In short: Phew, what a scorcher............. In full: Scenic start/finish in school grounds and varied mix of terrain along roads, trails, paths etc. Seemed much hillier than I expected though that may have been more perception than reality due to the weather deciding to crank up the temperature by 5c or more than recently. Bit disappointed by lack of atmosphere at start however; just a few inaudible announcements then off.....! Date of review: March 31, 2014
In short: Lovely scenic half marathon, well organized In full: This is well organised, great that parking is right at the start/finish area. Race started a little late, probably due to the clocks going forward. It's a scenic route and is very well marshaled with lots of friendly encouragement along the way. The initial pleasant downhill soon gives way to some tough hills, and the route overall was challenging. All in all, a super half marathon although I am suffering today Date of review: March 31, 2014
In short: One of my favourites but getting too big for the venue In full: I have ran PW for many years and have seen it grow to the present level in this time. Sadly the race start facilities are not up to handling this many people. The queue for the loos was simply unacceptable - more loos need to be provided for a race of this size. I was pleased to see they had a marshall directing runners to the nearest empty loo (this works so well as Tunbridge Wells) but this was not enough. I knew of fellow club runners who had to give up trying to use the loo before the start.
The baggage drop-off was well managed by the volunteers but, again, far too long a queue to get to.
Parking for PW is OK but you have to either work out a route to get out after or be prepared to hang around for the duration!
The reason above mean you arrive an hour or so early and can just about fit in parking, loo, bag-drop in this time but then the next challenge. How do you get to the start-pen for your anticipated time. This is a massive problem and the only option was to try to get through the spectators then to climb over the barrier.
It is difficult, the race is so good that more want to run it but something needs to be done to accommodate such a large number of racers.
As for the race itself I love this one! The fast, flat lanes are perfect. Some don't like the fact it goes on for miles without much contact but I enjoy the countryside and the scenery where you can see for miles! Weather was perfect.
Thanks PW - see you next year but I will have to set my alarm to get to the venue a lot earlier than the usual hour unless you want to take part int he crush. One last thing - clocks went back the day of the race so why was it 9.30am! 10.00am would have helped deal with the shock of the loss of the hour! Date of review: March 31, 2014
In short: Beautiful run through glorious Kent countryside In full: Great run today on pretty much traffic free roads, plenty of water stops and sponges (luckily as it was much warmer than I expected), good marshalls and almost totally flat giving a great PB potential (I got one!). Only gripe would be the enormous loo and baggage queues but with over 2000 runners I guess that's to be expected! Well done and thanks to all concerned! Date of review: March 30, 2014
In short: Great little race! In full: A very well organised race. Fantastic scenery, starting and finishing at Badbury Rings Iron Age fort, beautiful views in every direction. Good mix of paths and quiet roads (a tractor was the only vehicle I saw). Very small field this first year, I'm sure it will grow. Date of review: March 30, 2014
In short: Brilliant race with Mulit coloured T-Shirts In full: A brilliant low key race in the gorgeous hills of the vale of clwyd,it`s a tough course.the T-shirt are a very unique touch which iv never seen before with green red and blue coloured varieties to choose from.a must for those up for a challenge. Date of review: March 30, 2014
In short: Great run. Fab facilities. Enjoyable route In full: For me, this was a great race. The route was varied and helped by perfect weather for running. The last 2 miles back on the track were a bit of a drag but at least we knew what to expect. The start was fine as there were not huge numbers but could end up being chaotic with more runners. The Weybridge residents who did come out so early with the clocks changing were very supportive, even the man in his dressing gown. I really enjoyed my day and hope this race continue to grow. Well done 2.09 Date of review: March 30, 2014
In short: Absolute Bargain Race! (But don, tell everyone!) In full: I absolutely loved this race. I was thinking of giving it a miss as the logistics of getting to the start for the 9.15 "off" seemed a bit of a nightmare, however i,m glad i mad the effort as this race (so far!) has been my favourite race of 2014! Not a race, race as some sections of the pavements were very narrow which prevented overtaking (and explains the 750 runner limit) and there is a chance a Tram might hold you up! But a great atmosphere and cameraderie among other runners, The only negative i can find is that headphones were supposedly banned, but quite a few runners were wearing them, i hope the organisers took note of their numbers and are going to disqualify them! That aside, for the price it was incredibly generous, a niceish medal, although not bespoke, a goody bag, an apple and/or a banana at the finish and a free massage if you wanted it! I will definitely return in 2015 as this race is a little Gem! (but don,t tell everyone! ;-)) ) Date of review: March 30, 2014
In short: All for Brathay Trust, an amazing cause. Excellent first time race/s. Well done! In full: The most beautiful handmade medals, such time and care went into all the details. Everyone was so friendly. A race put on by runners for runners. Date of review: March 30, 2014
In short: Superb as always, but a little food for thought In full: Tremendous race, friendly organisation, nice easy second half which is mainly downhill.
Superb tech T, with the kind of design you'd be happy to wear (other races take note!)
Very quick delivery of results, half of which were up at Race HQ during the prize-giving.
Spot on at HQ with number collection etc. Usefully signed, brilliantly well marshalled and plenty of warning given to get to the start.
Road crossings were superb, and felt very safe even though roads were open. Very well done on this, as it really does make a difference.
However, some minor gripes. Some unfortunately parked cars early on in the route, including one on Sunderland Road, and a van which caused a bottleneck of runners on the thin path into Northcroft. The section prior to the first sweeping uphill corner on Sunderland Road was the point where marshalls were getting tough on directing people on to the pavement. Given the number of runners at this stage, it caused a bit of a jam and slowed progress for many. More worrying though, this stretch has concrete bollards which are impossible to see when there are people in front of you. I run this road twice a week, and I still nearly ran into a couple of them! The odd marshal on the pavement stood in front of the first one might be useful. At the water stations, which were superbly operated, I'd suggest stationing the marshal with the binbag a little further away to help with the litter situation. Many people around me were hanging on to their cups a little longer and simply dumped them on the ground.
Skip to the end... The finish gantry looked a little, well, weathered? More than one person commented that it looked unsightly and not exactly inspiring confidence that it wouldn't collapse on runners passing underneath! Another suggestion I'd make - a banner saying "Finish" on the other side of the gantry will make for better photo opportunities. After the finish, it was very disappointing that the squash made available to the first few hundred runners had run out by about the 1hr 40 mark. Water was still there, but with numbers known beforehand, it does seem a bit of an unfortunate thing to have happened. Medal would have been nice, but lack of this was more than made up for by the introduction of chip timing. Oh, and please get the nice guy in race HQ a more powerful amplifier!
Note however that all the above are all pretty harsh, and didn't detract from a brilliant race. Biggleswade AC can always be relied upon to put a great event together, and once again this was a real gem. Congrats to all concerned.
In short: Superb In full: Really well organised race, an army of marshals and very good changing, baggage and loo facilities. Course is very nice too, just a couple of very short climbs and lots of places to stretch out, Over 2,000 runners means you'll always have someone to work with through the race. Date of review: March 30, 2014
In short: Despite being well on time for the race the extremely long queues for the bag drop and then the toilets meant I started the race after the gun had gone off. There were clearly not enough toilets for the number of participants. In full: This is a large race and in this regard the organisation really needs looking at. There were a lot of disappointed racers who, like me, ended up starting the race near the back once the gun had gone off. The start/finish areas also seemed very congested. It's a flat and fairly scenic course. It is well marshalled. The atmosphere is average - and incomparable to, say, the Tunbridge Wells half.
In short: Worth upsetting mum for In full: A lovely day for it. Lulled by ease of parking in the past plus getting up late for the clock change meant more queueing at the last minute. The better loos did not lend themselves to a fast flow. However once up and running lovely route, great crowd, good villagge atmosphere after. A bargain, will return. Date of review: March 30, 2014