Stroud Beer Race 2019

Firstly, a little background on how I got roped into this one … I work opposite Stroud Brewery and a few of the brewery staff have started a running club on Thursdays which I sometimes tag along to.

Brewery running club usually consists of a 30-minute run, a quick beer and then I usually rush off to join the Thursday session at Cotswold Allrunners. The brewery sponsors Stroud beer race and so of course the running club were going to enter. During the long winter months, it seemed like a great idea, a lovely summer Monday evening run so I decided to join them and Anne-Marie from Cotswold Allrunners.

The evening came around and I rushed home from work, the clouds were looking ominous, surely it was going to rain. Race HQ was at the Old Lodge on Minchinhampton Common with runners allowed to use the pub facilities and no queue at all for the toilets.

Number collection was smooth which was down to the great organisation of Stroud Athletics and the small field of runners although I don’t think there was anywhere to put bags.

Anne-Marie and I met lots of lovely people at the start line, they’d travelled from Cirencester and other surrounding villages, mainly drawn in by the free beer. A quick run up and down the road and a change into my brewery top (sorry) meant we were ready for the 7pm start.

Everyone lined up on the road from the Lodge ready for the start and the marshals said a few words. Stroud beer race was the first race in the Stroud Athletic ‘Roger Briers Series,’ the series is dedicated to a member of the club who sadly passed away and Roger’s daughter was at the start line to start the race.

The race was 3 loops along open roads, you headed out from the Lodge and then turned left and a very pleasant down towards the Amberley Inn. Unfortunately, what goes down must come up and as you headed through ‘Pinfarthings’ the incline started back up to the common, I think I clocked 700ft elevation in total so not too bad for an Allrunner. The water station was well located in a break in the incline and the marshals were very friendly and supportive which was nice as there weren’t many out supporting.

I ran the race with a friend from the brewery and absolutely loved it, the rain held off and I was glad to finally be getting the miles back up after my marathon in May. Motorists were generally very sensible, the only obstruction we did come across was a passing group of cows, kudos to the marshals for dealing with them.

The race finished back at the Lodge and runners were given water, a medal and a token for a beer. I’ll admit I gave away my token as I didn’t want to be even more dehydrated, but the medal is lovely and interlocks with the other two in the series. I’m now signing up to the other two for sure. You can find out more by clicking Roger Brier Race Series.

Thank you to Sophie Berry, for a great race report.

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