Hardy Half Marathon
14th May 2023
A Brand New Family Orientated Running Event and Weekend
in Dorset's County Town of Dorchester
We're excited to announce that Dorchester will be hosting a new trail running event next year, to raise money for local good causes.
On 14th May 2023, the inaugural "Hardy Half" will be a half marathon distance trail race across farmland in a loop of the iconic Hardy Monument. The start and finish will be at a designated event village at Dorchester Rugby Club. The weekend will include family orientated events and activities to get everyone involved.
The race is a joint venture between Dorchester RIOT running club, Dorchester Lions, Dorchester Rugby Football Club and Dorchester Casterbridge Rotary Club. All the money raised will go to local charities and our main charity partner, Farming Community Network. We hope this event will be a regular in the running and fund-raising calendar for years to come.
The Farming Community Network is a national network of local volunteers who provide emotional support for farmers and their families in times of need. Farming is a vital part of the Dorset landscape - both visually and economically - and we're proud to be supporting an organisation that promotes improving the wellbeing of such a vital community.
We're encouraging runners of all abilities and experience to take part, with a generous cut off time, plenty of aid stations and trophies for the winners in various categories.
About the route….
Running through a landscape immortalised by the famous writer Thomas Hardy, the inaugural Hardy Half takes you on tour of this fantastic area of Dorset countryside. The majority of the course is trail with some challenging terrain and around 1400 feet of elevation to climb. The road sections will be on closed roads. During the run you will pass through the picturesque village of Martinstown, circle a monument dedicated to another famous Hardy, Vice Admiral Sir Thomas Hardy, a man made famous for being at the side of Nelson at the point of his untimely death on HMS Victory at the battle of Trafalger. The route heads down into Hells Bottom, appropriately named as you then turn to climb back towards Dorchester. Finally you will climb the western side of Britain's largest Iron Age fort, Maiden Castle, before finishing back at the rugby club for a well earned refreshment or two.