In short: Love it! In full: After a five year break from running, chose what was once my first 10k to get back into the swing and it was a great choice. Manchester is a wonderful city and you get all sides of it here, with mixture of old and new and the grit and glamour of the scenery and the people. Organisation is slick given the sheer numbers, support good (despite the Mancunian weather) and like a festival atmosphere. It's pretty much flat and so wide that dodging the more 'optimistic' runners isn't much of a problem. Could make some improvements, medals could be better for a race of this type/size - Run for All have nailed this. Again value for money affected by the goody bag this year which was terrible, tech t-shirt is a welcome improvement on some years ago, but a 1lb bag of uncooked rice??? A cheap Asda fake Mars or a banana would do the trick. If you're looking at shaving a few seconds off a hard fought PB, probably not the place> If you want a well supported run in a great city location, sign up now! Date of review: September 26, 2016
In short: First half, overall quite happy In full: Previously been a 5/10k runner, but decided to make a low key step up. For others in that position who don't mind a bit of undulation, it was nice and cheap without having to run the gauntlet of a club run with 'proper' half runners or struggle with pacing in a massive field. If you know Rochdale, you won't be expecting stunning vistas, but they made the most of the canal, Hollingworth Lake and the splendid Town Hall as the start/finish. Water was perfect, sports caps, small bottles, well positioned. Banana at the end was very welcome, much better than some gravel-like energy bar. Nice tech t-shirt. Generally, better than I anticipated as the organisation seemed haphazard with desperate pleas for marshals a couple of weeks before. The canal was an issue as the front pack of slower runners (we set off first) crossed at narrow points with the elites as they were just settling in to a rhythm, felt a bit like a moving obstacle for them. Public access to canal/lake bits of the route was a mixed bag, provided some support which was generally lacking, but there was a tiny minority of dog walkers/cyclists who might have been a bit more willing to share the space. Real lack of marshals at a key point where 10k and half were running in opposite directions, probably slowed me down as I started to worry I was on the wrong course. Medal was terrible, genuinely worse than my 5 year old son gets from kids fun runs! P.S. Not entirely traffic free and multi-terrain is slightly overstating, it's predominantly tarmac. Date of review: September 26, 2016
In short: A beauty In full: As fast and flat as they claim. Lots of running on the Tarka trail which has a smooth tarmac surface and follows the river making it scenic. Unusual to be allowed run inside Chivenor Royal Marines base. Support was superb and there were lots of drink stations also offering Blackberry vodka and squashes. Loads of food too - cakes and pastries, jelly babies, fresh orange quarters and wedges of watermelon. Superb effort, much appreciated. Date of review: September 26, 2016
In short: Great medal, nice day, too many niggles In full: A lot good about this, the event village (despite the whingeing below) was good and kept our kids (5 and 7)occupied while I ran and we all filled the long wait for the mini runs. Medals are always great at RFA events and does justify the higher price, kids ones were great too. York is a lovely city and support was generally good and not obtrusive. Essentially a great family day out. As a run though, too many niggles that will probably mean I don't come back in what is a crowded calendar. Route - too many switchbacks (two in the last km when there's a racecourse right there?!), parked cars on route, 'bouncy' bridge over the river and spectators all over the place at that spot. A couple of tight turns with, albeit very short, steep incline/declines on poor surfaces too. Access to the car park should have been separated from the final switchback too, there were runners dodging pushchairs on the course. Coming back for the Yorkshire 10 Mile, but did what I should have done with this and checked out the course first. Fine for beginners, but for the switchbacks, which I imagine would demoralise in equal measure as they niggled me. Date of review: September 26, 2016
In short: A friendly well organised event In full: This is the 3rd year I made the long drive from Aberystwyth so that must say something . A great event which the locals support enthusiastically . Ideal for beginners or experienced runners who want to enjoy the "Ealing Feeling" Date of review: September 26, 2016
In short: Once more with (Ealing) feeling...another great race. In full: I've run EHM all five times: it started out great and gets a little better ever race (I wish I could say the same for my times!). The expected excellent organisation and great atmosphere thanks to the volunteers and crowds, but what I noticed more than ever this year is the way the community has embraced it. Someone posted a complaint on a local Facebook group about a traffic holdup (in fact, despite rather nightmarish logistics of closing down 13 miles of roads in a London suburb for a morning, real problems are very few and far between), and it was overwhelmed by a huge flood of responses, mostly from people who are not regular runners, completely positive about what an amazing community event it is - Ealing has really taken EHM to its heart.
In short: Well organised, friendly and challenging 10k trail run In full: Sharon Bryan and the team from Hatch Warren Runners did a fab job with this inaugural run. It was well organised with a great atmosphere. The terrain was challenging without being gruelling and the sun shone pretty much the whole way after a night of rain. Will definitely sign up again. Date of review: September 26, 2016
In short: Fast, flat course, excellent organisation and enthusiastic marshalls In full: This is the second time I've run the Barnstaple HM. The weather was a little windy this year, but the rain more or less held off so conditions were pretty good for it. The course is flat (some undulation coming out of Fremington Quay and along the road before rejoining the Tarka Trail) and great PB potential. It ran smoothy and all the marshalls were enthusiastic and gave words of encouragement as we went past. Quite a few locals on the route too, although the 5 miles or so back along the Tarka trail was mentally tough as there was no support and it seems to stretch on forever. Nice medal at the end, and the T shirt was given out before the race and is technical and a decent female fit. Definitely a race I'll put in my diary for each year - especially as I got a PB! Date of review: September 26, 2016
In short: Superb organisation for a community led event In full: The good folk of Ealing have a gem of a race snaking through their streets & parks that they should truly feel proud of.
The organisation is seamless and the volunteers both knowledgeable and helpful. I love that the local community comes out in force to cheer on the runners, with some of the churches along the route manning water stations.
Easily my favourite race of the year and long may it continue. Date of review: September 26, 2016
In short: Lovely race, except for the hill at the end In full: Lovely stroll along the coast but a huge hill at mile 12.5 that is a sprint finish killer. May well do it next year. Date of review: September 26, 2016
In short: Glorious off road 10k with a few hills. In full: Event had 3 classes, 5k, 10k and 10k cani-cross. I did the cani-cross with Beans. The cani-cross race stared 5 minutes behind the 10k main race. Three major climbs but super views over Dorset at the top. Water at 2.5 and 7.5k. A kits bag at the finish with a water bottle. Plenty of marshals on the course. Date of review: September 26, 2016
In short: Another great run from the Great Run team In full: I thought the whole event was very slick in its operation; obviously the organisers have lifted the entire planning section from other ‘Great Run’ events and plonked it in Bristol.
The start area was well organised, and all the volunteers were very helpful. This was particularly noteworthy because I'd managed to leave home without my race number, something that was very quickly sorted by a very nice lady on the event information desk.
Bag drop was good and controlled by some very polite young people from the air cadets who called everyone sir or Ma’am. They stamped your number to indicate that you’d dropped off a bag and checked your bib number against the tag on the bag to ensure you only picked up your own bag.
I particularly appreciated the staggered start by using 'Waves', I thought that this reduced congestion on the course and allowed the other athletes to get the racing hares out of the way and so enhance everyone’s experience. As always you get athletes in the wrong pen/wave dependent on predicted finish times, however I started at the rear of the first wave and didn’t notice too many people falling behind so it must have worked well.
The course was OK, although if I was to criticise it would be the number of twists and turns, however I accept that it's a city event and these things are to be expected. There was a short section on cobblestone which once wet were challenging but running out under the suspension bridge was a nice touch. The course is advertised as fast and flat, it’s be noted that there were one or two ‘rises’ but nothing you could actually call a hill.
I will admit that had the race ben any more expensive then I probably wouldn’t have entered, which would have been a shame because all in all I thought it was a very well put together event. It has to be remembered that there was an awful lot of road closures in order to get the route through the city centre which goes some way to explaining the cost.
In short: Nice run, well run, let's do it again in 2017 In full: Just wanted to say a big thank you for a lovely day. I feel it went very well and your "hatchers" were splendid in all their efforts and support all around the course. Well done to you and all. Great atmosphere, brilliantly marshalled by the Hatchers. A superb 1st effort and long may it continue. Date of review: September 26, 2016
In short: Potentially very good. Ruined by crap organisation. In full: I won't go into the problems with getting there - no need to repeat. Started late so felt like I rushed it. Shame it was so badly organised as the route itself was quite good and lots of local support. Not sure I would do this one again - unless the organisers get their act together. Date of review: September 26, 2016
In short: 2 hills too far In full: A decent set up, lots of parking if you get there in good time. Secure bag drop, changing rooms, and a warm up en-masse. The course is a two lap half marathon, through leafy suburb with small parks and a canal as constant features. The two complaints for me are, the hill at the 5 & 11 mile point is just unnecessary.Its a good lace for people to cheer, but no fun as a runner, especially second time around, so no chance of a PB.
The other complaint may show whats changed from 20 years ago when i first ran races. There are clearly defined starting brackets with visible signs for runners to line up, in this race there were way too many people either deluding theirselves, or just plain ignoring them. In the first 3 miles i overtook people who i saw finish 30 mins after me, and people walking already. Come on guys & girls you're blocking the narrow paths by being selfish, stop it. Date of review: September 26, 2016
In short: The race itself - great Before and after - appalling In full: The organisers completely cocked up the traffic arrangements and have compounded their error by handling the post-event fury so ineptly. This is a great shame because the actual race is a good one and the support throughout the town was excellent. They won't get many returning runners next year though, following this shambles. Date of review: September 26, 2016
In short: Other race organisers should take a page out of LBRC's book - this is how a race should be marshalled. In full: The organisation of this race is exemplary. They have gathered together so many volunteers who do their job in a friendly and efficient manner. From the time you arrive and are guided to your car parking space you know you're in safe hands. The marshals on the course are very vocal and supportive, which over this undulating 10 miles is a real help. The most impressive organisation is the way runners are marshalled over couple of fairly busy roads - loads of marshals ensuring the runners cross safely and without having to worry about the traffic themselves.
This was the second year I have entered this race and it did seem hillier than I remember. Still, whilst the course is 'lumpy', with its infamous sting in the tail around mile 9, it is still possible to run a good time.
The finishers technical t-shirt is good quality and very comfortable to sea, you could end up paying much more than the entry fee for a similar quality shirt in a store. Date of review: September 26, 2016