Centurion Running

North Downs Way 100®

5 Aug 2017

Course Records

Ed Catmur (M)



Debbie Martin-Consani (F)



What is the date for 2017 and when do Entries for Open? 

Entries for the 2017 event will open Saturday 1st October 2016 at 1000. Race Date is Saturday 5th to Sunday 6th August 2017. 

How tough is the course? 

The course has 9930 feet of climb/ gain and a similar level of descent. Roughly translated both routes vary between undulating and hilly. There are no ascents lasting more than a few minutes except for Box Hill, however sections of the course are technical and make for hard running. There are some short sections of stairs involving climbs or descents from the steepest points. In terms of terrain, roughly 80% of the course is on trail and around 20% on the road. If it is wet in the lead up to the race or on race weekend itself, some sections will become muddy and require due care and attention. Expect a real mixture underfoot including road, pavement, soft woodland trail, mud, sand and more hard packed chalk trail. The scenery on some sections of the North Downs Way is really quite stunning. There are individual sections particularly early on that show off some of the best of the English Countryside. Overall, the extremely varied, sometimes difficult underfoot conditions as well as the number of sharp turns and short and steep climbs and descents make for slow going in places and push runners to lean on many different skillsets. Road running, crushed gravel, rocky trail and soft sand trail feature alongside smooth and rolling non-technical single/ double track running.

What do I get for my entry fee? 

Principally you get a fully supported race including:

13 fully stocked aid stations

A marked course. 

Full Medical Support in the form of dedicated race ambulances and roving vehicles as well as static first aid teams

Live timings throughout race weekend for friends and family to follow you online

Finisher t-shirt

Finishers Buckle

Is there a limit to the number of entries/ Can I enter on race day/ Is there a waiting list?

Yes there are 300 places only. There will be no entries on the day under any circumstances. The race will be limited to the first 300 entrants. A waitlist will be in operation should the event fill up.

Is there a minimum qualification standard to achieve before I can enter?

In order to start the race, you must have completed a minimum of a 50 mile distance race within 15hrs, between 1st January 2013 and 31st July 2016. As organisers, we reserve the right to refuse anybody entry who does not meet this standard. Unqualified runners may enter but should they not complete a qualifer within the requisite time frame, they will not be permitted to start. There are further conditions to what may be used as a qualifier. 

Click here to read more about what counts as a qualifier.  

Is there mandatory gear to carry on race day?

Yes. There will be kit checks prior, during and after the race. Runners must carry the following mandatory equipment at all times. A time penalty of one hour will be imposed for any item found to be missing at any point on course. Please refer to this page for explanations on the inclusion of the below items. 

There are many options regards kit for fulfilling these requirements and those of other events. We stock what we believe to be the best options at our online store available by clicking here under the Mandatory Gear Section. Please ask us if you have any questions.

  • Fully Charged Mobile Phone including the numbers for the Race Medic and Race Director (on the number you have given at registration)
  • Water Bottles/Bladder capable of carrying a minimum of 1 litre.
  • Survival Blanket: 1.4m x 2m minimum
  • Waterproof Jacket: Gore-tex or similar, minimum 10000mm+ & must have sealed seams. 
  • Whistle
  • Headtorch or Primary Light Source Minimum 75 lumens (From Knockholt Pound Only)
  • Back Up Light source - Minimum 25 Lumens (From Knockholt Pound Only)
  • Base layer or fleece top - This must be carried separately from the start and kept dry, for use only in an emergency. Starting in 2 layers is not a substitute.
  • The race is cupless which means you must bring a cup with you. Soft cups are available at the store here. Alternatively, whatever fluid you want to take on at an aid station must be received in to the bottle or bladder you are carrying.
  • The race is cupless which means you must bring a cup with you. Soft cups are available at the store here

Strongly recommended but not mandatory:  

  • Route Map - Should be a hard copy that you are able to navigate from and not a map on your phone
  • Compass - This should be a separate physical compass and not electronic/ on your phone. 

Are there any road crossings or gates/ stiles to negotiate? 

Absolutely yes. Whilst the North Downs Way is predominantly trail, some of it is on road. There are sections of the course where you will be running along both single and double lane carriage ways. The majority of these are very quiet country roads, however the trail does appear at busy road junctions, at some points abruptly and therefore you must be alert at all times. The busiest junctions will be signed but NOT marshalled. Runners pass along the course entirely at their own risk. Much of the NDW is on private land and as a result there are gates and stiles to negotiate throughout the length of the course. All gates must be closed properly after you make your way through. 

Will there be live updates during the race for friends and family to follow? 

There will be a live webcast during the event. Live times will be published as runners come through each aid station and photos and videos uploaded to the site. Twitter updates will also be going out across the weekend. A link to the live site will appear on the homepage in the week leading up to the race. 

How many aid stations are there?

A full aid station list is available here.

There will be a minimum of 14 aid stations including the finish.

How do I get to the start?

The registration is at Polycarps Primary School which is a 2 minute walk from Farnham station. The full address is St Polycarp’s Catholic Primary School, Waverley Lane, Farnham, Surrey, GU9 8BQ. Runners will be walked down to the start from there. 

Where is the finish?

The finish is at the Julie Rose Stadium in Ashford. Full address: Julie Rose Stadium, Willesborough Rd, Ashford, TN24 9QX.

Where should I park?

For runners of both distances the best option for parking at the start is Farnham Station Car Park. There is a weekend tariff covering Friday 12pm to Sunday 8pm for a total cost of £7. There is some limited free parking in the roads surrounding the school. There will be no parking at the school itself. 

There is free parking at the stadium in Ashford.

What facilities are there at the Start/ Finish? 

Start: Toilets, Water, Indoor/ covered area, Pop-Up Centurion Running Store.
Finish: Free On Site Parking, Toilets, Free Hot Food and Drinks (Runners only and includes vegetarian option), Sleeping is possible in the indoor track.
There are NO sleeping facilities at the start.

Is there a Shuttle Bus from the Finish back to the Start?

There will be a shuttle bus operating from the Julie Rose Stadium back to Farnham Station, departing at 12:15pm on Sunday 7th August. You may purchase shuttle tickets during your registration or by clicking here. Tickets cost £25 plus a small admin fee taken by the registration company. 

What time does the race start?

You must register within the times listed on the schedule tab. Your race number will not be posted to you before race day, you must collect if from registration. Start times are also on the schedule page.

Are pacers allowed?

Pacers are permitted from the 50 mile point, but only one pacer can travel with a runner at any time. Pacers must travel on foot only. Handovers are permitted. Pacers may NOT join runners anywhere other than areas deemed 'crew access permitted'.

Are crews allowed?

Yes. If you want to have your crew, friends or family meet you you may have them do so but only at the points listed on the crew page here.

Our race permits and the future of the race depend on our positive interaction with the environment and communities through which we run.  Any runner found to have crew violating this will be subject to the rule violation procedure.

Do I need a different drop bag for each aid station?

Yes. Runners need to leave a different drop bag for each aid station, each bag will be transported to the aid station listed and then the finish only. The exception is your finish line bag which will go directly from the start to the finish.

How big can my drop bags be?

Maximum size is 30cm x 20cm x 20cm or the size of a shoe box/ small backpack/ drawstring bag. Your finish line bag can be bigger than this. 

When can I pick my drop bags up?

Your drop bags will be taken to the finish for latest, 12 noon on the Sunday, they may be available before but this cannot be guaranteed. They must be collected at 12 noon from the finish otherwise they will be disposed of after that time.  

Will I need a map?

Carrying a map is not mandatory but it is strongly recommended. We recommend the Harveys Map which is concise, easy to read and waterproof at a discounted rate here.

Will there be toilets at the start/ finish or on the race route? 

There will be toilets at the start and at the finish line and further toilets at Reigate Hill, Knockholt, Detling and Dunn Street aid stations.

What are the prizes/ awards?

All finishers will receive a medal, a technical finishers shirt and a buckle. Finishers in under 24 hours will receive a '100 miles - One Day' Buckle. All finishers between 24 and 30 hours will receive a '100 mile - Finisher' buckle. The male and female winners will take home first place prizes, there will be no separate vet category prizes.

What happens if I need to drop out?

If you need to drop out of the race, it is your responsibility to get back to where you need to get to but we will endeavor to help you as much as we can. If you have to drop please do so only at an aid station. Please inform the aid station captain on arrival that you intend to drop and whether you need assistance. You will be then be asked to hand in your bib number. If you need to drop out away from an aid station you must phone the race director immediately on the number provided at check in. If you drop at an aid station, the Aid Station Captains will inform you if it is possible to get transport to the finish or public transport. There is a sweeper bus, however it may be that you have to wait some considerable time so please be patient with the volunteers. The bus travels with the cut offs.

What food and drink will there be on route?

All aid stations will have a full selection of the usual aid station fayre and a whole lot more. At a minimum you will be able to pick up Water, Coke, Gels, Chocolate, Crisps, Nuts Fruit, Sandwiches/ Wraps and other sweet and savoury snacks. All aid stations from Knockholt onwards will have hot drinks including tea and coffee. There will be hot food available at Knockholt, Detling and the finish line.

What level of medical support can I expect?

Medical support is of paramount importance to us. Throughout the event there will be two ambulances on course, which will travel, one with the main group of runners and a second towards the back of the pack. There will also be a fixed medical team on hand at the finish line. Individual first aiders/ medical volunteers will also be present at some aid stations. Contact numbers for the medical team will be available at registration. They will be contactable round the clock for the duration of the race.

I need to withdraw, what is the refund/ transfer policy?

Withdrawals up to 4 weeks prior to race day are eligible for a 70% refund. Withdrawals after that time will not be refunded for any reason as all race day costs have been incurred by that stage and you will not be replaced. There are no deferals or transfers to alternative/ later events. You must acknowledge that you understand and agree to this policy during the registration process. 

If you do not agree with the refund policy please do not enter the event. 

What happens if the event is cancelled or abandoned?

The organisers reserve the right to modify, at any time, the course or aid station locations listed on the course. 

In the case of severe/ extreme weather conditions including but not limited to flooding after the event start, the organisers reserve the right to abandon the event at any time.

No refunds will be offered in that situation but we will always look for the best all around alternative. If the event cannot take place for reasons out of the control of the organisers including but not limited to flooding, severe weather or denial of access to the original course (foot and mouth outbreak for example), the organisers reserve the right to postpone the event to a later date and all entries will be carried forward to the new date. Refunds may not be offered under these circumstances. If the event is cancelled for reasons which require the event to be postponed indefinitely, the organisers reserve the right to retain all entry fees against costs incurred. 

Is the race a qualifier for UTMB or Western States?

The race is an official qualifier for UTMB and Western States.

How do I get in touch?

Please email us at [email protected] for any questions at all.

Is there any recommended reading?

The national trail guides are excellent and you can purchase them easily online. They contain maps of the entire route and accurate route descriptions if you would like or are able to recce the route prior to race day.