The A20 Pathway 17.3

Has anyone entered this race. It sound like a great race. I have never run on the North Downs so that will be a nice experience.


  • Looks like most of it is run along side the A20.  A really boring route.  There are so many loops that can be done on the downs that does not take you along side the A20 so why not use them.

    Velocity also do a 10k at the end of the year that runs along side the A20.  It is so dull.

  • I am only doing it as a training run for FLM and we get the change to try out a new campsite near by.

  • oooh was about to do this...but maybe not!

  • It might be dull and boring, but I guess you need to train mentally as well as physically. How much of the course is off road ? Anybody know ? I tried to map it and there seemed to be roads all the way.
  • Plodding Dave - never done this race before. People also make races as well the scenery. You never know what it is like until you do it.
  • About 12 miles of this run is off-road , ie on the pathway that runs alongside the A20 , as most of us are aware , traffic and runners are not allways a good mix so i thought it might help people relax a bit more if more running was off-road , as for loops up over the Downs , yes , there are multitudes of routes you can take over many different distances BUT !!! can someone find me 50-60 marshalls to cover every twist and turn ??? I'd rather keep the run straightforward and invest  a) in the venue , which has just about ticks every box on the list of competitors basic needs and b) water stations , which will occur at 7 different distances and c) electronc chip timing , nothing more accurate .As for the End of 08 10k dull ? Not according to everyone who has either e-mailed me personally or recorded their comments on the Runners World forum for the last two years , its a fast and accurate course with enough undulations to be a challenge ( as the A20 will be) yet has still seen the winners record under 34mins in both years .
  • Well I entered on-line today. Looking forward to it as one on my club mates is doing it and maybe another one.
  • I've signed up - not been past 15 miles in 12 years so I'm looking forward to this with a certain trepidation. All part of the prep for Edingburgh Marathon at the end of May.

    Anyone else staying at the hotel the night before? Booked that as well. 

    Do I need off road shoes? 

  • MarkC - we are staying in the local Caravan Club campsite which is 1.2 miles from the start. That could be my warm up image
  • No off-road shoes required , its tarmac path and tarmac road .
  • MS - Thanks for the heads up on shoes .... I'll bring my road shoes then. Pity really ... I've just bought some rather bright Adidas Kanadias and I'm looking for an excuse to get them dirty.

    Tracey - Enjoy the Caravan Site ... it's been a while since I've camped before a race .... my warm up will be a wander downstairs. I'm of the view that every yard I do as warm up is one less I'll be able to do in the race image 

  • I've just entered this one as its the perfect distance on the right day for my training for FLM 2009. Im also staying at the hotel the night before. Got to give something back to the family for dragging them to every race I do and being out for hours every Sunday during Marathon training. Im looking forward to it as going anywhere different on a long run makes it less painful. I think!

    Keep Running

  • Mark - Our caravan has electric heating we will be lovely and warm.
  •   Did a Recce of the area on sunday; if we're hitting the North Downs, prepare for steep hills,and

    yes,pretty much stick to road shoes,as much of this looks like tarmac. I reckon this is a good trainer for

    the FLM, as the effort put into this run, cos of the hills ,will feel like you've done a marathon.  Mark-C

    use the Kanadias on the 10K sevenoaks week before this one. Almost all off road and a good race to

    speed train on soft ground.

  • So a bit like Beachy Head but on the road image
  • If the hill i went up from Hollingbourne which takes to the North Downs is the way we,re going,

    then yep we,ve got a bit of work to do.

  • HW  - when you say "looks like tarmac" does that mean you think the tarmac is covered by mud or ???  Do you think road shoes will really be best please?
  • HW - I've got a muddy 5 miler closer to home the week before this so will christen the new shoes there.

     Not loving the idea of steep hills but it's got to be done image

  • The hill up to the North Downs wont be Hollingbourne , that is a real punisher , no , the hill climb is Hubbards Hill down in Lenham , its  a gradual climb of about 1mile , i checked the whole course last friday and not much sign of mud ,


  •  Mark-C , Great , but you're missing out on a great 10k,thats got a long gradual hill and a steep climb

    at the end of it and then flat until you come round to it again. This race is 2 laps in beautiful grounds

    and a great atmoshere,and well worth the trip,great speed work training,and preps you up for the pathway run the following week.

    ,Multisport, thanks for the info,that is definitely a relief to know.Hubbards is kinder,and shouldn't be

    a problem.

    Lazybones,definitely use road shoes,its more hard surface than not. Might encounter some off road

    but not enough to put on offroaders.

  • I am training for LFM and have entered as it fits into my plan perfectly. But, this is the first official race I have ever entered. As far as I'm concerned all I need to bring are myself and running gear. Could any of you experienced pros tell me if I should be bringing anything else, or is it that simple?
  • David - bring some safety pins to pin your number on with.  Bring any energy drinks/gels or sweets that you normally do your long run with.
  •      Or one better , buy double sided sticky tape which is better .

  • And keep up with someone who provides the confectionary
  • David - first proper race a 17.3 .... I'm impressed ... or maybe you're mad image

    I'd get a couple more in (10K races will do) before FLM if you can so you can practice race prep although nothing really prepares you for the big one. I did it in 1997 (didn't run anywhere again until last year) and it's like nothing else you'll do. However doing a few races teaches you all sorts of things .... safety pins as Tracey notes above (I now own 100s) , drinks etc, what actually fits in the bag you want to leave behind, charging your watch if you use one, whether those trackie bottoms really slip off over your shoes. I'm sure there are many more things but these are a few from personal experience.

    I've no idea how big the Pathway run will be but the real shock of doing bigger races is the sheer volume of people you are running with for the first few miles. I've done races where pace is completely out of your hands for a couple of miles because you're in such a big bunch.

  • Thanks very much for your replies.....very helpful.....will try and get a couple more runs in defo....and I'll go and get those safety pins!!! see you all there....
  • I entered on line through runner's world, has anyone had a number through or do we pick them up in the morning, just another concern don't the clocks change that day?!  Early start!!!

  • Hi all,

    I run part of the course last Sunday (got a bit lost after hubbards hill turning left instead of right and came down onto the A20 too early and had to do a bit of a loop around Lenham to get the 17.3 miles in. Doh!).

    The first 6 miles is very undulating before turning left into Hubbards Hill. The hill is quite a killer but doable. The biggest issue was the wind. Hopefully this won't be an issue on the day but on Sunday the 17.3 miles (my longest ever run) felt like an marine assault course. I was doing my level best to stay upright on the downs. At the end of the run I felt completely battered, like I'd been in a ring with Tyson!!

     After Hasting this week (with a 7 mile uphill start) it may well end up being a breeze (pardon the pun)...

    Looking forward to it.... 


  • Tracey GTracey G ✭✭✭
    Kellie - you collect you number an chip on the day. You have to check their website for further details this week.
  • Thanks Tracey, oh and I checked the clocks dont change until the next weekend so thats another hour in bed - relief!
Sign In or Register to comment.