On Sunday Yvette and I ran the Wokingham 10km which took place in Dinton Pastures country park. This was its second time of running and numbers had doubled to 400 entrants, running either 5km or 10km. It is organised by Barnes Fitness who also run the Dinton Pastures 5km and 10km series from May to August and the routes for both events are the same, once around the anti clockwise loop for the 5km and twice for the 10km. However, during the briefing Ellie, the race director, told us we would be running in the opposite direction with a slight diversion because of the mud. Even though I have run in the series in previous years I still find the geography of the park confusing and the changes had me completely baffled. However, I consoled myself in the fact that I would have plenty of runners ahead of me so there was no danger of getting lost!
After a brief warm up we set off and it certainly was muddy especially as there were a few very slow runners blocking the path and we had to overtake them on the grass which had been churned up and was therefore a bit slippery. We also had to navigate our way around a couple of walking groups by going off the path and onto the leaves at the side. It was a good thing we were wearing trail shoes as the ground did not improve despite the paths being gravelled as there were a lot of puddles which could not be avoided. In fact one marshal told us it was compulsory to run through the puddle at his spot! Great fun.
Dinton Pastures has an altitude gain of about 15 feet, is traffic free in super surroundings but I find it a real challenge and I don’t know why.
Despite that I am already signed up for the summer series, which starts on the second Thursday in May and then take place on Thursdays a week after each of the Yateley series.
If you want a small, friendly well organised 10km then the Wokingham one is a good one to do and all being well I shall go back next year.