In short: Very fun and challenging trail race In full: What a race! Superb fun from start to finish. I lived in the Oxted area in my youth and felt like a big kid again running through this absolutely stunning area. I was absolutely knackered by the end but felt on top of the world at the same time. The organisation was fantastic and ran like clockwork. Would highly recommend to anyone wanting to take part in a trail race (just make sure you practice hills first). Awesome stuff! :) Date of review: October 7, 2014
In short: Great first half of the run, hilly on the back half in the latter stages In full: This was my 6th Marathon and after entering the run I spoke with a 2013 runner who advised me against it as out of the City the run was lacking atmosphere. Having done London and Berlin as 4 of my previous marathons which had significant crowds I was expecting the worst after comments from a 2013 runner, how wrong was he.... We arrived early as my 6 year old wanted to enter the mini marathon fun run (which he enjoyed and got a nice finishers medal), the runners quickly arrived and I was impressed with the tents and number portable loos. Precise instructions were given in the build up to the start. On setting off there were plenty of spectators through the city, these died off out of the City but there was plenty of countryside to look at to keep you going, we passed through a few local villages and were met with some support there as well. I chose to run alongside one of the pacemakers (Colin 3hr 45 pace), he was entertaining to say the least, he did go slightly quicker than the pace required but not by much but I did pay for this towards the end. Regular water stations along the way helped. The first half of the run was pleasant and with Colin talking to the group throughout he kept everybody going and motivated, the slighter quicker pace took its toll on me after 21 miles which made for a grim last 5, within which there were a couple of challenging hills which at the stage of the race we were at made it feel like I was running up a mountain. They would have hurt at the 12 mile stage let alone mile 24!!!! The last mile and a half took us back through the city along the river and back on to the racecourse to be met with a large crowd making the finish a special one. The stewards, organisation, medal, t-shirt and overall feel good factor made it an enjoyable day. I would recommend to others to run this event, I will be back if for no other reasons than to conquer the hills towards the end the next time around. Date of review: October 7, 2014
In short: Hilly but well worth it for the spectacular views. In full: A well organised race, on a hilly course with a few challenging slopes along the way. Amazing views over Basingstoke and beyond at around mile 10 (after the big dipper and before the drop back into Basingstoke) more than make up for the uphill struggles though. This race will never be a PB location (not for me anyway) but is defiantly one that I will keep coming back to.
In full: Really well organised, great support along the route in villages and great support from marshals. Really glad to have chosen Chester for my first marathon...a couple of interesting hills and as the saying goes saving the best for last ! Thank-you to all the marshals and everybody involved with this run, will definitely be back and would certainly recommend. Last but not least nice touch for Chris and Andy to congratulate the runners at the end. Date of review: October 7, 2014
In short: Excellent event. Venue, course, volunteers, support, organisation In full: This was my first standalone marathon (I did one as part of an ironman in July) and my prep wasn't great. But I have nothing but good things to say about this event. From arriving at the racecourse, where parking was very smooth, to the post-race massage (£5 donation), everything about this race is excellent. The organisation, the atmosphere, the course, the supporters around the villages. Even the goodie bag - were all top class. I'm not one for repeating races, as there's so many out there to try. But I would absolutely definitely recommend Chester Marathon to anyone. Fab fab race. Date of review: October 7, 2014
In short: A great marathon - lovely scenery, superbly organised. If you want to do a marathon, then i recommend this one. In full: The route starts on the race course and then through the town centre before heading out to the South of Chester through some lovely countryside and welcoming villages, which provided great support. You then head back to Chester, along the river and back to the race course to the finish - cheered all the way along the last mile or so. It's a nice route, albeit challenging, particularly with a couple of climbs at c. 24/25 miles! :-) My only mild criticism would be that the website claimed that the overall climb was 110m, whereas Garmin and Strava had it around 175m - hence i only rate it as 3/5 for PB potential. A nice challenge though! A great marathon - lovely scenery, superbly organised. If you want to do a marathon, then i recommend this one. Date of review: October 7, 2014
In short: Amazing first marathon experience In full: pace runners, event organisation, location and route, medal and t-shirt. Everything to do with this event was designed to make it memorable, and that is exactly what it will be. My first marathon, and what a choice that was, definitely doing again after I have recovered from surgery. Date of review: October 7, 2014
In short: Great Experience for 1st time Marathoner In full: This being my local Marathon, I feel very lucky to have such a well organised event on my doorstep.
I cannot fault the organisation for this, everything was spot on. I personally like how friendly, approachable and accessible the team are. It all ran like clockwork and the best pacers I have seen at any race (very visible and friendly), even down to carrying one runner over the line.
From the regular monthly prep runs, to the seminars, some with free drinks and gels at 3mile intervals it really provides the runner with a great level of support.
I even had an e-mail query with the training coach and this ended up as ongoing support via e-mail. He even invited me to a Tuesday interval training session that he hosts for Chester Tri.
I really like the personal touches that make you feel like you are important to them. Would recommend, will definitely return. Date of review: October 7, 2014
In short: friendly welcoming challenging encouraging - top notch race organisers In full: If you're local enough o attend the race training runs with the organisers - make sure you do. great insight and knowledge sharing that will assist beginners and intermediates alike. This was my first marathon in 2013 and I have done 4 this year - returning to take 16mins off my time and break 4hrs in 2014. loved it! Date of review: October 7, 2014