Run Reigate is an annual running festival held in Reigate, Surrey and attracts over 3,000 competitors. This huge celebration of running consists of a half marathon, 10k, and 5k, and takes place on fully closed roads.
Registration & Pre-Race
When you sign up for this race, you have the option to pay extra to have your race pack posted to you. The other options are to pick up your pack from Reigate throughout the week leading up to the race or to pick it up from the registration tent on the day. Having so many options means that you don't have to queue and picking up your race pack on the day is very easy and straight forward as most people already have theirs.
The running festival and start/finish are located in Reigate Priory Park which is a beautiful park in the heart of Reigate and there are lots of different tents from various suppliers, such as On Running, Wagamama, as well as the park's cafe which is open and plenty of portaloos!
Queuing for the toilet before a race is always a pain – I nearly missed the start of a race once because I'd been in the toilet queue for an hour! Thankfully, there are free public toilets a short walk from the park as well as toilets in the park's cafe and of course the portaloos which are provided by the race organisers. This meant there was never too much waiting around, which there could've been with so many people in attendance.
There was a mass warm up before the race hosted by ultra runner Susie Chan and the atmosphere was amazing. The start was very well organised – there were thousands of people to get over the start line but the start pens were well laid out and it was all very civilised. There were also pacers for various finishing times which is always a nice touch.
Out onto the run, and it was a beautiful day. The route is on fully closed roads and it is absolutely amazing how many supporters there were! All of the residential roads had people outside their houses cheering us on, playing music, and giving out jelly babies. Kids were giving high fives and it felt really special.
The first half a mile or so is all uphill which was a surprise however it's a pretty gentle incline and actually helps to get you warmed up without blowing you up too early on. After that, the elevation profile is gently undulating, with a few small inclines but which are always followed by gentle declines. The only stinger is the hill in the last 2 miles which I had heard people talking about right from the beginning.
The route is all on beautiful country lanes as well as some residential roads. Despite the sunshine and heat for the 2019 event, the majority of the run is in the shade thanks to the trees and this meant no one was suffering and no one was complaining about the heat!
The route is all on smooth tarmac and there are no technical areas at all. You can just enjoy your run and the beautiful scenery.
Organisation & Support
The support at this race was some of the best I've ever experienced and really made this run special. There are bands playing music at various places around the route and there are plenty of marshals. The whole area of Reigate & Banstead clearly enjoy this yearly spectacle and it's great that so many people come out to cheer on the runners.
The run is organised very well and everything went smoothly. Right from the moment you arrive, there is free parking available in various places around the town with car park marshals directing you. You receive a beautiful medal at the end of the race as well as KIND bars, water, bananas, and a race t-shirt.
I can honestly say I really enjoyed this half marathon and I would definitely recommend it to anyone looking for a fun, enjoyable race.