Welsh Castles Relay 2017 - FAQS


The race

Welsh Castles Relay is an officially licenced / permitted race organised by Les Croupiers RC.  It’s a 20 stage road race for experienced runners from Caernarfon Castle to Cardiff Castle.   

Race dates

2017 will be the 35th anniversary of the race and it takes place on 10-11 June.

Applications were taken in between 9 January and 8 March. Selection of teams has now taken place.


There are four categories:  open, veterans, ladies and business house.   All UK teams must be affiliated athletics clubs, with the exception of the business house teams. Runners must be first claim for your club.

Each year the race is over-subscribed within the open category, so the WCR committee has to take tough decisions and sometimes unfortunately turn some clubs away.  We do want to include as many as possible but health and safety factors restrict us, and of course that must be our primary concern.  Ladies, veterans and business house categories are generally under-subscribed. 


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

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.


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, 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.


Teams must field runners who can maintain no slower than 9 minute miles on hilly terrain and note that each stage has a time cut off, which is stringently applied.    

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

The race includes very hilly sections, often on exposed mountain areas so runners need to be prepared for adverse weather. 

Runners must take part at their own risk.

Team captains

Teams taking part will need to appoint a Team Captain and a Team Deputy/Manager.   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.


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. 


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.

Other accommodation can be found on a charged basis from Visit Wales site. www.visitwales.com/holiday-accommodation

First Aid

First aid is provided by British Red Cross and travels with the race for the entire duration of the weekend.  

Online registration

If selected to take part, the Team Captain must ensure that the squad of runners is registered online within the time period set.   The squad consists of any runner who might be called upon to run on the day (including the reserves).  No-one can run unless they have been registered on line in advance and their signed disclaimer form received.  Deadline for this information is set within third week of May.

Race organisers / Contact Us

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

The core workers are:

John Griffin                        Race Director

Phil Cook                            Race Director

Amanda Thompson          Race Administrator         

Mike Davies                       Marshals & Officials Coordinator

Jeff Aston                           Referee / Results

John Upstone                    Online Registration / Results        www.welshcastlesrelay.org.uk 

Dave Hodges                     Sponsorship