Club members enjoy year round competition opportunities. Whether it's track and field, road running, cross-country, Sportshall or indoor athletics, there are events locally, county wide, regionally and nationally to suit all interests, ages and levels of ability.
Athletics can be a complicated sport, but competition tends to fall into six main types as shown below. Athletes should speak to the coaching team about which competitions are available and most appropriate to their stage of development.
These competitions fall into two main types.
Open Championships Anyone can enter regardless of ability level as long as they are an affiliated club member. For example, the Somerset AA Track & Field Championships, but also County, Regional & National Cross-Country Championships.
Closed Championships For these competitions there is either a minimum entry standard or qualifying selection criteria. Examples would be the England Age Group Championships, the County, Regional and National Schools Track & Field Championships, as well as the Inter-Counties Cross-Country Championships.
These competitions tend to fall into two main types, but all tend to offer a restricted programme of a selection of field events and track distances, but not a full programme. Open Meetings offer a great starting point for beginners to get a taste of competition in a low-key competition environment.
Midweek Track and Field meetings These usually offer a selection of events between 6.00 and 9.00pm. Entry on the night is usually accepted, but it is worth checking the host club’s event details.
Weekend Open Meetings These usually offer a wider selection of events and may require pre-entry.
The club currently competes in the South West Athletics League for Track and Field and the Gwent League for cross-country. Taunton AC is passionate about supporting athlete development, and Under 20 / Senior athletes looking for higher level competition should speak with the lead event group coaches about additional opportunities.
South West Athletics League This consists of a series of four league fixtures and one Cup Match, with opportunities for Under 13s, Under 15s, Under 17s, Under 20s and Seniors. Teams are selected by Taunton AC Team Managers, but all members wanting to compete are encouraged to make contact with the team managers, as we aim to strike a balance between fielding the most competitive team possible, but also providing opportunity to compete for those who are willing to commit.
Gwent Cross-Country League FoText to follow
Road Racing and Multi-Terrain Events
The club promotes a wide range of local races amongst the senior road running section of the club. These tend to fall into four main categories.
Local annual races within county or neighbouring counties which range from 5K to marathon. Entry procedures vary depending on popularity, but usually offer pre-entry and on the day options.
Higher profile mass-participation road races such as the Bristol 10K & Half-Marathon, Cardiff 10K & Half-Marathon, Bath Half-Marathon, and London Marathon, etc. These popular races have an entry limit, or ballot entry procedures in the case of London, and so early entry is advised.
Road race series These tend to be over shorter 5K or 5 mile distances monthly throughout the year or throughout the spring and summer months. The Yeovilton 5K series is popular with TAC members.
Parkrun Parkrun 5K is a popular informal opportunity for the club runner, and another great starting point for the beginner. Taunton Parkrun which takes place every Saturday at 9.00am is a naturally popular choice for TAC members.
Taunton AC also hosts the Wellington Monument race every December, an important event for the club for which we need the support of volunteers. In addition, we provide annual support to the Taunton 10K & Half-Marathon events.
Members should look out for licensed races which indicate safe races that have followed a standard of procedure. Races tend to be certificated by either UK Athletics or ARC (Association of Road Running Clubs). UKA race results will be ratified on Power of 10 rankings whereas ARC will not.
British Milers Club Events
The BMC offers great opportunities locally, regionally and nationally for athletes aged Under 13 and above who have an interest in endurance distances 800/1500/3000 through to 5000 & 10,000 metres for Under 17s, Under 20s and Seniors, as well as steeplechase. BMC events are unique in that they aim to provide pacemakers, and athletes race with athletes of the same ability level rather than age. Entry procedures are strict and are done online via the BMC website.
Relay competitions are growing in popularity. Track relay races take place within the League and some Championship events.
The annual English Cross-Country Relays take place in November, and have been an increasingly popular away trip for members of the club across all age groups. Road Relays are also growing in popularity, with late September/early October and March/April being the key time of the year for road relays.