The Elvet Striders Grand Prix is an annual competition for club members that covers a range of different races. It is a fantastic opportunity to try event types that you haven’t done before. It is made up of 24 races in total in four general categories. They are:
Each category (jersey) comprises six races, and there are separate women’s and men’s competitions.
Green Jersey races are usually, but not-exclusively, short, fast road events over distances of around 5km or 10kms. They are usually all on road or hard surfaces but may occasionally include stretches of mixed terrain. The Pier to Pier is a good example of a mixed-terrain race that often finds itself in the GP. To get an idea of some typical green jersey GP races have a read of some old green jersey race reports.
Purple Jersey races are usually, but not exclusively, long road events from around half-marathon distance and above. They are usually all on road or hard surfaces but may occasionally include stretches of mixed terrain. An example of an endurance event that contains some mixed-terrain is the Northumberland Coastal Run. For examples of other typical purple jersey GP races over the years have a look at the old purple jersey race reports.
While all green or purple jersey races are possible in road shoes, the polka-dot jersey is unashamedly off-road. This jersey covers fell and off-road races of all distances. These races are great opportunities to dabble with the dark-side if you’ve ever been tempted, and being GP events, there’s a good chance a posse of your club-mates will be there too. Typical events include the shortish and beginner friendly Captain Cooks and Saltwell Harriers, through intermediate events such as the Hexhamshire Hobble and Simonside Fell Race, up to serious physical challenges of races such as the Swaledale Marathon and Sedbergh Hills. There’s something for everyone in fell racing; it’s not exclusive to the super-fit and super-lithe. Have a read through some old polka-dot jersey race reports to get a taste of what’s ahead.
The clue is in the name. The muddy jersey is Harrier League. Every Strider should try Harrier League at least once. You will get wet and you will get muddy. You’ll hate it and keep coming back for more. Lots and lots of background reading available in the muddy jersey race reports.
The overall winners.
How it works
As mentioned above the GP is made up of 24 races in four general categories: Cross-country (Harrier League), Fell and Trail (Off-Road), Short Road (or mixed-terrain), and Long Road (or mixed-terrain).
Each category comprises six races, and there are separate women’s and men’s competitions.
In each race the first Strider home gets 15 points, the second 14 points and so on. All Striders 15th and below get 1 point.
In the overall Grand Prix all 24 races count. In each category a runner’s best four from six count.
You can tell when a race report is for a GP event as it will always have a GP flag next to the title, and a jersey colour indicating the category.
Only official number swaps supported by the race organiser will be valid for the GP. Unofficial number swaps are neither recognised nor endorsed by the club.
Events chosen for the GP will always have a reasonable chance of members being able to get an entry. Events such as the Great North Run, which rely on the luck of the ballot, will not be chosen for the GP.