The Hogs Back Road Race has been awarded it’s second consecutive Gold Award from the British Association of Road Races. The event, which is delivered by aat-events on behalf of Guildford and Godalming Athletics Club, will return for it’s 58th year on 2 December 2018. The event sells out well in advance every year, so those wanting to take part are urged to enter now.
The British Association of Road Races (BARR) was formed in 1984 in response to the increasing number of road running events – following the popularity of the New York and London Marathons. These new events faced all kinds of issues involving road safety, policing, marshalling etc. which had not been a feature of either track or cross-country events. There were no rules of governance, recommended standards or any organisation to which those putting on the events could turn to for advice, so BARR pioneered a system of race grading by which they could encourage race directors to develop their events to even higher standards. Thus events were to be graded not upon size, but upon the quality of their race provision and organisation. Today BARR remains a membership association open to those events affiliated to United Kingdom Athletics – to which The Hogs Back Road Race is proudly affiliated.
Organisers aat-events are delighted to receive a second Gold Award for the event – the highest award that BAAR offer in recognition of “outstanding race management, exceptionally high standard of race organisation and commitment to runners.” aat-events have delivered the event for the past 7 years, and have seen the number of attendees double from 2016 – 2017. Organisers have worked hard to maintain the authenticity of the event, whilst adding new features to the event – such as a live DJ and the large pig medals – to appeal to more runners.
The chip-timed event is the last event of the year in the aat-events calendar; many runners choose to race to celebrate Christmas and the end of the year with their club, colleagues and friends. The run starts and finishes at the majestic and historical venue Loseley House, and an experienced race pacing team guide runners along the unusual 11.4km distance – the route trace for which looks remarkably like a pig. Event sponsor Wilkins Kennedy organise a water station at around 5km to quench the thirst of runners at the top of a steep hill. Once runners have completed the race, they enjoy celebrating their achievements with photos in selfie frames and a cheeky pig prop, and can get a free sports massage with event partner Guildford Sports Clinic. The Hogs Back Brewery and local run club Fitstuff sponsor the prizes for the event.
Sausage and bacon baps from local company The Giggly Pig Co. have been a welcome addition to the “hog-themed event” too. All their pigs rare breed saddleback pigs bred on their own farm and renowned for their delicious taste. Cafe2U also attend the event with a choice of barista-style coffee and tea.
Rob Sweetman will act as Event Director for the event in 2018.