In short: Finish in the stadium was fun, but too crowded for me In full: I live in East London and occasionally run round or past the Olympic Park but have never been in the stadium, and fancied running in the footsteps of the 2012 greats so signed up for the race, despite the £32 cost (it was free for my friends who live in Newham). It proved to be a hot morning run with little shade, which made it fairly challenging. I was hoping to run in under 53 mins and was in the second main "white" wave for people expecting to run a sub 55 min race, but found to my disappointment that people were running much slower than the pace I expected to run, and spent a lot of time and energy overtaking them, so combined with the heat, it took me 54 mins. The finish in the stadium was fun, though I think I'll stick to smaller races in the future, particularly as this race's organisers plan to increase runner numbers in future years (there were an estimated 17,000 split over the 10k, 2.5k fun run and afternoon relay, of which I think around 10,000 ran the 10K). I'll also have to plan my start quite carefully for this autumn's London Royal Parks HM, which will be similarly busy. One more thing, the goody bag with medal, drinks, energy bars etc was good, but a cotton tee-shirt for a £32 race, really? Date of review: July 20, 2015
In short: Best Half Ever Done In full: These guys never fail. If you want a fun atmosphere, well organised and memorable race then pic any race from the White Star Runners!
I opted to go fancy dress for this one and so did many others, fantastic route and lovely views. Water stations (Love station) are epic.......Choice of.....Strawberry's, melon, orange, banana, jelly babies, jelly beans, energy gels, pretzels, water, juice, schnapps, scotch eggs and many more....its a buffet!! All the marshals are just as bonkers as many of us runners that took part. The Medal was huge! Its the size of an iphone!
End of the race was a roman bath to dipo your feet in, a hog roast, a bar, a cake stand and massage tent.
TRUST ME......These guys know how to organise an event, You wont find anything better out there......Try a race and see....bet you'll be signing up to every one after!! Date of review: July 20, 2015
In short: Amazing people amazing race amazing bling!!!! In full: White star running don't stop at an extra mile to make their races epic, they go a whole 10+ extra miles to make it spectacular. Such a loving bunch the support is great, atmosphere incredible and I literally cannot wait to do another one even though it was tougher than any race I've ever done before!!! Loved every minute thanks guys!!! Xxxx Date of review: July 20, 2015
In short: Big hills, but also big smiles In full: As advertised, this is a tough trail marathon. A double ascent of Box Hill takes in plenty of steps and makes for a good quad workout. Probably not the best race if this is your first trail marathon, but the rewards are worth it. Great views, very supportive marshals, and superb cake at the aid stations. And to cap it all, an enormous (but surprisingly tasteful) medal Great first running of this race - will be back Date of review: July 20, 2015
In short: Dorset scenery at its finest In full: A lovely well run event on a hot and sunny July day. Just enough forest to cool off occasionally, challenging trails but all hills runnable not too steep, the extra 0.7miles is value for money because the scenery is just outstanding. The barley field was straight out of "gladiator" the movie, and the effect was enhanced by the real gladiator costumes worn by many brave fancy dressers on the course.
In short: Great Stadium Finish In full: The stadium finish was great, but I can't find any other reasons for wanting to do this race.
The 0930 start on a Sunday makes timing tight if you are coming by public transport from out of town. Arrived to find a field full of runners milling around looking for the baggage drop, no signs, no one to ask and no mention on the PA. When I did find it the "number stamping" mentioned in the instructions wasn't happening and afterwards nobody checked I had the right bag. Fortunately the start of the race was delayed 10 mins by some other administrative problem, so I made it.
There were over 10,000 finishers and it was very congested for the whole 10k. Impossible to settle in to a pace. We were promised that next year there would be "even more" runners taking part.
The stadium finish is atmospheric and it's worth doing it for that, but not a race I'll be doing again.
In short: What has White Star Runing ever done for us? In full: Nothing!
Apart, of course, from organising THE BEST TRAIL RACES; generous LoveStations; cider; cake; fun; friendly helpful marshals; great atmosphere; funny signage; cider; cake; silly costumes; wonderful locations; amazing bling; muffs!; cider; cake; centurions; celts; Roman baths; amazing value; and, a bloody great time for all!
Did I mention cider and cakes? Date of review: July 20, 2015
In short: fantastic fun event In full: Really enjoyed this event and everything about it something for everyone great atmosphere, organisation, marshals, aid stations, top notch medals! tough route set in a lovely location i can honestly recommend this event. white star running at their best! they put the fun back into running Date of review: July 20, 2015
In short: Having done a few White Star Races I knew what to expect but this was so much more. Fancy dress and fun with a gladiator on a horse to start us off. Some great off road running tracks that were quite challenging but just brilliant. Highly Recommend Date of review: July 20, 2015
In short: Gorgeous scenery, amazing organisers, not too hilly, In full: Dorset Invader was the most fun I've had running in ages, really well thought out course without the oft regular steep descent immediately followed by steep ascent (again and again) that you tend to find on trails.
The weather was glorious and 'just' on the right side of too hot luckily since there wasn't a whole lot of shade throughout the course.
Air stations were staffed by some of the friendliest people I've ever met whilst running and the runners themselves are equally lovely, and the WSR staff are just amazing.
I moved recently and don't know too many people down here yet and mostly arrive and leave races alone, but every WSR event I've been at has had a lovely crowd at the finish line cheering everyone in and the Invader was no different, I must have heard a couple of the girls a few hundred yards out and it makes for a huge boost at the end of a race.
I'd recommend any and every event WSR put on, and this one's a no brainer for next year. Date of review: July 20, 2015
In short: Fantastic! Well organised, great route, great fun! In full: A great day, a great race and a great medal!
I enjoyed everything about this race, from the free parking, the welcoming marshalls and organisers and the finishing fort to the motivating and funny signs on the course.
We were led off by a wonderful horse called Gunner, who was ridden by a Roman clad farmer, which was a great touch and much appreciated. The fancy dress was great with a brilliant turn out, and this helped to make the day even more fun. The atmosphere before the race was great and really enjoyable. The course was quite hilly, with mainly rolling hills, so not overly hard, and about average for a Dorset race. The route was very nice with some great views an and I really enjoyed running through the trees/forest in the early part of the race. It was a hot day, so it was quite tough running next to the wheat fields with the sun on your back, but still enjoyable. There was a 2mile section through some long grass which was quite horrible and resulted in a few cuts to the shin. Fortunately my kitten has trained me well for this with numerous bites and scratches to my legs over past few months! The trail then goes back the way that we started with a slight detour to extend the course, and then comes out to a much appreciated downhill finish! Running through the hay fort at the finish is a lovely touch as well.
The ground was dry, with no rain in the previous week so I was fine running in saucony kinvara 5's, but I would image a trail shoe would be better if wet.
The signs on the course we're fantastic and easy to follow. There were no marshalls needed as the signs were were so good, which meant they could be put put better use at the road crossings - which passed by without a hitch.
The medal is large and well designed, a great memento of the day. The rest of the goody bag was also nice. A hit of a shame not to have a tshirt, but you can see your entry fee has been well spent spent on other items, so I appreciate a cheaper fee with no tshirt rather rather than a high entry fee with a tshirt (shirts are available to purchase seperately).
It was a great event, and I have set a new PB, so it was a great day all around. I would have loved to have stayed for for the disco and BBQ later, but unfortunately had other places to be. The chaos run on the Sunday sounded great as well.
A really well organised race with lots of special little touches (I especially liked the "you are here" sign). You can really tell that White Star Running know what people want from a race, and nether deliver 110%. I will definitely look to run this (or the full) next year, and will certainly be running in more WSR races in the . Date of review: July 20, 2015
In short: Utterly fantastic race/setting/food/people :) In full: I have had the pleasure of entering a few White Star events and whilst all have been excellent this one was most excellent :) Slickly organised but without being officious, really friendly marshalls, as is the norm for this bunch,I mean how many races do you see being entered by gladiators/toga clad loons and various wizards, celts etc whilst in blazing sunshine also in possibly one of the most beautiful parts of the world? Finish line, medal of superior bling, best I've yet to receive, next step given a Dorset Apple cake muffin and a goodie bag with Dorset Jam made at the farm we were at!!! AWESOME!!! Yes, I will probably be back ;) Date of review: July 20, 2015
In short: OUTSTANDING In full: Perfect family orientated weekend in beautiful Dorset- camping, farm shop/ cafe, home cooked food laid on, every minute detail sorted- great race- well marked, marshalled, picnic style checkpoints, Roman theme was genius (including mounted gladiator to start the race!!), Roman bath afterwards great for tired legs, disco and bar in evening superb- ideal atmosphere for the whole family - brilliant! Date of review: July 20, 2015
In short: Great race from White Star Running In full: Fantastic half marathon! But no surprise when White Star Running are organised it. Great atmosphere and awsome trails. Date of review: July 20, 2015
In short: best race to date In full: im really fussy and if somethings not right you would know about it....but this race has it all gr8 location gr8 medals and proper coffee....you would be mad not to run this one next year Date of review: July 20, 2015
In short: Brilliant In full: This was a fantastic marathon in every way but the best of all is the amazing, fun atmosphere you always get at White Star running events. This one was full of Roman fancy dress, toga clad marshals, Aphrodites love station!!, many encouraging and funny signs on the way, and some very happy runners. Also you get the best medals ever!! I want to do this one every year until I die! ?? Date of review: July 20, 2015
In short: Just an excuse for grown-ups to play dress up, with a bit of running thrown in In full: Hills, scenery, schnapps & cider at the Lovestation, and a couple of dozen Romans wandering through rural Dorset villages. What more could you want?
Usual outstanding offering from WSR, who have to be the friendliest, looniest bunch of race organisers around, but they certainly know how to put on a good event that covers all abilities from speedy peeps to plodders. Don't ever let fear of the hills put you off entering thinking you'll be too slow - the marshals will still greet you with a smile and do everything they can for you to keep you going, even if you're right at the back with the sweeper.
On site camping, very welcoming hosts from the farm base, great disco, fab food and awesome bling. A real sense of community. Date of review: July 20, 2015
In short: The Best Race Ever!!! In full: If you want a race that's challenging, value for money, full of friendly faces but ultimately the most fun you'll have during a marathon then this is the one - absolutely awesome!!!! Well done White Star Running :) Date of review: July 20, 2015
In short: Veni Vidi Vici! (Best not to run it in sandals though) In full: Fantastically friendly atmosphere - including the wake up call on the campsite. Great facilities (including showers). Lots to scoff on the run as you admire the scenery, after a Roman in armour on horseback led the start. Roll on next year. Date of review: July 20, 2015