Runners Caroline and Maisie finish in a dead heat in The Kings Head Canter

Caroline Hoyte and Maisie Trafford
Caroline Hoyte and Maisie Trafford

The Kings Head Canter, a friendly rural road race over a point to point village course, took place this year in scorching temperatures.

But times for the race which started in Chiddingly and finished in East Hoathly broke route records.

Each year on August Bank Holiday Monday about 200 runners enjoy the great atmosphere of this well-organised event, complete with barbecue and drinks at the finish. This was the twenty second running of the race which takes place over an SEAA measured 4,980 undulating course with a climb of 20 metres. For 2019 the race was again part of the Harvey Curtis Sussex Road Race Challenge.

This year there were 206 finishers in all categories. In the mens’ race, first place was taken by Kevin Moore from Brighton and Hove Athletic Club with a new course record of 14.58. Ladies’ winners were Caroline Hoyte and Maisie Trafford from Arena 80 in a dead heat and a joint time of 18.03.

The first Over 40 Age Graded Winner was James Skinner from Haywards Heath Harriers with a time of 16.12 resulting in a percentage age grade of 89%.

A small contingent from the Uckfield Runners took part with 74 year old Pete Wilkes being joined by his 12 year old granddaughter Erin Fordham.

There was also a Village Team Event. This was a three person team competition for people who either live, work or play in East Hoathly. Teams can be made up from a street, club or business, or simply be a group of local friends.

No matter what their age, say organisers, the results are calculated using Racemaster 98 Age Graded percentages.

The Kings Head Canter 5k is organised by the East Hoathly and Halland Carnival Society and directed by Stuart Mills. It is sponsored by the 1648 Brewing Company and The Jog Shop.

Jog Shop vouchers for £50, £40 and £30 were presented to the first three mens’ and ladies’ finishers and over 40 graded finishers.

To the evident relief of all runners, the Kings Head pub, East Hoathly provided a free pint or a soft drink to everyone who finished the gruelling race. Proceeds from the Kings Head Canter 5K go towards East Hoathly’s spectacular charity fundraising carnival and bonfire which takes place in November each year.