November 30, 2020

Cardiff University/Cardiff Half Marathon 2019 – Everything You Need to Know

The stage is set for a record field of 27,500 runners to create history at the 2019 Cardiff University/Cardiff Half Marathon next weekend.

Elite athletes from all corners of the globe will battle it out over the iconic 13.1 mile course before runners of all abilities take on their own personal challenges. Female runners are expected to make up the majority of participants for the first time in the event’s 16 year history, and to celebrate, inspiring women have been sharing their stories as part of the #WhyWeRun campaign.

Wales’ largest mass participation and charity fundraising event will spread a carnival atmosphere across Cardiff, and here is everything you need to know about what is happening over the weekend.

What time will it start?

The Cardiff Half Marathon takes place on Sunday 6th October, and the race will begin at 10am.

Organisers say the wheelchair race will start at 9.55am before the main race at 10am. Runners in white, green and red pens will cross the start line in the first wave before blue and yellow pens get underway in the second wave at 10.10am.

They are urging participants, especially those in the white, green and red pens, to allow plenty of time to arrive at the Event Village as late starters will not be permitted to take part.

The race will be staggered to ensure that all runners cross the start line as safely as possible.

What’s the route?

The iconic course remains unchanged for 2019. The route takes runners past the capital’s most iconic landmarks with beautiful scenery and historic buildings. The predominately flat and fast course makes it ideal for beginners and elites.

The race starts in the shadow of Cardiff Castle before runners head down past Cardiff City Stadium on the way to Penarth. The picturesque Penarth Marina is the next location before runners cross the barrage into the heart of Cardiff Bay. Participants run right through the heart of the Bay, taking in the Norwegian Church and Wales Millennium Centre.

The course then heads towards the north of the city and runners will complete a loop of Roath Park Lake before a grandstand finish down the Edward the VII Avenue finishing straight.

Where can I leave my baggage?

The baggage tents will be open at 8.30am. They are located on Museum Avenue and in the museum car park near the Event Village.

All runners are allowed to deposit one bag which must display your baggage label, which is a tear-off strip on the bottom of your race number. Please attach the label before your arrival.

Bags can be collected after the race upon receipt of your runner number. Only runners and staff will have access to this area which will be manned by security staff who may ask to check your bags. We suggest joining the bagging queue at 8.45am at the latest as bag checks will be in operation.

What if I forget to pick it up afterwards?

Items not collected after baggage closure will be held at the Event Information tent in the Event Village. The following day they will be taken to the Run 4 Wales offices.

Where is the Event Village?

The village will be set up on the lawns and car park on City Hall Lawns and is the perfect place to wait for your loved ones, or celebrate in style with mouthwatering street food, a bar and plenty of space to relax.

What else is going on?

The Cardiff University/Cardiff Half Marathon is more than 13.1 miles on a Sunday morning.

This year a jungle themed Cardiff University Festival of Running will get the weekend off to a roaring start on Saturday. With smiling faces, fancy dress, and (fingers crossed) a bright blue sky, the next generation of young runners will have the opportunity to take their first steps at a world class running event.

The mascot race kicks off proceedings at 11am with some of the country’s favourite furry friends before the youngest Cardiff Half competitors take part in the 50 metre Toddler Dash at 11.15am.

The atmosphere will then go up a gear for the 2.4km Family Fun Run which starts at 11.45am. There’s no pressure to record fast times or even run all the way round. Instead, dig out your best fancy dress, drag along the rest of your family and friends and enjoy the experience. There’ll be plenty to keep you going all the way round and with a vibrant atmosphere and loads of support from the crowd, you’ll be round the course in no time with a big beaming smile across your face. On completion of the race, each participant will receive a commemorative t-shirt and medal.

For more information, head over to https://www.cardiffhalfmarathon.co.uk/take-part/cardiff-university-festival-of-running/.

Are there toilets on the route and at the start?

There are toilets at the Event Village and on the way to the start, including on King Edward VII Avenue, outside the Law Courts, on Boulevard de Nantes, and near the starting pens

There are several toilet stops on the course within the first mile. Don’t be tempted to urinate in the street – this will result in disqualification and a ban from the event in future.

Will there be drinks available on the way round?

Brecon Carreg water stations will be available at 3, 6, 9 and 11 miles. Please dispose of your water bottles in the recycling bins after each water station and throughout the course.

Lucozade Sport Energy Drinks will be available at mile 9.

On-Course Nutrition

Energy Gels (HIGH 5 Aqua Orange) will be available at mile 6.

Lucozade Sport Energy Drinks will be available at mile 9.

Please dispose of bottles and energy gel packets in the recycling bins located after each energy station and throughout the course.

Hydration Tips

Brecon Carreg explain why it’s important for everyone and vital for athletes. Dehydration is an excessive loss of body water and hydration means replacing that water and setting things right again. This is of course putting it in a very straightforward way but at Brecon Carreg we like to keep things nice and simple. Just like our pure and natural mineral water.

Staying hydrated with enough water in our bodies to keep them functioning as they should, is important for everyone. But when you’re exercising it’s absolutely vital, because you’re sweating more than usual and losing more water than you normally would.

Where can I park on race day?

A park and walk facility has been provided at the Cardiff City Football Stadium car park on Leckwith Road, Cardiff, CF11 8AZ. There will be a limited number of on the day spaces reserved, but organisers are encouraging runners to car share or travel by bike.

We advise all runners to explore all parking options within the city at www.en.parkopedia.co.uk/parking/cardiff or www.cardiff.gov.uk, as well as road-side parking where safe and secure.

Will there be road closures?

On race day (Sunday 6th October) road closures will be in operation from as early as 4am on Castle Street. For full details on road closures, click here to see detailed, interactive and localised maps.

For information about bus diversions, head over to www.cardiffbus.com.

Any other travel advice?

With so many participants and spectators travelling to Cardiff over the race weekend, one of the most reliable, stress-free and cost effective ways to travel to Cardiff and avoid congestion is by travelling by train in advance of race day.

If you are planning to travel on race day, please check with your local train provider whether a train allows you enough time to arrive at the race before the start at 10am and be aware that early Sunday morning services can be extremely limited.

Can I run with headphones in?

The organisers advise against running with headphones, as they will be unable to hear marshals should an emergency vehicle need to makes it way onto the course.

Where is the best place to watch?

Get closer than ever and cheer on your family and friends down the final stretch of their 13.1 mile journey.

Last year a new spectator zone was introduced on Corbett Road, giving spectators a unique opportunity to experience the unrivalled Cardiff Half atmosphere and roaring crowds cheering on the runners as they approach their grandstand finale on King Edward VII Avenue.

Our finish line experience has improved too, with new tiered standing terraces on the sideline, giving more spectators than ever a fantastic view over their loved ones crossing the line. Supporters are being urged to check out this Venue Map to ensure they can access the finish line.

There will be live music and PA throughout King Edward VII Avenue, adding to the vibrancy and atmosphere of the final straight along with big screens so spectators can watch the live BBC Wales coverage and immerse themselves in the elite race experience.

Benefit from improved access, more signage and spectator crossing points around the Civic Centre, giving everyone the opportunity to secure their vantage point.

  1. If you want to catch them again after the start

If you are there giving moral support at the start, and then want to catch them again later head across the city centre and watch them at the end of Lloyd George Avenue as they turn into Tyndall Street. This will be just before they hit the seven mile mark, but you only have to stroll for about half a mile.

  1. Catching them on a couple of quieter spots

If you set yourself up on Penarth Road, near the Grangetown station, you will catch them shortly after the start, but far enough in so that they won’t be too bunched up and you may not be able to spot them in the crowd.

  1. For a great photo opportunity

Cardiff is a pretty spectacular city, but if you head to Cardiff Bay you will be able to get a great landscape as the runners make their way across the Cardiff Bay Barrage. Lots of runners and a nice sea view, but it will be a bit like Where’s Wally trying to sport your loved one.

  1. For a great individual photo opportunity

Head for between the five and six mile point, as the runners make their way through Cardiff Bay, which will offer the Norwegian Church, The Senedd and the Wales Millennium Centre to have in the background.

  1. One spot, two viewings

If you plant yourself at end of Ninian Road you will be able to watch them as they start and finish their lap of Roath Park Lake. Plus this is near the end and they will going slower, easier to take a snap of them!

  1. Start, halfway and the finish

If you want to see your runner start the race and finish and would like to catch them somewhere in between then you are in luck. The organisers have the route heading back past town between the seven and eight mile marks. So, you wave them off by the castle, head across the city to West Grove or Richmond Road, and after you have given your moral support, you can head back across town to the finish line.

Is there a Cardiff Half Marathon App?

Yes. It allows spectators to live track their loved ones with timing points at 5, 10, 15 and 20k as well as inspect drink and energy stations around the route – and see details about the location and acts at our 15 entertainment points.

You can also follow the elite race and check out other event information. It’s available on Apple and Android and you can find out more here.

Where will I get my commemorative T-shirt?

The 2019 Cardiff University/Cardiff Half Marathon t-shirt will be revealed on Monday.

After finishing the race please continue moving through the finish line and post-finish area to collect your commemorative items (medal, water, goody bags and bananas) to avoid congestion. Medical staff will be on hand for anyone who feels unwell or needs medical attention. After the finish line all runners will receive a t-shirt, medal, goody bag, water, banana and other items.

Your goody bag, which contains finisher t-shirts available between XS and 3XL sizes will be given out to the ratio of sizes requested at point of entry, therefore we cannot guarantee that your requested size will be available if others who finish ahead of you change their mind on the day. Organisers kindly ask all participants to collect the size they requested.

Time to celebrate

After expending all your energy around 13.1 miles, refueling will no doubt be one of the first things on your mind, and whether you head straight to the bar for a celebratory drink, or you’re after something a little more nutritional, the Cardiff Half has got all angles covered for peckish spectators and ravenous runners!

Brains are offering a FREE celebratory drink and 25% off food in Brains pubs in Wales!

Brains have also set-up a number of Brains Spectator Hubs along the route which include Elevens, The Dock, Salt, Pear Tree, Blackweir Tavern and Crwys where the team will be giving out free flags and goodies to supporters to create the best possible atmosphere for the runners.