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WCR FAQS

 

WCR Trophy

The race

Welsh Castles Relay is an officially licensed / permitted race organised by Les Croupiers Running Club, a 20 stage road race for experienced runners from Caernarfon Castle to Cardiff with stages averaging over 10 miles in length (many hilly, especially the 'mountain stages'..).

2024 will be the 42nd anniversary of the race and the 40th running due to Covid-19 cancellations.

The race will take place over the weekend of 8th and 9th June 2024.

Clubs and teams who have previously taken part, applied to enter or expressed interest in doing so will be sent entry details by email.

If you are interested in taking part in 2024 please contact the Race Administrator on This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Categories

There are four categories:  open, veterans, ladies and business house.

All UK teams must be affiliated running or athletics clubs, apart from the business house teams.

Runners must be first claim for their club.

Normally the race is over-subscribed within the open category.

This means the WCR committee must take tough decisions and unfortunately turn some clubs away.

We do want to include as many as possible but health and safety factors and the volume of race traffic restrict us, and of course that must be our primary concern.

Ladies, veterans and business house categories are generally under-subscribed.

A strict race limit of 65 teams entering was applied in 2019 and will be reviewed every year.

For 2024 the committee has reduced the maximum number of teams to 60; for health, safety and environmental reasons.  If the race is over-subscribed there will be a competitive selection process.


Teams

A team requires at least 20 runners – one per stage – and reserves in case of any last minute pull outs due to injury etc.

No-one may run more than one stage**.

Teams can be single or mixed gender (with the obvious exception of the Ladies teams).

Business house runners should be current employees or their spouses/civil partners, sons or daughters.

**An affiliated club runner may run for their club’s team and also for their Business House team (if eligible as described above, but they cannot represent both on the same stage).

Teams must take part in official club vests only, or same team shirts for business house entries.


Entry fee

The entry fee for 2024 will be £690 for affiliated clubs and £850 business house teams. 

The fee is non refundable should a team subsequently withdraw after being accepted, so we strongly advise that the interest and availability of runners is checked before an application is made.

Unsuccessful teams will be refunded their entry fee.


Online registration

Teams will complete an online application giving the details of the team contacts; one application per team.

Competing teams will need to register their squad of runners online within a set time period - this will be advised to each Team Manager via email.

We ask that as many people are registered as possible so that the team has plenty of runners to draw upon as reserves.

No-one can run unless they have been registered in advance.

By submitting the registered runners, the Team Manager is agreeing to the disclaimer on the runners' behalf.  

The Team Managers will be required to submit their final team declaration by 20:00 on Friday 7th June 2024.

This will indicate which runners will be running each stage and failure to submit will result in the 'No Runner Declared' penalty being applied.

Amendments to individual stages will be possible at the start of the stage; any teams found to be making an excessive amount of changes will incur a time penalty.


T-shirts

The entry fee includes the option to order of 20 x t-shirts, however, if Team Managers decide to opt-out of ordering t-shirts the amount will be donated to charity in lieu (amount and charity to be advised).  When submitting the squad lists Team Managers will be required to order the size of t-shirts required (e.g.  5 x Small, 10 x Medium, 5 x Large), these will then be given to the teams at the Team Briefing on Saturday morning.

No spare shirts will be carried by the organisers. Additional t-shirts for Team Managers, supporters etc. can be ordered, these will be charged back at a fee to be confirmed.


Runners

Teams must field runners who can maintain at least 9 minute miles on hilly terrain and note that each stage has a time cut off, which is stringently applied.

There is a time check point approximately half way on each stage.

Runners not reaching the check points in the required time will be removed from the course, it is the responsibility of the runner’s team to pick up the runner from the course.

Any runner failing to follow the instruction to leave the course will be disqualified from that stage and the “No Runner Declared” penalty applied.

No roads are closed so runners must have previous experience of open road races on an un-supported basis. 

The race includes very exposed hilly sections so runners need to be prepared for adverse weather. 

Runners must take part at their own risk

Hydration Vests are allowed to be worn as long as the club vest is recognisable and the race number is clearly visible.


Age restrictions

Runners should be 18+ years and medically fit to take part.

A few shorter stages are suitable for 16-17 years+ (in accordance with UK Athletics rules).

The age of men for veteran category is 40+ years and for women 35+ years.


Role of Team Captain 

Teams taking part will need to appoint a Team Captain and ideally a Manager or Deputy to assist.

They are responsible for everything to do with the team’s participation and its runners, including all pre-race communication and administration.

Parts of the roles can be delegated to others in the team but the Team Captain carries responsibility overall and must attend the pre-race briefing in Caernarfon before the start of stage 1.

He/she must respond to email communications promptly.


Marshalling duties

Each team competing has marshalling duties on specific stages.

Honouring these duties is very important and the Team Captain is responsible for ensuring that all marshals are in place for the times required.

Bibs are provided.

Marshals are supported by teams of trained ‘flying marshals’ who add extra support on each stage, especially for the more difficult junctions and crossings.

Teams need to provide marshals that are pro-active and properly briefed by their Team Captains in advance of the race weekend.

Marshalling performance will form part of the race entry selection process.


Transport

The stage starts and finish points, and routes themselves, are mostly within small villages and towns, on road-side lay-bys and on narrow or winding roads.

Traffic congestion is a problem so to minimise this we expect teams to use people carriers and mini buses.

This is the best way to ensure runners arrive at their start points and are collected from their finish points on time.

It is wise to work out a schedule in advance and have a pool of drivers, fully briefed.


Accommodation

Teams are responsible for finding their own accommodation.

However there is free floor space with mats and shower facilities at Caernarfon leisure centre (Friday night) and Newtown High School allow free camping on their school fields (Saturday night).

The adjacent leisure centre provides changing facilities, showers and toilets for campers.

You’ll need to bring your own camping kit.

You may wish to search for other accommodation on a charged basis using www.visitwales.com / holiday-accommodation or other online accommodation search facilities or AirB&B. 

Teams staying in the leisure centre and/or camping should be respectful to other users/runners – being loud until the early hours is not appreciated.

Camping at Newtown High School
The site at Newtown is not an official campsite, it is the High School playing fields which we are kindly given the use of for WCR weekend.  There is plenty of room to pitch tents on the playing fields.  There is parking for campervans/motorhomes at the school but NOT on the playing fields.  There is no official booking arrangements and is available from 17.30 Saturday until 08.00 Sunday.  In terms of rules we would ask the following:
Keep noise levels down, not to disturb others.
Please take all your waste with you and dispose properly.
No dogs or other pets allowed.
No vehicles are allowed/parked on the playing fields.


First Aid

First aid is provided by Acute Medics who travel with the race for the entire duration of the weekend.


Charity

We don't organise this race for charitable purposes, but for the pure sport and enjoyment of running.

It is a competitive race and not a mass participation event.

If you wish to carry out any personal fundraising activities then please note that we do not hold street collection licences nor do we attract crowds of spectators as the race moves quickly from one place to another.


Race organisers 

Welsh Castles Relay relies on the hard work of a committed band of volunteers from Les Croupiers RC.  

For previous race results just scroll up to see the race results section where the results from 1983 to last year are available. 


 

Club Safety Guidelines

The following advice is intended to keep our runners SAFE at all times!
It is also essential that, whilst out running as a club, we are seen to be polite, responsible, set a good example & not put others at risk.
AT ALL TIMES BE SAFE BE SEEN! You can never be too visible! During the day, always wear bright or light-coloured clothing - fluorescent is good.
At night we would strongly recommend that people ALWAYS wear light-coloured clothing plus a REFLECTIVE (not just fluorescent) bib or sash.
Clip on flashers are a great way to be seen. NEVER ASSUME YOU'VE BEEN SEEN. Always be cautious with traffic.
We would like to remind people that they are responsible for their own safety and that they run at their own risk.