The Green Belt Relay – 13th & 14th May 2023 – SIGN UP NOW!

The Green Belt Relay is an annual multi-stage running relay, taking place each May, of around 220 miles (350km) of the Green Belt around the outside of London over a single weekend. It is organised by a fellow running club (Stragglers RC) and surplus funds from the race are donated to charity. The race has been going since 1995 and involves around 50 teams. Serpentine has been one of the most successful clubs over the year, having won the overall and women’s events over 20 times as well as more than 200 individual stages. More details are available on the Green Belt Relay website.

The route is divided into 22 stages, between 6.0 and 13.3 miles, and each team consists of 11 runners, with each runner running twice, once on each day of the race. Each runner should expect to run around 20 miles in total across the weekend at 10 min/mile pace or faster (6:12 min/km) – this is to make sure we have a smooth operation logistically.

Our Stage 7 finishers in 2022

 

This sounds tough as you are racing two days in a row, but it’s also great fun and a rewarding experience, as anyone who has taken part previously can attest to. Everyone is welcome, elites and newcomers alike, to experience the camaraderie of the weekend and experiencing the wonderful, scenic running we have so close to London. It’s also a great opportunity for newer Serpentine members to get involved with the club and meet other Serpies.

Although the race is a relay, each stage starts at a fixed time. This allows each stage to be a competitive race in its own right, and also allows teams of all different standards to stay roughly together as they advance along the route.

 

The 2022 Serpie GBR team

Entry

We will enter three teams: men, women, vets and/or mixed, covering all standards. Our plan is to once again have at least 1 team that is competitive at the sharp end of the race. However, the format of the race offers opportunities for everyone taking part to challenge themselves – be it stage wins (and a fancy yellow t-shirt like Sophie in the above picture), age category places or just by getting out and racing on some great trails around London.

We do have some priority places for those who can help over the weekend by providing support such as minibus driving, first aid, map reading, physio etc. Let us know what you can do for the team if you’d like to help out.

Once the limit of 33 runners is reached, we will have a waiting list in case we get enough interest to enter a fourth team but also to have some backup runners for the inevitable dropouts due to injuries etc. So it would be great if you could still keep the weekend open if you’re keen to run but missed out on the initial places.

Runners stay with the group the entire weekend, staying in a hotel on the Saturday night near the mid-point of the race. This facilitates the organising of the runners for each stage, giving the team as a whole more flexibility, and avoids runners having to head back into London to come back out again early the next morning. Most importantly though, it creates a great team atmosphere. 

Travel to the start of the event is by minibus from several locations, usually from the Seymour Centre, Victoria, Clapham Junction, and Hammersmith.

 

2023 Costs

Each participant will pay £72 at the time of signing up. This covers team entry fees, transport costs (i.e. van/minibus hire, insurance, fuel and parking costs), and other items such as our water and cup contribution for the race, and the printing of essential information such as the course maps.

The club also subsidises some of the costs. If you are a van/minibus driver, the Club will also refund half of the entry fee (£36) as a thank you for helping the team.

In addition, the hotel on the Saturday night is paid by each runner directly to the hotel on the day. The price for 2023 is £45 per person, which includes breakfast. Unlike in recent years, we will not be having dinner at the hotel and plan to book a space in a nearby restaurant instead where we can go as a group, however you are free to make your own plans.

As we all like a bit of swag, it’s worth noting the fee includes a good quality dry-fit Green Belt Relay T-shirt provided by the event organisers.

If you have any additional questions contact your Serpie GBR team

 

Serpie team organisers – Frank, Soph Flanagan & Hans

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