Tag Archives: FlaminGo 10K

FlaminGO!, Kirby Misperton, Yorkshire, Saturday, March 11, 2017


Stephen Jackson


This was a race nestled right in the middle of marathon training which meant that there had been no opportunity to taper. Michael Littlewood, my travel companion for the day was 80 miles deep into a 100 mile week and I wasn’t too far behind.

That said, I felt pretty good, and was ready to race. It was nice to lace the racing flats up following a long stretch of fairly intense training.

The course is a two loop affair, through the theme park and the zoo and around the golf course. Approximately 2 miles of the 6 were through muddy fields, the rest was tarmac – most of it was pretty flat.

The start was tentative as we all waited for the eventual winner, Tristan Learoyd, to head up the field and lead us all out towards the golf course. By 1km there was a group of 3/4 runners just off the lead and the pace was brisk before we hit the mud, which slowed us all up.

By half way I knew I had a good chance of placing in the top 3 so the exercise was more to do with ‘racing’ those around me than PB chasing. The grass sections were too muddy for the course to translate into an overall personal best so I didn’t even bother looking at my watch, I just ran to feel, trying to keep up with those around me.

As we left the golf course for the second time I was in second place, closely followed by James Fahey from North York Moors AC who unfortunately (for him) slipped just as we hit the tarmac again. After checking he was ok, I took advantage of this and put in a little surge, creating a gap of about about 100m between us, which I was able to stretch out over the last mile.

In the end it was a great day out, 2nd place and a pretty solid time. Michael also came in the top 10 finishers (8th) and joined me for a quick cool down before the presentation.

I’d recommend the race; it’s not on the doorstep but could be combined with a family day out. The course is interesting and there’s a chance to win a family pass for the park.





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FlaminGo 10K, Kirby Misperton, Malton, North Yorkshire, Saturday, March 5, 2016

Andrew Davies

Not a Flamingo in sight.

The hail started as we drove up Sutton Bank and I knew we were in for a dramatic day. We were on our way to Flamingo Land. I’d dragged the family out of bed at 6:30am to get there for 9:30am. They were not happy. The zoo was open but none of the major rides would be (until the next week).

I was heading for the second, and my first, running of FlaminGo 10k. In aid of the Udzungwa Forest Project, apparently. Yes, it’s a real place. In Tanzania.

This race wouldn’t have appeared on my radar but we were on our way to meet our friends, Sarah and Jamie, who own a caravan in the park and suggested I enter. I’m glad they did. They’re both quite fit, Sarah is a swimmer and Jamie loves cycling. He’s a pretty fast parkrunner and might have the edge on me over 10k.

We met in the car park and they snook Vicki and Annabelle in to Flamingo Land. Then we warmed up with the other 250 runners. The weather couldn’t decide between freezing hail, sideways rain or bright sunshine.

There was more club shirts than I expected. I was the only Strider but there was New Marske Harriers, Wallsend Harriers, Easingwold Running Club, Redcar Running Club and Tyne Bridge Harriers amongst more Southern clubs.

There was a loud and excitable radio-DJ-style announcer on the mic, calling the tunes and organising the whole event. We set off at 10am on the dot.

The race was 2 identical laps that snaked through the park and camp site and around the outside of a ridiculously muddy golf course. There was a couple of small rises but other than that it was flat. It was the most twisty 10k I’ve ever run and the muddy golf course slowed everyone down. Not as badly as you guys doing Alnwick XC I imagine.

I got around in 48:26 and beat my friend Jamie by a couple of minutes, which is all that really matters.

The race was won by Tristan Learoyd of New Marske Harriers who seems to win a lot races I enter. He did it in 35:14. First woman was, with a time of 40:28, was Kay Neesam also of New Marske Harriers.

Time for the cleanup.

Runners were allowed free entry to the park but they were generally too wet and muddy to really make the most of it. Luckily we cleaned up in Sarah’s caravan and had the afternoon in the park. The rhinos and giraffes were impressive but there was only a couple of small rides open for the kids.

It was a fun 10k with novel scenery. I’ll probably do it again next year but might not drag the family along. Maybe I could drag some other Striders?

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