In short: Message from Walter Hill In full: Hi Gareth,
I now have an opportunity to say thank you to you and your team for yesterdays 5 star promotion.
Having represented British Athletics and England Athletics as an ultra runner when I was younger and having continued to run in my later years , I have had many opportunities to witness good and bad promotions.
Yesterday’s Woldinghman Marathon had many strengths. Please allow me to record them.
· I never had to look at the course description as the course was so well marked.
· The novelty of the out and back stretch to Slines Oaks Road allowed camaraderie to develop amongst the runners.
· The number of feed stations were adequate and provided a banquet of food. I never used the gels I carried for 26.2 miles!
· The course is a significant challenge and technical underfoot, what you would expect from a Trail course.
· Amazing vistas that were ongoing throughout the course.
· Your team who helped were excellent.
· The yellow technical T-Shirt was a real bonus.
· Having the names of the runners on the numbers added to the day.
Although I was running with a healing collar bone I never felt at risk.
I have to declare that the thought of running the second lap was a real challenge but once started I enjoyed it even more than the first lap.
My only concern were the road crossings and the steps on the course which I traversed with significant care.
Well done and thank you again and I hope you got to the pub before it got dark.
In short: Very enjoyable event, fabulous scenery, interesting course. Organisation a bit patchy. In full: Plenty of plus points - interesting course around Knole Park, quite hilly in places, but not unreasonably so. Very friendly, supportive marshals - encouraging ALL the runners (and not just their friends /family/clubmates!). Nice to have Dame Kelly H handing out medals at the end.
Access to the race for supporters and families was however, disappointing. The passageway from HQ to main carpark (that runners had been advised to use) remained locked. Also the main access route from race HQ to the start and finish area was inaccessible (down a steep bank) for anyone who was not pretty fit and mobile. In the end my OH and various others (eg parents with pushchairs) decided just to wait around in the cafe area rather walk the considerably longer distance to the course. Date of review: August 29, 2016
In short: Scenic and challenging In full: It was a glorious sunny day today and I thoroughly enjoyed this excellent event. Having read reviews beforehand, I knew the course would be hilly so decided to enjoy the challenge rather than aim for a certain time. Having said that, my time was only about ten minutes more than my PB, and that included walking up the legendary mile 10.5 hill, so I think the pretty surroundings, no congestion on the route and friendly supporters must have helped. Excellent organisation with easy parking, quick registration and good bank of portaloos. Nice medal and refreshments at the finish. Only minor downsides were that I couldn't hear the announcements made over the loudspeaker at the beginning (though it was a lovely touch to be mentioned by the compere by name at the finish) and the narrow finish made it tricky to easily spectate others finishing . An excellent run - thank you to all the organisers and volunteers on the day. Date of review: August 29, 2016
In short: Quite an adventure In full: This would easily be the most demanding of the many half marathons I have run, but also one of the most enjoyable. Given the severe test of terrain and the vertiginous hills, the focus for me was not on finishing time, but of finishing. The camaraderie among runners was magnificent, the organisation first class, and the setting breathtaking. Thanks to the marshals and well done to all who completed the full marathon - quite a feat. I hope everyone has dried out and all are recovering well. Date of review: August 29, 2016
In short: Another glorious Gareth Davies race... In full: Barnes Runners have been "enjoying" Gareth's races for a number of years now. After Richmond Park and the Vanguards Way, this is a new addition which is just as friendly, just as well-organised and just as scenic. The beautiful Surrey landscape goes some way towards compensating for my broken body 24 hours after the race. We'll be back in force next year. Date of review: August 29, 2016
In short: Once more an excellent race! In full: Apart from the hills (we love them really!) an excellently organised race. This was my second time of doing it (2015 was the other), and organisation better again! Really looking forward to the marathon next year - must do some training though! Thank you for a great race! Date of review: August 29, 2016
In short: great race In full: first time for this event didn't dissapoint not totally flat but certainly pb possible got one today even if only seconds great scenary/ course well worth doing thanks to bryan for the photos Date of review: August 29, 2016
In short: Beautiful scenery. Very hilly course, Well marked. Very friendly and generous organisers In full: I did the 2016 Woldingham Half. A really challenging hilly course in the North Downs. the hills were not unexpected because the organiser explained the course very accurately on the race website and included the hill profile on"mapmyrun".
The scenery was stunning. The course a big challenge. There weren't a great many marshals out on the course but the route was very well marked with orange and yellow arrows and ribbons. On the HM course they were 3 aid stations which were very well stocked with a good range of different snacks and drinks. My two sons who are 2 and 4 were also very generously treated to snacks and drink at the aid station at the start (thank you very much for that you were very kind).
The atmosphere and vibe at the race from the organisers, marshalls and runners was exceptionally friendly. The location at Woldingham School is a lovely setting.
I live 20mins away so I am local. I will do this race next year (possibly even the full marathon). Even if I weren't so local I would still return - it's a race worth travelling to.
In short: Tough trails but really good fun In full: We traveled 135 miles to do this race, and were not disappointed! It was in it's first year and so quite a small race. On arrival there was music at race HQ, which helped put you in the mood and keep you calm! The race starts at a very grand school in extremely grand surroundings and although you initially head off up a quiet road, it's not long before you are making you first climb. Lots of hills, woodlands and a bit of road to mix it up made this a really good, fun course. You need to keep switched on, as there are a lot of narrow tracks and tree roots to negotiate, but this just added to the enjoyment in my opinion and focusing on this helped the miles to pass by quickly :) We had been told we could take our dog, and it was her very first marathon. She was made a real fuss of and given water/food at all the CPs. If you do take your dog, just be aware that you will it can be tricky in places on the narrow single track sections with a dog attached to you - but very doable if you're used to running trails with a dog. The race offered 2 options - 1 loop for half marathon and 2 for a full. I think this made it too easy for people to quit at halfway, as quite a few did, but still got half marathon medals. Nice to think you can still be rewarded if you are struggling...but perhaps better to not have the option? Depends on your take on it I guess. It did make it very tempting to stop though! My only 2 minor gripes were the medal being for both half and marathon, so not really stating it was a marathon medal. I think the course being so tough warrants a different medal if you manage the full marathon. Secondly - the usual t-shirt size gripe. By the time the marathoners had come in there were no smalls or mediums left, just large (huge!) and extra large. I think most marathon runners would be small or medium so think more of this size would be good. That said, I don't want to detract from the fact that I thoroughly enjoyed this race and smiled lots both during it and after. There are no marshals other than at checkpoints so you need to look out for tape but the course markings were really good (we were also given a map and written instructions - but didn't need to look at them) The marshals and Race Director were all really friendly and welcoming and the medal was really different. All in all a great race, and very smoothly run - especially for a first time! Thanks guys :) Date of review: August 29, 2016
In short: Keith Simpson Comments - Loved It In full: I completed the inaugural Woldingham Marathon this morning and it was by far the most scenic, friendly, well run and challenging marathons I have done for some time. As it was the inaugural running of this event, it was a relatively small field with just under 70 signed up for the marathon and roughly about the same for the half. The race director, Gareth and his team had everything very well organised and the whole thing went like clockwork - the course was well marked, the aid stations were perfectly spaced, well stocked and manned by very cheery marshals. Race HQ was located in the stunning Woldingham School which is a beautiful country house set in Marden Park, well off the beaten track and dating back to 1842 - I would never have know it was there if I didn’t do this event. Although my legs are still aching, I have already pencilled this event in for the August bank holiday weekend in 2017!
Well done and thanks very much to you and the team for a great event.
In short: Brilliant run. Please reduce gradients - just a bit.? In full: Organisation, Marshalls, Web information : great/ highest order. Fun placards:brilliant. Everything par excellance - apart from the course. Yes, it advised hilly and undulating but when so many non - elite or good club runners- had to WALK instead of RUN many hilly elements of the course it becomes a test of endurance primarily rather than running ability. Date of review: August 28, 2016
In short: Great race, one of the best organised races around - really safe.Well done and many thanks for a brilliant day. In full: What a race - It maybe a little on the hard side but it makes up for it in everything else. Date of review: August 28, 2016
In short: A no-frills 10K in a glorious setting In full: This was tough, most of it off-road along grassy uneven ground with a couple of decent climbs as well. But not a x-country mudfest. A basic 10K with a small field - turn up, pay yer money and go for a run. Friendly marshals and efficiently organised all round. A lovely setting, being a stately pile in a deer park. Within a short bike ride of the station. A nice way to spend a Sunday morning. Date of review: August 28, 2016
In short: Weather couldn't put a dampener on this race! In full: Well done Headington 5 ml team of brilliant organisers - Philip, Steve and all their splendid volunteers - this was reassuringly a race that took you the full distance and left you satisfied with an excellent work out! Much better than anyone might have thought you'd get from a wet August bank holiday Sunday in Marston!! Top club race with an uplifting atmosphere. Run it next year everyone... Date of review: August 28, 2016