All I want for Christmas is for the running community to come together, and work in harmony, rather than bitch and moan about who might have copied whose race! and where people talk to each other face to face rather than from behind the keyboard!
Last weekend we held our Christmas Tree Challenge at Portchester Castle, an un-timed, 12 lap challenge. The field of 300 runners was made up from runners of all abilities, all ages and both club and non club runners.
At the same time, the Victory 5 was starting, just 2 miles away, and had a strong field of 900 runners.
When we published the details of our Christmas Tree Challenge, the HRRL fixtures were yet to be finalised. When they were, we saw that they were on the same day but didn’t bat an eyelid.
We at Rural Running have always held the belief that it will always be a case of ‘Peoples Choice’ and it is the people that will, and should be able to choose when, and where they race/run.
Inevitably there will be clashes, and the sensible thing to do, the adult thing to do, is to discuss perhaps making a compromise, if required, as has been the case during the past 3 years, and we have only been too happy to make changes.
We have had occasions where our races, the details of which have been published long in advance, have clashed with an event held by another local running company, but not once have we made an issue of it. We have always let the runners decide, and have even publicised the other event when our event fills up.
It has not escaped our notice that a number of local clubs appear to be boycotting our events, for whatever reason. Our races continue to fill up regardless, but sometimes it’s not about numbers. We miss you, we miss the sea of yellow that has in the past become a feature of our races, we miss the blue and white running vests, of which I was one, and proud to have been so. I also know that last week another local running club, whilst out on one of their club runs, had to listen to one of their experienced members going on about what ‘Jeff’ was doing, what ‘Rural Running’ were doing, and how bad ‘we’ were! Apart from anything else, in my opinion, the members of that club deserve better. I would prefer to listen to advice and guidance about running, fitness, nutrition and health, from an experienced, respected member of the club, rather than have to listen to a load of petty nonsense about someone else!
Whatever the reason for the boycott, it has never been our intention to offend, upset, or go head to head with person, or any club.
We have made some mistakes along the way, and some of them have been absolute howlers. We have always set out to give you the reasons, have always apologised, and have never shirked responsibility. We have always given reason, not excuses. We have never set out to organise races where people get lost, where people don’t apply their timing tag’s properly or where people feel they have been singled out as ‘different’ for any reason.
Our races are all inclusive and will always be, irrespective of race, religion, gender, colour, or sexuality! All inclusive means ‘ALL’ inclusive and that how it will always be.
We would like to extend a hand of welcome to those clubs and their members. We have some great events planned for 2019 and hope you will put the past in the past and come and join us.
Our events have been said to be ‘the friendliest races I have ever done’ by 100’s of our races, that’s not because of us, its because the runners!
We respect your choice, and hope to see you in 2019
In the meantime, have a great Christmas. Stay fit, stay healthy, and have a great 2019, wherever you might be running
Jeff & the Rural Running Family