Almost Athletes Handicap Race Series


This popular event is back now!


What is it?

The Almost Athletes Handicap Championship is back for another year!   It’s a series of 4 road races over 3 laps totaling 4.5 miles at 7pm from Old Pats on four Monday evenings:

The first two races took place on 13th May and 3rd June.

The remaining two races will be on 24th June  and  15th July.

For the overall standing after two races, click  Here

For detailed Race 1 Results, click   Race One Results

For detailed Race 2 Results, click  Race Two Results

If you wish to take part, please contact Mitch at as soon as you can. You must submit a recent race time (one where you put some effort in to make it fair), preferably over a similar distance (eg Parkrun, 5 miles, 10k), but it is possible to convert any distance to give you your staggered start time.

Time is used as a handicap – so the slower runners start first, and faster runners start later. The faster you are, the more time you have added to slow you down. The theory is that the amount of time that is added varies so that all runners should cross the finish line at exactly the same time…therefore, the runner who puts in the most effort is the one who wins!

Points are awarded depending upon your finish position, and a runner needs to compete in at least three of the four races to be eligible for the championship. There are prizes at stake for the winner of each race and the overall winner! There will be time penalties for those finishing in the top five places – this is to help mix things up. If you can only make one or two races, still come along as it a fun event and good for learning your race craft.

You can take part in as many races as you like.  And the runner with the best 3 scores wins the prestigious Shield! Absolutely anyone can win this! It’s fabulous fun for you being chased by faster runners and chasing slower runners and for Mitch watching you all get closer together!


What do I need to do?

If you have already taken part in one of the handicap races this year, then you don’t need to do anything! Just come along on race night!

If you have not taken part previously this year you need to submit a recent race time by email to Peter Mitchener via – or leave a message on Facebook. This is to allow him to calculate your handicap time. If you don’t have a race time at all, then give him an honest estimate as to how fast and far you run – and he can make a guess! To assist with the guess, let Peter know which group you run in on a Wednesday.

If you have emailed – you SHOULD receive a response, please contact again if this is not the case.


Why should I do it?

Well first off it should be fun….honest!

As the club will be doing four races, it will be an opportunity to gauge progress over the summer, as all races will be on the same course.

It will allow you to perfect your pace – a critical skill in getting the best from your running!

Also it will be an opportunity to mix the normal Wednesday running groups up and race against people you would not normally run with.

It will also hopefully encourage you to push yourself a little bit more as in theory everyone has an equal opportunity to win – not just the ‘racing snakes’.

Many other running clubs operate similar events, which prove to be very successful.

If you are unfamiliar with the route – please look at the document below.


How do you work out the handicaps?

Using a well accepted formula [T2 = T1 x (D2/D1)1.06] you can calculate, given a recent race time, an APPROXIMATE time for any other race distance, in this instance 7.2km.

This formula is used to calculate a handicap for those who have not previously taken part. Once they have an ACTUAL race time that will be used.

More information on the calculations.

Where possible, new series handicap times for individuals will be based upon an average time from the previous year. This may prove to be an advantage…or a disadvantage!

Handicap Race Rules

Although this is a ‘fun’ event, we do have some rules to ensure that is fair for all as there are prizes and awards at stake at the end of the series

Handicap Race Rules


Handicap Race Route

As mentioned the race covers three laps and is based at ‘Old Pats’. Whilst we will endeavour to mark the race route with chalk arrows, it is the responsibility of the runner to familiarise themselves with the race route. Click on the pdf icon below for details of the race route.

Handicap race route