21 Jun

Those Summer Nights

Lady runner at sunset

As we near the height of the British summer, runners start to see a glut of evening events on the race calendar.

And while this year’s weather has not hit the searing heights of last year, the longer nights and warmer temperatures still lend themselves to race organisers being able to flex beyond the routine Sunday morning slot.

For runners, it gives a varied choice of events and some real gems on the calendar, that tap into the season and create their own unique atmosphere and buzz.

One of my personal favourites is the Black Rock 5 in Fife, Scotland, a Friday night special that includes a wade into the sea, a bagpiper, a ridiculously steep finish and a beer for all finishers. Oh, and a big black rock too. What more do you want from a Friday night run?

At the opposite end of the UK are the Erme Valley Relays near Ivybridge in Devon. A great team event starting and finishing at the local rugby club with a rural, undulating 2.5 mile loop.

It is a colourful running club classic with strong participation across the West Country cheered on by team-mates and a band of supporters getting merrier by the minute thanks to the proximity to the bar.

In the capital, the London Sri Chimnoy Monday evening races from May to August in leafy Battersea Park provide the perfect antidote to the stressful city life.

These few weeks are a rare opportunity to race in the evening and savour a different event atmosphere - take the opportunity and enjoy it.