Its Grim up North

RicFRicF ✭✭✭

Sheffield Half Marathon. Cancelled because of a lack of water.

How soft do the organisers think the runners are?


  • As soft as the first timer who doesn't know what he is doing.

    That's the problem.  An experienced runner could probably go without water given how mild the weather is, but a beginner who is already pushing themselves to the limit could get into medical trouble without sufficient hydration.  The organisers have to consider everyone and all abilities when they make their judgement call

    Also, if it was run under UKA rules, I think that water every 5k is a condition of the race license but I'm willing to be corrected on that if I have it wrong

  • Ah But that's Yorkshire, perhaps they were going to sell it at each water station ?
  • My Grandad says in his day people used to go days without water whilst cowering in bunkers from German bombs.

    But then he also claimed he walked uphill 10 miles to school ... both ways.

    So I take his claims with a pinch of salt.



  • lol, no ...... although its been a pretty busy few months for me which hasn't helped ... but thats all sorted now ...



  • Dave, Yorkshire folk wouldn't sell the water, it'd still be free but we'd give our traditional war cry as we picked it up. 'OW MUCH???
  • DeanR7DeanR7 ✭✭✭

    shame the organisors didnt think, if i send someone to the major supermarkets and buy all the plastic cups and get some local with a hose pipe to fill them up constantly or buy cheap own brand water bottles we could get over this masssive issue

  • I dont think they cancelled it because they thought people couldn't get round without a drink, I think they cancelled it because if someone collapsed of dehydration their H and S officials would have been in a lot of (legal) trouble. Someone was covering their own arse?

    As it was many of us ran anyway and the good people of Sheffield came out of their homes and businesses with water and sweets. Many people spectating went to supermarkets and bought water out of their own money to give to strangers to help them finish. My first half I plodded round (never walked!) and finished approx 2.25, chuffed but a bit hungover today image

  • MillsyMillsy ✭✭✭
    A very simple solution Dean.

    You wonder why they weren't considering this at some point on the Saturday when the shops were still open?

    Surely as an organiser you would make sure stuff like water was already on-site at least 24 hrs before the start to give you time to go to Plan B if that was necessary.
  • Completely agree Millsy.

  • Massive cockup there - but these things do happen occasionally.

    Personally - it wouldnt matter to me about no water on a cool day - but as I understand it - the regulations for races are that you have to have water stations in a half. If they'd gone ahead - then their insurance wouldn't cover them, and it would only take one sneaky lawyer...
  • DeanR7DeanR7 ✭✭✭

    agreed, but its not like the regulations were asking for saffron in kilo bags or ground unicorn horn.  it was water...any reasonable go getter could have rustled up a contingency plan and had water on the course at very short notice.

  • Anyone know who the suppier was? Missed out on sheffield this weekend as was doing manchester. This might kill the race.

    I'm surpliced they didn't leg it to costco/Macro/tesco's ect or something just before the start and ask for 4000 bottle's of water would have been a major publiserty stunt for the supermarket but getting it round the course might have been to much unless someone had some lorries handy.

    Good to hear the local's came out in force through when folks did it anyway. But this is poor hoping this does't distroy the race for furture years there is a news story going round that there will be no re-fund's They don't have to give them but still rubbish.

  • All the news reports just adding to the weight of the 'Water Mafia' like you can't function without two gallons of the stuff each day! People in the UK should be bloody happy with their tap water, alot of other people around the world would die for it.

    Don't get me started on Evian with their fcuking weird baby adverts. Scummy industry.

  • M..o.useM..o.use ✭✭✭

    Regs stipulate that they have to have a certain amount of water (I don't have the figures for how much) for feedstations every 3 miles.  Margaret Lilley (chair of organisers) states that they did contact local supermarkets but they were still unable to satisfy those criteria, whatever they may be.  I suspect they'd have to have 4000 bottles of water at each of those stations (3, 6, 9, 12 and the end) so you're looking at 20,000 bottles of water.

    If they were unable to meet safety regs, they were likely to be in breach of their licensing/contract which means that there may be insurance issues should anybody collapse on course.  They weren't prepared to risk being sued.

    A couple of thoughts on refunds.  Race cancellation insurance is phenomenally expensive. They may not be insured.  This means that they will still have to pay for costs incurred.  They won't be able to claim to pay the athletes back.  This would potentially bankrupt them and jeopardize future races.  Also, race cancellation insurance may not cover them for something like this, which may well be down to human error and not terrible weather (for example.)

    Lots of sides, lots of angles.  Must confess, I sit on the side of wondering why the water was being delivered on race morning.  I can see that they probably couldn't have it on course from Friday afternoon as it's a closed road event but you'd think they could have it being delivered slightly earlier than the news reports imply.

  • That's how I see it. Surely the best thing to do is arrange to have the water delivered to some sort of storage facility several days in advance.

  • MuttleyMuttley ✭✭✭

    I did a race once when they had had the water delivered to the feed stations the night before. By morning one load (on pallets) had been nicked. You can't win.

  • Wot Mouse and Screamy said image

  • As a wider point, the regulations are clearly nonsense. One water station at 7 miles is more than sufficient for a 1/2M; if you want more, carry it yourself!

    This is what happens when governing bodies get hold of sports; the rules become more complex without there being any benefit... and the prices go up!


  • Well looks like this might cause a few problems for the race and might even stop it happening from the local press shame It's always been a good one in the past and they have been under pressure from the bupa series that do a over priced 10k later on in the year. Hopefully it will be back. Latest from the fail out, Wonder why it took them two days to say that's why they didn't deliver? Thinking there is more to this.

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