the race entries where possible will be linked in the race title. Some event links may be to previous year’s – I will update when I find the 2020 information has gone live.

If a cost or date has a (?) after it, this is based on last year’s date/entry fee and will be updated when I find more information – if the price has gone over £10 for 2020, the entry will be deleted from this list.

All Year and FREE

parkrun – 5k – various locations – it wouldn’t really be a list of cheap events without this on here somewhere?! My locals are Blackhill and Gibside

Great Run Local – 5k – various locations – Gibside is the closest to me

Trust 10 – 10k – Cragside, Rothbury  and Ormesby Hall, Middlesbrough (other locations in the country but these are the only one currently in the North-East)

Run Together – various distances – local running groups across the country covering couch to 5k, social runs and training sessions

EXPLORING! There are a huge number of marked up local paths and routes, as well as the opportunity to find your own either by stealing other people’s from hiking sites, discovering your own from Ordnance Survey maps and similar, or just taking that random path you’ve always wondered where it heads off to.

January

8/1       Steel River – 5M – Middlesbrough – Stride Out Athletics – £10

12/1     South Shields Winter Trail Series – 5km – South Shields – RunEatSleep – £6 (on arrival)

26/1     Acklam Grange Trail – 5km – Middlesbrough – Muddy Roads – £5/£7

February

2/2       South Shields Winter Trail Series – 5km – South Shields – RunEatSleep – £6 (on arrival)

17/2     Run Newcastle Valentine’s – 5km – Newcastle – Run Nation – £10

18/2     Pie & Pea Trail – 5km – Trimdon Grange – Muddy Roads – £8/£10

23/2     Holme House Prison Trail – 5km – Stockton-on-Tees – Muddy Roads – £5/£7

March

1/3       South Shields Winter Trail Series – 5km – South Shields – RunEatSleep – £6 (on arrival)

1/3        Run Durham Dalton Park – 5km – Murton – Run Nation – £8

15/3     Brough Law – 8km – Powburn – Northumberland Fell Runners – £5 – 2020

21/3      Town Moor Cow Bell – 5km – Newcastle – Newcastle University – £5

22/3      South Shields Winter Trail Series – 5km – South Shields – RunEatSleep – £6 (on arrival)

22/3      Saltburn Trail – 5km – Saltburn – Muddy Roads – £5/£7

29/3      Temple Park – 5km – South Shields – RunEatSleep – £7.50

April

22/4     Neptune Relays – 1.7M 4 person relay event – Sedgefield – Sedgefield Harriers – £10ea

22/4     Pine Forest Trail – 5km – Middlesbrough – Muddy Roads – £5/£7

26/4     Terry O’Gara Memorial – 5km – Wallsend – Wallsend Harriers – £9(?) if booked before 31/1

30/4     Cockfield Chase – 7km – Bishop Auckland – Durham Fell Runners – £5

May

9/5       Raby Races – 5km – Raby Castle – Teesdale AC – £10

13/5     Saltburn Trail – 5km – Saltburn – Muddy Roads – £5/£7

23/5     Allendale Fair – 7.5M – Allendale – Allen Valley Striders – £7 pre-booked, £8 on the day

June

2/6        Bolts Law Basher Run – 7M – Weardale – Derwentside Athletics Club – Free

21/6      Windy Gyle – 8.5M – Alwinton – Northumberland Fell Runners – £5

24/6      Pinchinthorpe Trail – 5km – Guisborough – Muddy Roads – £5/£7

28/6      High Force Trail Race – 18km – Forest-In-Teesdale – Durham Fell Runners – £5

28/6      FACT North East Cancer Run – 5km/10km – Swalwell – FACT – £10 for either distance

July (seriously, how many things to do are there in July?!)

5/7        The Cross Fell Race – 24km – Garrigill – Garrigill Community – £8

5/7        Bottom’s Up Cup – 5km – Washington – Washington Running Club – £9/£11 – 2015, 2016

7/7        Saltwell Harriers – 9km – Stanhope – Saltwell Harriers – £5

9/7        Beacon Hill – 6M – Rothbury – £5

12/7        Red Kite Trail Race – 8M – Dipton – Derwent Valley Trail Runners – £8/£10 – SOLD OUT

14/7      Chapelfell Top – 7km – Bishop Auckland – Durham Fell Runners – £5

15/7      Lordstones Trail – 5km – Stokesley – Muddy Roads – £5/£7

21/7      Cock Crow – 5km – Hebburn – Jarrow & Hebburn AC – £10

26/7      Temple Memorial Park – 5km – South Shields – RunEatSleep – £7.50

(?)        Castle Eden White Wolf Run – 5km – Peterlee – Run Peterlee – £8(?)

(?)        Willow Miners Trail – 5.3M – Durham – Elvet Striders – £7(?) – 2019

August

19/8     Trimdon Loop Night Trail – 5km – Trimdon Grange – Muddy Roads – £5/£7

29/8     Bellingham Show – 4M – Bellingham – Bellingham Show – £8

September

19/9      Simonside – 11km – Coquetdale – Northumberland Fell Runners – £2 + show entry = £5.50

23/9      Newham Grange Trail – 5km – Coulby Newham – Muddy Runners – £5/£7

October

25/10    Run Northumberland Hexham – 5km – Hexham – Run Nation – £10

25/10    N S Poly Ingram Hills – 9.5km – Ingram – North Shields Poly – £6

(?)        North-East Harrier League starts – various dates and locations throughout the North-East – £2-3 for the whole season – running club members only

November

 

December

6/12      Angus Tait Hexhamshire Hobble – 17km – Allendale – Allen Valley Striders – £8 pre-booked, £9 on the day

13/12    Simonside Cairns – 11M – Rothbury – £8

26/12(?)  Woodlawn Boxing Day Pudding Run – 5km – Whitley Bay – North Shields Poly – £8(?)

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The Shoestring Challenge

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November 2019 – I’ve no further races booked in for the year as I’m not doing cross-country this time around. I’ve spent a lot of the last few weeks analysing my spending for much of the year while we get quotes in for a house extension and I try to work out where we’re going to afford it from. It’s time for the cost of my race entries for 2019 to come under scrutiny – something I normally avoid looking at too closely! As many of my races are booked months in advance, it’s easy to forget how much I’m spending sometimes.

I’ve entered 21 races this year ranging from 1 mile (Liverpool Rock ‘n’ Roll) to 14 miles (Trail Outlaws RAF Spadeadam Half). I’ve spent a whopping £454.50 on race entries – average cost per race £21.64. Not including getting to and from them, and in two cases accomodation. To make matters worse, due to injury I haven’t been able to make a lot of the longer or hillier ones. I’ve countered this by booking more shorter ones that were on at similar times. I haven’t been able to defer, transfer entries or get refunds for any I’ve missed. £251 of those races I didn’t even get to which makes the average cost of the events I did get to a massive £41.31- a lot for a 10k. I’m not willing to do this again for 2020.

I’ve set myself a limit of £10 maximum per race entry if I’m wanting to go to races. Race + travel shouldn’t come to more than £15. Generally, £5 will take me a return trip to a race 18 miles from home. I can travel further if the race entry is less than £10.

I’ll be doing a lot of free events like parkrun and Great Run Local, I’m wanting to explore several of the local longer walking routes like the Tyne & Wear Heritage Way in sections, I can marshall events to gain ‘credits’ I can use for others, and I can support my local running clubs at their club-organised races – as long as they’re under £10!

Already, just in looking for races under £10, I’ve come across several particularly trail races I’ve not seen before so I’m really looking forward to trying some new ones I’ve not done! We are so, so lucky in the North-East with the huge amount of organised events right on our doorstep if that’s what keeps your trainers heading out the door.

I’m also going to be keeping a look-out for interesting non-race events like the recently hosted Dusk Run at Wallington Hall which I really enjoyed, and I’ve also run with Anna McNuff this year and 401’s Ben Smith previously. I’ll share them as I come across them on my Facebook page if anyone wants to join 🙂 I’ll likely also be doing a lot of local exploring on my own. I’ve been stalking hiking sites looking for loop routes which I’ve been able to download to my GPS, even if I haven’t figured out how to get them to show on it yet! It’s good to learn new things right?!

I’m going to be over-hauling my website over the next few days to make it easy to find the ‘races for the frugal’ available which I’ve found so far, I may also do something with local loop and ‘official’ walking routes I’ve found, and I’m looking forward to trying some new things over the next 12 months – hopefully for rather less dosh!

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