Criss-crossing a picturesque valley, this tough ten mile outing attracts about 400 runners and is well-organised and marshaled by Cirencester Athletics Club. The race starts and finishes in a field next to the village hall, mostly following farm tracks and footpaths. Fun to run, the outward five miles is mostly flat or downhill, with one enjoyable leg through a scenic glade sloping gently towards the valley floor. About half way round, there is a water station, followed soon after by a stream crossing that will leave your wet feet for the rest of the run.
In the second half, there are several hills including a long, gruelling climb on a path of loose stones around the seven mile mark, followed by another hard, but shorter, climb a mile or so later. Many of the older runners, in their forties and fifties, walk sections of these hills. Thankfully, the last mile is mostly flat and you can put in a short finishing sprint in front of the small crowd in the final field. The entry fee is £8.50 and you get to use the basic showers and changing facilities in the village hall. Afterwards, the hungry runners form a good-natured queue at the coffee and cake stall. 8/10