Mud Runner Classic, the 10km off road run at Eastnor Castle, took place on Sunday 16th October and even in the current dry conditions the muddy swamps were numerous and very thick! 

There was also a Junior race of 5 km for children aged 5-15 years which was a tough but fun course filled with challenging mud troughs and obstacles.  200 children took part this year and appeared to love every minute of it!

The main race had a record number of entries and the atmosphere was fantastic with a large number of spectators to cheer the runners around the course.  What inspired many of the runners was the amazing achievement of the first wheelchair competitor for Mud Runner.   Rick Rodger’s, from South East London, is a disabled athlete who showed how a team of determined people and an off road wheelchair (The Mountain Trike) can overcome just about any obstacle! 

Rick described the day as a blur of adrenalin fuelled madness!  Accompanied by the wheelchair designer Ed Elias and a team of his friends they put the Mountain Trike through its toughest test to date and it survived!  Rick said that the highlight of the day was coming down the river bed with everyone cheering on the banks as the finish line came into view (finish time was 3:39:46). Ed is also looking for more people willing to compete in future Mud Runner events on the Mountain Trike.

Men’s Results     Female Results
James Bingham – 55:46   Roz Viner        – 1:06:59
John Pullen    –  55:49   Niki Morgan   –  1:08:20
Colin Brearly   –  57:54   Holly Blount    –  1:09:17

Junior Boys Results    Junior Girls Results
James Southall      – 19:43   Sophie Beckingham  – 23:12
Joshua Matthews –  20:07   Hattie Barnett          –  24:44
Jacob Payne         –  21:44   Briony Bishop           –  25:38

For further information:

Mud Bath

D3 Active organised a second Mud Runner event around Eastnor last weekend.  It is firmly placed on the running calendar, though there was no participation from my family members!  The sun was shining but it didn’t affect the seriously muddy conditions on the tracks.  The 10km off road run across the estate uses many of the driving tracks that Land Rover use to test their vehicles on, all of which provide a tough and challenging run as well as a generous amount of thick deep mud and large troughs of muddy water!

The atmosphere of the race was, as always, high spirited, sociable and fun. There was double the number of entries this year, with over 1000 runners, as the event grows in popularity due to its distinctly challenging and challenging terrain!  The organisers this year also built a giant steam bath (full of bubbles!) for the racers to de-mud themselves and warm up.  It was greatly appreciated by many and adding the camaraderie and uniqueness of the event.

All the feedback so far has been very positive with runners finding it very demanding, gruelling, tough on the legs but immense fun.

Second place Matt James said “The organisation of Mud Runner is what sets it apart and the atmosphere is brilliant.  It feels like you’re getting a three course meal not the normal two courses!”

Second female runner, Elsa Knoertzer said “Concentrating on which part of the mud pit to step into and how not to swallow too much mud in the process made me forget the pain, as did the sense of comradeship amongst competitors.” 

The next two Mud Runner events at Eastnor in the series are:
Icebreaker – Winter Duathlon – February 6th 2011
Mud Runner Oblivion – May 8th 2011

See you then.    JH-B    22nd October 2010

Eastnor is a great place for outdoor action with woods, hidden valleys, hills and open parkland inviting the adventurous and energetic to organised events. We have had mountain bike races and triathlons as well as local cadet forces and others training on our land. The first major outdoor event was probably a Scout Jamboree in 1937, which was attended by Lord Baden Powell himself and is commemorated by a grove of oaks planted in the Park.

Two weeks ago, our colleagues from D3 held the first Eastnor Mud Runner challenge, a gruelling 6 mile race in a winding and heavily undulating course through the estate. We knew off-road driving in the mud worked for Land Rover: would it also appeal to athletes? A muddy face on the leaflets and posters seemed to have remarkable appeal, and by the big day we had over 300 entries.

That was all good news. The organisation was good and everyone turned up at the right place. But there was a concern, after a month without rain, that there would not be enough mud and we would disappoint our contestants. In the event, all went well.

The springs in the woods were still working and a final section across a shallow part of the lake ensured that there was lots of mud to be hosed off afterwards when the contestants finished in the castle courtyard.

A local team won more prizes than the rest, and we are looking forward to hosting another event like this next autumn on 17th October 2010 …. and possibly one earlier if we can.

Start training NOW if you are interested!                 JH-B

Mud Runner:  Eastnor Castle 11 October 2009

Cross country runners with a competitive spirit who don’t mind getting muddy are being offered the chance to run in a new race at Eastnor Castle on Sunday 11th October.

For the very first time Land Rover Experience have generously opened the tracks that are used to develop and test the worlds best all terrain vehicles for Mud Runner.  This is a unique chance for intrepid athletes looking for the ultimate challenge, the course is 6ish arduous cross country miles around the Eastnor Estate over a variety of terrain and conditions from rolling grassland to mud, wet mud and sticky mud.  The course includes hills, water filled pits, muddy banks and more mud, runners will ultimately get very wet!

David Littlewood, Assistant General Manager for Eastnor Castle said; “We are really excited about Mud Runner which is a new event at Eastnor, that will offer a unique opportunity for cross country runners to run on tracks designed for vehicles, but at the same time the chance to explore hidden areas within the Eastnor Estate albeit muddy ones!  We are getting lots of interest and it is also a great opportunity for competitors to run for their chosen charity”.

One of the competitors signed up is local man Kester Wilkinson from Pixley, Nr Nr Ledbury who is no stranger to adventure races and has taken part in some of the world’s toughest challenges.  From a 65mile run to France – to the Marathon Des Sables, a 150 mile staged race through the Sahara desert he is looking forward to taking part in Mud Runner and is hoping that the mud will slow up some of the faster runners and for once he won’t be at the back.  He says “I am keen to take part in this muddy race although stupid, it should be a lot of fun and a good thrash through a long muddy puddle”. Kester will be joined by his wife Zinnia for the run and will be raising money for the Hereford Haven charity.

More information can be obtained from the website


We have an exciting new event to tell you about which takes place on Sunday 11th October 2009 on the Eastnor Castle Estate.   Mudrunner is an off road run over a variety of terrain and conditions from rolling grassland (well a little bit anyway) to mud, wet mud and sticky mud. The course includes hills, waterfilled pits, muddy banks and did we mention mud. You will get very wet! 6ish arduous country miles around the Eastnor Estate using the same tracks that Land Rovers have been tested and developed on.


The course will be marked and we will let you know the halfway point, other than that it’s 6ish miles in length and brilliant fun.  In addition to the prizes for the first five individual finishers in a variety of categories there are also prizes for the fastest teams of three.

The first two teams to enter are from the Eastnor Castle Estate with the talented all male team “Rocket Ron’s Allstars”  (Simon Foster, David Littlewood and Nick Robinson) taking on the all female team “Dickie’s Delight” (Sarah Littlewood, Sarah Bullock and Caroline Brazington).

As Simon Foster (Castle Manager) explains “this event provides a great opportunity for us to compete amongst the office and also develop some (hopefully) friendly rivalry and teambuilding”     SB