The 38th Deal Dinosaur 10K takes place on Sunday (21 July) from Walmer Sea Scouts Hut off Marine Road. Around 500 runners will be competing in the main race or the accompanying 1500m children's races, with entries for either event possible on the day.
Deal is one of the prettiest seaside towns in Kent and boasts plenty of history as one of the Cinque Ports and for a time the busiest port in England. The coast of France – 25 miles as the crow flies – is visible on a clear day. Deal's 16th-century castle and nearby Walmer Castle – built by Henry VIII – both feature in the out and back course between the towns.
None of which explains the quirky race title. Deal Dinosaur 10K is named in fond memory of Deal Tri Club founder, Roger Francis-Darby, who died of skin cancer in 2000. During his highly competitive running, duathlon and multi-sport activities he often referred to himself as an old dinosaur, even though he was only in his mid 50s. When Roger passed away the club wanted to remember him, so they decided to change the name of the Deal Regatta 10K to the Dinosaur 10K.
A percentage of the profits from each race goes to the Canterbury Hospital Skin and Dermatology Department each year, as well as donations to the Deal, Walmer and Kingsdown Regatta Association.
Course records for the Dinosaur 10K are surely living on borrowed time. Mike Coleman (Medway AC, 30:35) has been fastest since 2005 and Gillian Johnson (Dulwich Runners, 35:25) set her mark in 2004.
Unusually there are records for the junior races, too. These have been held by Jason Read (Deal Tri, 4:49) since 2004 and Emily Bond (Thanet Roadrunners, 5:39) from 2010.
A comprehensive prize list includes awards for age categories, teams and first married couple and another plus for this event is that entrants on the day are eligible for all prizes.