Almost Athletes Handicap Race Series


We expect to repeat this popular event in 2024


What is it?

The Almost Athletes Handicap Championship is a series of four races during the summer that allow all runners to compete on a level playing field (more or less!). The races are 4½ miles (over three laps) around Leckhampton, based at ‘Old Pats’.

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.

If you wish to take part in 2024, Peter ‘Mitch’ Mitchener) will, in around April time, be asking for entries and your recent race times to determine everyone’s staggered starting time! It’s so much fun!


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.


What do I need to do?

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

If you have not taken part previously 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.

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

AA Welcome MS Word AA Welcome PDF

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.

AA Welcome PDF