Find history and harmony in our epic Northamptonshire ultras

I don’t usually like to start a post asking people to sign-up to two of the most picturesque, fun and challenging ultra marathons around by talking about history – but bear with me.

As some of you may know, Northamptonshire formed a central part of the Wars of the Roses in the mid- to late 1400s.

Indeed, the county’s crest symbol of a rose commemorates its major role in those conflicts. It bears the motto, ‘Rose Concordia Signum’ meaning ‘The Rose – Emblem of Harmony’.

I’ve always felt like ultra running is somewhere you can find harmony, an inner peace that can change your life, and our two big spring and early summer events in Northamptonshire will certainly help you do just that.

Rose of the Shires

The county is affectionately known as the Rose of the Shires because of that history I just mentioned, and our flagship, 54-mile romp through the area takes in name from that.

Featuring around three-quarters trails with the rest being roads, the Rose of the Shires Ultra starts and finishes at Brixworth Country Park and passes through two stunning country parks, Salcey Forest, along the Grand Union Canal and into 21 pretty villages and towns.

The route winds its way along parts of the Nene Way, the Midshires Way and the Northampton Round.

Taking place on Saturday, April 6, there is still time to enter – but you’d better get your training shoes on fast.

If you like the sound of that race, and will excuse me swapping over my race director and history buff hats once more, then let me tell you about our stunning Shires and Spires Ultra.

Shires and Spires

Way back in 1066, the Normans won at Hastings and brought a new feudal system with them – and a plethora of churches and country houses to go with it.

Northamptonshire did not miss out on the Norman building programme, and it quickly gained a reputation as the county of ‘Spires and Squires’.

And so, to our second race: The Shires and Spires.

This five-distance circular event has something for everyone, featuring a mixture of trails and roads over 10k (roads), half-marathon, three-quarter marathon (new for 2024!), marathon and ultra marathon distances.

So, come along and join us in Northamptonshire and find some history – and harmony – in the countryside. 

Rose of the Shires
When: Saturday, April 6, starts 8am, registration from 6.45am
Where: The event starts and finishes at Brickworth Country Park

Cost: £70.00 (includes a tracker), three person relay – £90 per team, four person relay – £100 per team, seven person relay – £130 per team 

This event also incorporates The Rosebud Marathon 10k 

For more details and to enter click here.

When: Sunday, May 12, starts 8.30am, registration from 2-4pm on May 11 or from 7am on the day 
Where: The event starts and finishes at Naseby Village Hall
Cost: From £24 to £60 depending on the event
For more details and to enter click on any of the below links: