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ESSENTIAL EVENT INFORMATION 2024

Due to the scale and nature of Rat Race Events, changes to the event course, structure and timings sometimes need to be made right up until the date of the event. To ensure you have the latest information and are fully prepared for the challenge that lies ahead, please checkback on this EEI before travelling to the event.

This EEI was last updated on: 29/02/2024

WELCOME TO THE RUNNING ADVENTURE OF A LIFETIME. 
WELCOME TO RUN BRITANNIA 2024. 

The time is nearly here. In just 3 months, we will RV at Lands’ End ahead of the journey of a lifetime. We cannot wait to welcome you to the start of this mammoth adventure! Further to our webinars and other information that has been shared with you so far, this document is designed to give you a bit of info about what you can expect during your challenge and details of anything that you need to do beforehand. This should answer any questions you might have about the event, but please do reach out to me and your RR Crew if you need to know anything else.

See you in Lands’ End, let’s Run Britannia!

James,
Event Manager

KEY LINKS:
KEY REMINDERS:

Make sure you’ve read this thoroughly well ahead of your departure date to ensure there are no last minute panics or surprises, if you have any questions after reading this please reach out to us on events@ratrace.com

SKIP TO SECTION

REGISTRATION, TRAVEL & ACCOMODATION

REGISTRATION

Friday 31st May 2024, 1500 hours at the Lands End Hostel.

We will be basing ourselves at YHA Lands’ End for a few nights starting on the Friday 31st arrival. This is where registration will take place.

The crew will be arriving on the Thursday 30th to get ourselves set & ready to welcome you all in. Some of you have also expressed interest in joining us at the YHA on Thursday (the day before reg). There are still spaces so do indicate in the pre-event form if you would like to secure a bed (at cost) for Thursday 30th.

On the Friday 31st we will be ready to welcome you to get yourselves settled into the accommodation and register at YHA Lands End from 1500 onwards. After we’ve shown you to your bed / room, during registration we will issue you with your Adventure Pack.

 

There is one Adventure pack per person. Your Event Pack will contain:

  • Event bib number – You do not need to wear this, this is for souvenir purposes only. You may wear it if you wish to. The compulsory item is the tracker.

  • Numbered tags for your bags x 3 (overnight bag, transition bag, running bag). These tags may break over time. Please ensure that your bags are well labelled and identifiable.

  • Satellite Tracking device.

After we have everyone registered and you have had some time to settle in, we will host a welcome briefing in the YHA at 1730. We will keep this short and sweet as you can expect many morning and evening briefings throughout the event. 1 day at a time is very much the theme for this one, so we’ll try not to chew your ear off on day 1!

 

TRAVEL

Getting There - 31st May

To registration (and accommodation for the first 2 nights):

YHA Lands End, Letcha Vean in, Penzance, Cornwall TR19 7NT

The nearest train station to Lands End is Penzance. From Penzance there is a local bus service to nearby St Just, a short 2/3 min walk away from Lands End.

Please do make use of us, your RR Crew if you are unsure of the best way to get to Lands End. Please make use of your fellow RB companions too and do use the Facebook group if you think you may be able to help someone out with a lift, or if you think you could benefit from being given a hand. 

Please note, the Lands’ End hostel is located on a small country lane and there is very limited parking. The spots will likely all be taken up by event vehicles, so if you are intending to be dropped of by friends or family, this is welcome but please be advised parking may be unavailable other than drop off only.   

Getting Away - 6th July

On our final night (Friday 5th July), we will be staying at Thurso Premier Inn. After a celebratory meal, we’ll be saying our goodbyes on the morning of 6th July and heading our separate ways. Some of you may wish to stay in Thurso so have an extended explore whilst basking in the glory of just having Run Britannia! Others will need to get back to real life commitments, or just a night in your own bed...

We can help you with onward travel as far as Inverness. I am provisionally proposing that we lay on transfer services for you from our accommodation in Thurso to Inverness at 0700 and 0900.

 

However, there is some flexibility on these times and we will do our best to cater to all of you. It is approximately 2 hours 30 minute journey time from Thurso to Inverness Town Centre or airport, the two are not far away from each other.

ACCOMMODATION

The accommodation is now all booked up and you can find a complete list of the locations and dates in the itinerary below. The accommodation is a mix of hostels, hotels, holiday parks and B&B’s.

 

There is no camping and bed linen will always be provided. Towels will not always be provided, and you should pack a travel towel.

 

Sleeping bags are not required. Rooming generally on a twin basis, however there will occasionally be dorm style layouts in some of the hostels.

36 nights is a long time to be away from your own bed. As you know, good quality sleep will be essential to speeding your recovery, so remember to bring a sleep setup that works for you; mask, ear plugs, & cosiest PJ’s!

Please do your best to keep on top of your personal admin in each of your temporary homes for our 36 nights on the go! When living & sleeping spaces are shared, it’s going to make everyone’s lives more comfortable and convenient if you can keep everything tidy and together. So for your own benefit of not losing and / or forgetting things and for others benefit, IE not tripping over your pants in the middle of the night when they need the loo.. please keep things tidy.

You will have the option to share any rooming preferences with us via the pre-event form linked in this document.

A final note that kind of ties in with accommodation; laundry.

We will provide a laundry service at cost, at least once per week. It may be more frequent than this, where opportunity allows. Typically, we will ask that you prepare your laundry on the Friday night and leave it to be collected by us. We will take it away and return it to you as soon as possible, on the Saturday night or the Sunday morning. You will be charged at cost for this service, and it is not compulsory. A mesh laundry bag is a must – these are easily found online, e.g. Amazon. Example.

EVENT ITINERARY

The table HERE shows a daily breakdown of where you are running to and from, where we will be accommodating each night and where and when the rest days are.

 

THE DAILY SCHEDULE 

Run Britannia is pure and simple in that the format is eat, sleep, run, repeat. Yes there will be some recovery elements, admin time and a few other bit and bobs, but most of your time will be taken up by running & sleeping.

 

As we discussed in the webinar, we will aim to settle into a regular daily routing so that you know what to expect each day and this should help your minds & bodies to fall into habit. This was tried and tested to positive effect on the test pilot.

 

Here is an overview of how you can expect things to unfold on a ‘typical’ Run Britannia day.

 

NB. The times given below are in no way fixed and examples given are NOT reflective of any ‘cut off’ times. This is purely an example, based on typical timings of a standard Run Britannia day. Longer days could be a 7pm finish, shorter days may be 3pm. This is all fine.

 

Morning – Admin & Prep

0600 Personal admin / Clinic (injury treatment, taping, pre-hab)

0630 Overnight bags & transition bags outside to be loaded into vehicles.

0630 Breakfast.

0700 Toilet!

0730 Transfer to start location.

0750 Faff.

0755 Final pre-run mini briefing

 

During the Day – Running, fueling & Recovering

0800 Start running.

1000 PS1 / 2nd Brekkie.

1200 PS2 / Lunch, access transition bags.

1400 PS3 / Afternoon Tea.

1600 Onwards Finish, recovery snacks at the van.

After the Run – Recovery snacks, Kit Admin, Hygiene, Meal, Bags, Clinic & Sleep

1630 Transfer to accommodation.

1700 Arrive at accommodation.

1700-1830 Personal kit admin checklist; Empty rubbish, dry wet kit, refill water, refill snacks, layout run clothes for next day, charge electricals.

Shower / wash some kit if you need to

Clinic before or after dinner

1830 Dinner in or near accommodation

2000 Finish sorting bags ready for the morning

Extra recovery; Massage gun, stretching, rolling, strength, tennis ball, clinic, taping.

2100 Sleep

0000 Midnight munchies

REST DAY ROUTINE

The rest days are quite simply, just that. They are yours to do with what you will. If you’re wondering what a rest day might look like, here’s our suggestion:

  • Prep laundry the night before.

  • Wake up for brekkie at a time that you are used to (body clock might prevent you from a lay in!)

  • Go back to bed for a nap.

  • Stretch, have a light walk.

  • Fuel throughout the day as if you were running – no coke, gels etc, but lots of food & hydration.

  • Don’t overstretch yourself on social commitments.

  • Get to bed early.

Be warned – although you are not ‘running’ on the rest day, you are unlikely to want to do a great deal to fill that empty day. Take caution when considering any work or social commitments. Even though you have free time, you may not have energy for much. Be kind to your body and give it the rest it needs. If you plan on binging Netflix in bed and hiring someone for the day to bring you snacks, we shan’t stop you!

 KIT LIST & PACKING GUIDANCE 

Kit is always an important topic, and it may seem like a mammoth task to pack and be ready for the start line. But it need not be so bad. When thinking about your packing, think of it as a week lone running event and take what you would need for that, plus a little spare.

Remember, clothes can and will be washed as you go, we are never too far from shops should you need something picked up and you can always order deliveries of personal nutrition top ups or other bits and bobs like that to the accommodation ahead, ready for you when you need it.

We created a kit info & packing video which you can watch back HERE.

MANDATORY KIT

No doubt you’ll have all spent an age finessing and refining your kit ahead of this. Nevertheless, just to be on the safe side, we shall complete a quick kit check. Please remember to pack:

  • Waterproof jacket and trousers with TAPED or WELDED seams

  • A working headtorch

  • Survival bag (NOT blanket)

  • A First Aid Kit including a triangular or comformable roller bandage and a separate sterile absorbent material (e.g. gauze or gauze bandage)

  • Some form of hi-vis to keep you safe whilst running on the roads.

  • Backpack / running pack or vest that will be used to carry mandatory kit with you during the event.

  • Hydration pack and / or bottles, sufficient to carry minimum 1L water.

  • Subject to the forecast weather conditions you may be asked to show any other items from the mandatory kit list. This will be communicated in advance if this is the case. If you do not have the appropriate kit with you when you register, you will not be allowed to run. Much of the kit is not for when you are moving but if you become unable to move and are awaiting assistance. It is your responsibility to work with this system and respect the plan put in place by our safety team.

You must have all the mandatory kit as outlined.

We recommend that your kit is packed into 3 separate areas:

1. Overnight bag

2. Transition bag

3. Running pack

 

We have an explanation and a suggested list for each of these below. This list is a guide. You may not want to bring all of this along, but we don’t think you will need much more than this.

 

    1. Overnight bag, up to 70L / 15KG: this is your main bag with most of your kit for the trip, including spare kit, evening kit, wash kit etc. You will leave it at the start of each day for transportation to the overnight accommodation. There is a size and weight limit due to limitations of our transporting vehicles and we may check bags if considered bulky and/or overweight. Please do not pack any fragile items or liquids in weak containers as they may leak in transit. Bags should be waterproof as they may be exposed to the rain and may sit on wet ground. Remember, you have the additional capacity of your transition bag and running pack. If you can’t fit all your kit into a 70L, you have too much. Simple.

RUNNING CLOTHES

  • 1 x trail shoes

  • 1 x hybrid shoes

  • 1 x cushioned road shoes

  • 2 x vests

  • 2 x short sleeve tee

  • 2 x long sleeve tee / base layer

  • 3 x shorts

  • 2 x tights

  • 7 x underwear (if you use it!)

  • 7 x socks (mix of long, short, compression)

 

RECOVERY KIT

  • Tennis ball / small foam roller (hollow options are good to save space in bag)

  • 1 x magic massage cream / gel

  • 1 x compression tights

 

CASUAL CLOTHES

  • 2 x shorts

  • 1 x trousers or joggers

  • 3 x tees

  • 1 x jumper / hoody

  • 1 x casual trainers

 

WASH KIT

  • Travel towel

  • Toothbrush, paste & charger if electric

  • Sanitary products

  • Razor – or commit to the full Forest (Gump, not any other kind..)

  • Soap / shower gel etc

  • Moisturizer

  • Lip balm

 

ENTERTAINMENT

  • Headphones

  • Book

  • Tablet or ipad with films & music downloaded

 

SLEEP

  • Eye mask

  • Earplugs (check they work for you)

  • Sleepwear

 

     2. Pit Stop / Finish Line bag, up to 35L: this is a smaller bag that you will be able to access at least once throughout the day at PS2 / lunch (more often if logistics allow) and at the finish line. In here you may pack warm layers for quick access when you finish, personal nutrition if you wish to supplement what we offer at the Pit Stops with your own personal favourites, and anything else that you may want or need during the day & at the finish line!

SPARES / EXTRAS YOU MAY WISH TO ACCESS MID-RUN

  • Personal nutrition & hydration top ups

  • Change of running clothes (warmer / colder options in case of weather change)

  • Waterproof bottoms, always in your transition bag or running pack

  • Tablets / creams (ibuprofen, deep heat, whatever you prefer)

  • Spare shoes in case of terrain change

  • Foot care kit, if not in running pack

 

BITS AND PIECES FOR THE FINISH LINE

  • Snacks

  • Protein powder

  • Bottle / shaker

  • Wet wipes

  • Warm layer

  • Sliders / flip flops

 

      3. Race day bag: this is the bag you will keep with you on your person at all times throughout each of the race days. It is essential that you can fit all of the mandatory kit in this bag. We recommend that you train with it before the event so that you know it well and you minimise the chance of kit problems on the day!

  • 10 – 20L pack

  • Poles

  • Hydration bladder

  • 2 x soft flask

  • Personal nutrition

  • Survival bag

  • Small first aid / foot management kit

  • Power pack & spare cable for phone

  • Waterproof jacket

  • Waterproof bottoms (it won’t be mandatory to carry these at all times)

  • Lube

  • Sunglasses

  • Cap

  • Buff/s

  • Headtorch

 

To recap – 1 x 70L bag which you will only have access to at the overnight accommodation (15kg max), 1 x 35L will be transported to the pit stops during the day for you and your race bag.

ROUTE & NAVIGATION

THE ROUTE

The route can be found HERE to gain an overview of the adventure that lies ahead.

You have a real treat in store here. The route we have created is an absolute corker, if we do say so ourselves. The route was checked in full during the 2022 Test Pilot event and refined further in 2023. You will cover sections along some of the best trails in the UK, as well as finding yourself experiencing euphoric moments on the little-known and unexpected gems you’ll discover.

Please be aware that due to the nature of events like this, particularly with the scale of Run Britannia, it is almost certain that we will be forced to make route changes during the event. This could be due to trail closures, livestock, weather or any other number of factors. When this does happen, safe to say that your Rat Race crew will be right there supporting you and getting you back on track as soon as we can.

GPX files will not be shared in advance. We will share these with you much closer to, or on the event. We will also share more detailed information about what each day’s route has in store the night before the event, so that you know what to prep for the day ahead.

We will share a separate route document with an updated table with the daily distance and elevation stats within the next few weeks.

NAVIGATION

At the beginning of each week, I will share the GPX files with you for that week. Please upload them to your watch and your phone navigation app. For the more remote regions, I would always recommend downloading the background mapping layers for offline use. Hopefully, you are now all jedi Garmin (or similar!) navigators, but we can have a group tech / nav session pre-departure, if anyone is in need of a brush up on how to use the mobile apps.

The caveat with the route is always – it may change due to the situation on the ground – but these will be minor changes and you will of course be advised if this is the case.

From the outset, we have recommended that you all invest in a GPS watch of your own with navigational capabilities. It’s important that you practice with this, allowing you to arrive to the start line confident that you are going to be able to navigate the route – and not add a ton of unnecessary extra mileage due to getting lost.

We strongly recommend that you have the route on a mobile navigation app as a back-up too. I recommend Outdoor GPS. If your watch battery dies or otherwise has a malfunction, the back-up will be a saviour. As good as GPX watches are nowadays, there may still be times when the correct route is unclear on the watch screen. Personally, I would rather stop and check the route on my phone and go the right way. I have learned this after many instances of running along a hedge line for half a mile and then discovering that barbed wire and 6 foot of hawthorne separates me from the correct route, on the other side of the hedge line. That’s a lot of extra miles if you do that once or twice a day for 5 weeks! 

COMMUNICATING LOCATION / ROUTE INFO

There will be times when we need to communicate information about your location or the route with each other. During these instances it is good practice to be as clear and unambiguous as possible, particularly if there are safety implications dependent on this information being clear & correct.

There are several ways to achieve this; sharing Google pindrop, describing location in reference to nearest km marker on Outdoor GPS app, sharing screenshot of location on Outdoor GPS, what3words location or location relevant to obvious landmarks.

If you are sharing information about the route, Outdoor GPS is often the preference. This is especially handy through WhatsApp as it’s very easy to draw on images, therefore we can easily show alternate routes or things of that ilk. If you need to share information about where you are for, any of the above modes work well.

We strongly recommend that you have the route on a mobile navigation app as a back-up too. I recommend Outdoor GPS. If your watch battery dies or otherwise has a malfunction, the back-up will be a saviour. As good as GPX watches are nowadays, there may still be times when the correct route is unclear on the watch screen. Personally, I would rather stop and check the route on my phone and go the right way. I have learned this after many instances of running along a hedge line for half a mile and then discovering that barbed wire and 6 foot of hawthorne separates me from the correct route, on the other side of the hedge line. That’s a lot of extra miles if you do that once or twice a day for 5 weeks! 

TRACKING DEVICE

At registration you will be issued with your tracker. It is your responsibility to look after the device until you return it to us at the finish line. This device not only allows those at home to follow you on the route, but it also acts as a tracker for us too, meaning we can see where you are throughout the event.

Tracking will go live on the morning of the first day at 0700 local time.  

The trackers rely on GSM signal to report, (which is generally very good across a lot of our route) but there is a delay on tracking. Sometimes, our team back at base will increase or decrease the reporting frequency, so those watching at home will sometimes not see your dot moving or see you moving very slowly. Or they may see you adrift from others in the group. 

They are able to access the tracking at www.opentracking.com

If we have any issues or snagging with tracker units, our basecamp team can see this, and we will pull them back in and reset them for you. 

The trackers have great battery life, but we will have to charge them up once/twice in the duration of your event. They will then be re-issued to you. 

 

VERY IMPORTANT 

As we have stated, the reliability and operation of the tracking devices in this environment is likely to not be 100%, 100% of the time. As far as our safety system is concerned, we know that and we have considered that as part of our other overarching plans and risk assessment.  

For those watching the tracking at home, it is important you explain that the trackers are not always going to give a fully accurate reflection of exact locations. What can happen, (if this is not communicated on the part of the participant to their supporters), is that where people see a tracker displaying erratic behaviour or not moving, this manifests in undue worry. Over a number of days, this worry can turn to panic and raising of unnecessary alarms, from the comfort of sofas on the internet-equipped watching world-at-large. We require you to ensure that, should you decide to share the tracking link, you are unequivocal in this explanation to your supporters. We cannot afford for an international incident to be commenced as someone sitting at home in front of their desktop has decided to contact the Emergency Services as they cannot see your dot moving. It really is a deadly serious point we are making here and we thank you in advance for making this clear to your supporters at home. 

FOOD & PITSTOPS

FOOD & DRINK

The food prepared will be varied, substantial and appropriate for the type of challenge you’re undertaking. There is no need for you to supplement it with additional food, though if you wish to bring specific gels, bars, powders etc of your preferred sports nutrition brands, please do. You can keep some of this on person and keep spares in your Pit Stop bag. If you wish to purchase additional food or drinks during the trip, this will be at your own expense.

Breakfast and dinner will be your main square meals and these will be provided at or near the accommodation. 2 courses will be provided at dinner, any extras and drinks are to be covered by you.

Lunch will be on the go from Pit Stops. Generally, this will be a mix of sandwiches / wraps. We will send out a dietary requirements form for you to complete soon, along with the rooming preferences and medical declaration forms.

At a glance:

  • Inclusions: Brekkie (mix of continental and cooked), PS snacks & drinks, PS lunch on the go, finish snacks, 2 course dinner.

 

  • Exclusions: Additional courses at dinner, drinks at dinner, personal salts, electrolytes, gels, protein powders / bars, midnight munchies, caviar…

If you would like to learn a little more about nutrition for multi-day events, please check our nutrition document and webinar created with Renee McGregor.

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PIT STOPS

Pit Stop Frequency

One particularly short day has 2 Pit Stops. All other days have 3, occasionally more if it is a particularly long day. As well as the support we lay on for you, you will often be running through villages or towns between the Pit Stops that we provide. So even if it may be 10 miles between Pit Stops, you will often have additional opportunities to refill water, treat yourself to a cold drink from a shop, nip into a public loo or make use of any other services otherwise unavailable on the trails.

We think the level of Pit Stop support we have is just right – not so frequent that it will break up your rhythm with too many stops, but you should never be left wanting. We will of course be responsive and on days that the elements may be making things extra tough, we’ll try and get a cold drink or a hot brew to you when you need it most.

What’s on offer?

All the classics & more. It will be a mix of sweet, savoury and salty options, hot and cold drinks and local delicacies in the mix when the opportunity is presented.

Closer to the event, we can share a Pit Stop requests system. This is not to say that your every wish will be granted, but we will try to mix the selection up regularly and cater to your cravings / requests when we can!

Personal sports nutrition, IE any special choice of gels, bars, powders and salt tabs should be provided by you. However, we will have some electrolyte / energy drink on the go throughout

SUPPORT

THE SUPPORT

You will have myself (James) and 2 of my good friends and colleagues Jacqs and Jools with you for the entire event. The full shebang. We will be supported by a range of crew who will be joining for weekly stages and rotating in and out. At any times, you can expect up to 10 support crew comprised of drivers, Pit Stop managers, shoppers, cooks, medics and physio’s.

 

YOUR OWN SUPPORTERS

We welcome your own supporters running with you for some of the sections, should you wish to have some friendly company. They can be great for morale and give you a good boost when you’re tired and in need of a friendly face on the trails. If you do arrange for someone to join you, please remember the following:

  • They are entirely responsible for themselves in every respect.

  • Don’t let them stress you out!

  • Make sure you are respectful of your fellow runners.

That’s it. We won’t be able to feed, accommodate or transport them. They will need to look after themselves logistically and in every other manner.

PACING; ENERGY MANAGEMENT & INJURY PREVENTION

Slow and steady, day by day… Be respectful of your body throughout this challenge. Stay on top of the basics and remember these few points to help you get through in one piece:

  • Mobility / Activation when starting up .

  • Start slow and warm up into each day.

  • Respond to external factors: weather, gradient, terrain.

  • Respond to internal factors: energy, niggles, digestions.

  • Warm up again after long stops at PS’s.

  • Warm down into the finish, consider slowing down or walking for the last mile or 2.

IF YOU BECOME INJURED

If you dare to do great things, the risk of injury is often increased. The chances are high that most of you will be injured to some degree at some point in the event. Remember these points if and when that should arise:

  • Listen to your body and respond with caution.

  • Manage yourself / the injury early

  • Use the support available to you, medic and physio

  • Take rest if and when you need it – slow down or stop when the time is right

  • Use the vehicles and jump in / out of each day when building back up, it does not need to be all or nothing.

We want you to complete and enjoy as much as of this as possible. Missing half a day early when the time is right could save missing a week further down the line. It will be a tough call to make when that time is upon you, but if you have a choice to make when it comes to injury and whether to continue, listen to and respect your body when making it. The trails will be there further down the line.

 

IF YOU CAN NO LONGER RUN

If it is a sudden injury / emergency, follow the advice in our Emergency Protocol (further on in document). Overuse injuries that occur gradually are much more likely, If this happens to you, we can of course withdraw you temporarily from the event. There will be the opportunity to withdraw at the Pit Stops or wherever we can get vehicle access to you.

Once you’ve stopped and had expert medical attention, we need to reframe and create a plan to get you back into action. You will need to focus on rest and rehab. If there is the option to stay at the accommodation, this is advised to rest properly.

If this isn’t possible (IE because we are moving accommodation) then you can move forward with the event in the vehicles. Assist at PS’s on light duties if you wish, or put your feet up somewhere cosy. We will get you to the accommodation when we can.

When the time is right to start building back up, you can do so gradually with our support. We will do our best to be able to drop you for certain sections. You may want to do half a day, quarter or even a short tester walk / jog out and back from one of the PS’s. We will support you with this.

CUT OFF TIMES

Cut-off times are an important part of any Event Management Planning and Risk Assessment process. Run Britannia is no different, and there will be some days and instances where we need to put a cut off time in place and ensure that this is adhered to for your welfare and that of the crew. This becomes particularly important when we have back-to-back event days, and even back-to-back event weeks, as we do on Run Britannia. We need to ensure that you are not out in conditions that are unsafe, and that our crew are able to have enough time to look after their own welfare, admin and prep time, in addition to their day-to-day support duties.

As discussed in the build up to this challenge (on the webinar and in the Facebook group) we want to give you guys the best chance of completing this challenge and we are there to support you through that.  What we cannot manage, however, is an uncapped time limit or a free pass to take as long as you want, every day.

Generally, we will ask that you keep to a pace of around 5km per hour, or around 3 miles per hour. This leaves you 10 hours for a 50km day, 12 hours for a 60km day and so on, and so forth. There may be leniency on this at some points during the challenge, at the discretion of the Event Director. If we know a day is going to be particularly long or tough, we may aim for an earlier set off and we can leave the day running later.

What we do always need to do is make sure that we have enough time to; get you transferred from the finish line to the accommodation, feed you a good evening meal, and finally allow you the time you need for personal admin and a good night sleep. These are the things that we need to manage throughout the event and any cut off times will be set with this in mind.

Cut off times are independent of any other factors that occur earlier in the course such as start time, going the wrong way, head winds, traffic conditions whether it is your fault or not. We understand that missing cut offs can be tough to take but please remember this is not the fault of the person that breaks that news to you.

The cut off time is also independent of the time you arrive into pit stops. You must have LEFT before the cut-off time. In exceptional circumstances, such as poor weather, or other factors outside of our control, we may need to bring the cut-off times forward. You will be informed of this change at the earliest possible opportunity.

MEDICAL OPERATION & PARTICIPANT SAFETY

MEDICAL OPERATIONS

Our team is there for you in case you have an incident with which you require assistance. The team will shadow the progress of the challenge each day in vehicles; before establishing a med centre each afternoon at the our accommodation. Whilst the medics are there for ‘what ifs,’ they are also a great source of preventative advice; so please do use them to ask questions and check best practice, particularly in suspected foot, knee injuries or issues such as blisters/chaffing. 

MEDICAL SCREENING 

At this stage we are inviting you to have a medical screening process, which can be completed via the link HERE. Please complete this as soon as possible – and certainly please, no later than 14th April 2024. If you do have any condition that you feel we should know about, however small you feel it may be, please do share this with our Medics. Experience has shown that early pre-screening can assist both us and you greatly in enabling the care you need pre and during the trip. If you do not share information on conditions which are likely to affect your participation or decide to share them very late in the process, we are all under pressure and we will always reserve the right to cancel your participation if we feel there is a medical issue that may affect yours, or others’ safety. So please, do share anything and everything you feel our team should know about, at the earliest opportunity.  

IMPORTANT NOTE ON SUBMISSION OF DOCUMENTS AND MEDICAL INFORMATION:

We are very fortunate to have an excellent Medical Director providing oversight, planning and screening on all of our international trips, who in turn engages seriously professional and qualified staff to join you on the trip. Rat Race also conforms and has been audited to the rigorous BS8848 standard of expedition management. This means our approach to all things safety and medical is extremely thorough and it is designed throughout with your best interest at heart.  

 

Your medical screening details will be sent direct to our medical team and under medical confidentiality rules, this will only be shared with our medics and no-one else. If they decide this is info that is in the best interests of everyone for us as organisers to be privy to, they will seek and gain your consent before doing so. It is therefore important you complete the link to the medical survey only which can be found HERE; do not send Rat Race medical information direct. If you have any queries at all on the medical side of things in relation to this event, you can email our medical team, directly and confidentially on Trail Med and they will assist. 

INSURANCE FOR YOU AND YOUR EQUIPMENT 

We have asked that you have in place Travel Insurance cover for a minimum period of the event duration for the days you are with us on the published itinerary.  Please note this is only required for folk travelling from overseas, if you are UK based this isn't essential. 

We recommend that participants have insurance to cover damage, loss, theft, injury and non-attendance. Rat Race cannot accept any responsibility for the loss of, theft, or damage to any Participant property or the circumstances of Participant non-attendance. Within the 12-week departure window, we cannot provide any transfers and in all cases, we cannot entertain requests for refunds. We respectfully remind all participants that unforeseen circumstances preventing attendance is what travel insurance is designed for and is the reason for this as a strong recommendation on such undertakings.

 

SAFETY ON THE ROUTE

As with any other event, you need to keep your wits about you throughout Run Britannia. We want you to enjoy this and keeping yourself and fellow runners safe will be critical to this enjoyment. Each day will present its own challenges and of course these may be exacerbated when your fatigue levels rise.

This is a mixed terrain event. On road sections, all roads will be ‘Live’ public roads, private roads, and shared access trails. There are no closed roads, therefore you must always keep your wits about you for your own safety and listen out for other road users around you. You must courteously give way to other users on these routes, whether they are cars, other recreational walkers, horse riders, buggies, older people, hard of hearing etc. Despite pre-event cautions these ambient users may not know that the event is coming through, so slow down, give polite and clear instructions, and take safe passage around them. You should also ensure you’re highly visible for any road sections.

During the off-road sections, keep in mind that terrain will often be uneven, changeable, slippery and perhaps boggy. Well, almost certainly boggy in some of the Scotland sections! Pay attention to the ground ahead of you as well as underneath you and mind your foot placement at all times.

EMERGENCY PROTOCOL

In the event of a true emergency or serious incident call 999. Then contact the Event Director (that’s me, James) on 07944 655 857. In the event of a non-emergency incident but for which action is requested from the organisers then call the Event Director. This might be a medical or logistical problem, or an issue with the route. Always stop and help someone that is in difficulty, but do contact us as soon as possible so that we may come and assist.

In the instance that you should need to contact us for a true emergency or even just a smaller ‘heads up’, please remember the points on location sharing and how we can do this quickly, easily and accurately.

LITTER  

We want to show that this event has exemplary control of littering. Please help us achieve that. Pack your litter into your pack, pockets, or nearby bin bag (trash sack) at a vehicle. No exceptions. South America is a pristine wilderness environment, and our absolute commitment is to keep it that way. 

MUSIC PLAYERS  

While these are allowed, we do not advise them whilst riding, if you do use them, please control their volume according to your environment. Use your judgment at all times when listening to music or audiobooks. Please also be aware that if you cannot hear general voice levels you might miss instructions or warnings from crew, other participants or approaching vehicles. We suggest that you run the leads behind you so that persons or vehicles approaching from behind might be able to see that you are wired for sound. 

OTHER ADMIN MATTERS

TRANSFER DEADLINE

At the time of booking, on our website and within our introductory email, we made clear that your purchase is non-refundable. But up until 12 weeks prior to departure, you could use our transfer system if you wished to withdraw from the event. We respectfully remind all participants that unforeseen circumstances preventing attendance is what travel insurance is designed for and is the reason for this as a strong recommendation on such undertakings.


We want to be really clear that the transfer option is there for you if you need it. But it does have a deadline. That deadline is Saturday 9th March 2024. This is 12 weeks prior to the event and our advertised standard transfer window for international events. After this time, we regret that we simply cannot change entries and if you are in, you’re in. So if you don’t think you’re in this time around, please do ensure you use that transfer window and get your transfers in by the dates above. You can do that by logging into your RR account. 

EVENT ETHOS

Rat Race’s ethos has always been about inspiring folk to undertake challenges in awesome outdoor locations. This is not a formal race environment and there are no winners and losers. We do not award prizes for the fastest folk. We would like to see a team vibe, and everyone supporting each other to the finish on this event. We will not be recording any timings of individual participants, so if you wish to know your times, please record them yourselves

In delivering these unique challenges we prioritise factors such as safety, camaraderie, and environmental concerns. Respecting the wishes of landowners and environmental stakeholders with our route management and litter policies is vital in being able to bring folk together for this unique experience. In terms of safety, we are often operating routes in exposed and remote locations and putting in place challenges that require clear attention to be given to the directing staff and signage. At times, for the safety of all participants we may ask you to wait and regroup so we can escort you through a key section of the route as a group. As you may be waiting a little while, please ensure you have enough warm clothes with you at all times.

To reasonably balance all these factors, we emphasise that the event is not a formal race environment, rather it is a challenge in the great outdoors where great folk come together with a common purpose. Caring for fellow competitors, litter control, closing gates and taking care on road crossings are what the event is about, rather than being the fastest across the course.

Rat Race has invested heavily in adding GPS tracking to these event formats. This benefits challenges of this nature, adding a strand to our safety system so that we can pinpoint folk that are lost or off-course; and respond with as much accuracy as possible in an emergency. Our tracking platform is therefore primarily for our race and safety management. It is not a race timing system, however it has features we can seek to utilise on top of our safety features and to enhance the supporter experience. That is our commitment: An added safety function first, a spectator service second.

FINAL NOTE & CONTACT

Pre-trip Support and Contacting Us
Admin – For any admin questions, such as checking your payment status, if you wish to transfer or defer your entry or anything of that manner, please contact: events@ratrace.com. The Facebook group should not be used for anything of this manner.

Emails – Group emails are likely to come from ‘events@ratrace.com’. Please ensure that this is added to your contacts to avoid emails being hidden in junk or spam.

 

Medical office@trailmed.co.uk  should be contacted for medical-based advice or discussion on medical conditions in confidence 

Event Specific Qs – For any questions about Run Britannia itself, like the route, where we are staying, or if it’s possible to have a Crème Brule at Pit Stop 3 on day 24 because it’s your birthday, I am your main point of contact. You can reach me on James.campbell@ratrace.com.

Webinar / Q&As – We don’t want anyone to miss out. Being that we have runners from several regions signed up to this trip, we know that not everyone will be able to make the in-person meet up opportunities. We will look to host at least a couple of Webinar / Q&A sessions between now and the main event, so there will be opportunity to meet fellow runners and myself on those calls. Rat Race uses Zoom for these meets, more details on that to follow.

Facebook – We appreciate that Facebook is not for everyone, but it may be worth joining, even if it is just so that you can join the Run Britannia Facebook group HERE. As well as your fellow 2024 runners, this group includes all of the Test Pilot and 2023 completers, myself, several other crew and future years participants. With all of that knowledge, experience and enthusiasm in one place it can be an especially useful motivational tool and a wicked place to share training tips, kit Qs, or just to vent when it all seems a bit much! You can also use it if you want to try and find a Run Brit training buddy or two, be it for a one-off long run or if you’re looking to put together a group for a multi-day outing as a ‘Run Brit rehearsal’.

Please, please get involved with this group. The more you put into it, the more you will get out of it. Everyone will be keen to help you and excited for your journey.

Strava – Strava can help with motivation. Nothing like seeing everyone else clock up the miles to help give you that kick to get out of the door. You can join the Run Brit Strava Group HERE.

FINAL CHECK LIST 

Submitted no later than the 14th April 2024.

Form HERE.

Submitted no later than the 14th April 2024.

Form HERE.

We hope that this EEI serves to be a comprehensive event guide, supporting the emails, training materials and webinar resources you’ve already had thus far. From here, please do reach out and get in touch if anything is unclear or if you have any questions – or even if you just want to say hello and let us know how the training’s going!

We have just over 3 months to go. If there’s anything in particular you’d like our support to focus on between now and the big day, please let us know – we are here to support you.

Phew – that’s it!

See you in Cornwall!

James & the Rat Race Team

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