My 2nd time running at this popular event in Middlesbrough along with another 2,637 people!
After the 2016 event started off with typical North East damp and drizzly conditions, the early signs were that 2017 Tees Pride could head the same way. Despite the menacing cloud cover, the sun broke through just in time for the start of the race.
The event itself is a 1 lap course taking in the Acklam area of Middlesbrough. Parking is a bit of a lottery here as the roads shut at 8.30am, making it difficult to get into one of the three designated car parks unless you make an early start. The option most take is attempting to find some on street parking just away from the closed road route. This means a 10 minute walk to the athletes village, but this hasn’t been a major problem for me in the 2 years I’ve taken part.
The athlete’s village really is very good. A good selection of decent quality food outlets, 3 large bouncy castles for the kids, various sponsors stalls, baggage tent, goody bag area, ample portaloos and a huge grassed area to meet up with fellow club members or friends.
The start is adjacent to the athletes village so it’s easy to get into the starting pen 10 minutes before the start, which is well signed at 5 minute increments to direct you to where you should be stood based on predicted finishing time.It is also understandably a little congested with 2,500 people jostling for position, but good practice for those running the Great North Run the following week!
Once out on the open roads there are a few undulations but nothing major. My GPS reported total elevation of 28m. You can’t go wrong on this course, plenty of marshalls, cones and people lining the streets.
It was a touch gusty on certain parts of the course and temperatures of around 16C made it tough going towards the latter few Km’s but water stations were well placed just after 5Km and around 8Km. Bottled water instead of silly plastic cups too! I just wish running events organised smaller 250ml bottles for their events as so much gets wasted!
One tip when in the finishing straight… It’s a lot longer than you think!
Good value for money event with a T-Shirt and a medal in the finishing pack. Excellent colour this year too!