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White Star Running update 2023 – endings and beginnings

Changes are coming to White Star Running, but before we launch into that, we just want to say that for you, as runners, it’s business as usual, so don’t panic!

End of an era

Okay, so the big news is this: the time has come for Andy Palmer to retire from White Star Running. Andy came up with the idea for the very first race, Giants Head Marathon, and the company itself back in 2012, with the inaugural event taking place in 2013. Since then, he has driven the company forward, creating something pretty unique for trail running in Dorset. He’s been stood in a muddy field, shouting at runners, for over a decade, planning new and interesting races in different areas, and finding all the hills for you to enjoy.

Here is an update from Andy himself to explain more…

If the video isn’t loading for you here, you can also see it in our community Facebook Group.

So, while it is goodbye in a formal business manner, Andy won’t be far away. You’ll still see him around at races and he’ll be aiding the transition of the company into its next phase.

Talking of which…

New beginnings

At the helm of White Star Running going forward will be Gemma Wilton. Most of you know Gemma already, as she’s the person you chat to when you call or email Race Admin, and has been Andy’s ‘second-in-command’ for a long time. With her vast amount of experience in event management and race administration, White Star Running is being transferred to the safest hands possible.

The rest of your core team is staying the same too, with Mandy in White Star Clothing sales, Jo running the numbers, Julie writing the content and Dani designing the kit and medals. The same extended team of amazing people will be behind the scenes as always, sorting route planning, logistics, admin, shop, aid stations, marshalling etc, so that race day runs as smoothly as it always has.

From a runner’s perspective, you might not notice too much difference – you’ll just see Gemma popping up more in the group with news, or giving race briefings in the future.

However, there are certain formal things that need to be done when it comes to retirement and transferring ownership of a business. That’s a process that is happening now and is ongoing. Please bear with us while this is happening.

There will be a delay in opening our summer races, as this can’t be done until the handover is complete. We know many of you are waiting patiently for certain future races, so we hope this explains why we haven’t opened them as yet. They are coming, but we will have to ask you to be patient a little bit longer, and there may be some changes in the short term during the transition period.

For now though, we hope you all wish Andy a happy White Star retirement. His last two races as the boss will be the Ox Races and the Giants Head weekend, the latter of which we’ll probably persuade him to say a few words at the barn dance. Buy him a drink if you see him!

There is still time to join us at these two events:

Thank you from all of us for understanding and for being with us this last decade. We hope you’ll continue to join all our great races going forwards, under Gemma’s new management.

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