In short: Great race, challenging course with support to rival any race I've done. In full: I entered this race on a whim as I was passing through the area on the weekend of the race. I'm so glad that I did as it was a superb race. Fantastically well organised with great facilities at the start/finish area. Generous feed stations along the route. It's pretty hilly but the atmosphere is great fun, I'd recommend this race to anyone. The support out in the villages was awesome - the locals did the area proud. Sign up for this one you won't regret it and you also get a nice tech t-shirt and medal. Date of review: October 6, 2014
In short: So much potential but needs better organisation In full: Very undulating course, definately not one for a PB. However the scenery and relatively small field make this an ideal alternative to some of the big city races. However a few things could be improved: utter madness to start the 10k race just as the half marathon runners were still coming around at the 4 mile mark. Whatever rythm you had got into was instantly halted as you just ran into a mass of starters, causing many runners to weave off the tarmac onto the side banks, scattering spectators along the way. 1 hour and 20 mins to exit the car park at the end took the gloss off what for me was an enjoyable run all said. Small point - but they could make more of an effort with the medal, being as it is a generic BHF medal. Date of review: October 6, 2014
In short: Great atmosphere. In full: Well organised and friendly half. It's a bit hilly, but surprisingly quick despite this. There's great support along the route. I'll be doing it again. Date of review: October 6, 2014
In short: A very well organised race, with a very friendly atmosphere In full: Conditions for this multi terrain race were perfect. Dry and sunny but not too hot. Marshalls were friendly and encouraging, and water station at the start of the climb at 5k was welcome. Also top marks to the helpers serving tea and cake which went down well.
It was a nice touch having the Mayor giving out the trophy cups, and I and a club mate both received one. It was our first time at this race and we will return next year, hopefully with more club members.
It was a shame that there were not more runners, especially considering the perfect weather. Date of review: October 6, 2014
In short: Challenging but fantastic! In full: It's a tough course - it feels like you're going uphill for the first 7km, but the descent for the final two is wonderful! Scenery gorgeous, marshals excellent, organisation perfect, atmosphere fantastic, support superb. Free beer at the end and cakes and drinks on sale at race HQ at very reasonable prices. Absolutely loved it and will definitely return next year. Date of review: October 6, 2014
In short: Curate's egg run - half lovely tow path, but half terrible road run In full: Considering it was the 1st time this event has taken place was surprised at how many runners had entered - very big entry!
Which meant a very crowded, confused start and then 5miles of running along a busy A road with no pavements on the side most runners used(not me). To be honest I'm surprised they got a race license and the race adjudicator needs to address this if the race takes place again.
Also, no mention of "No Headphones" and a very high percentage of runners around me where wearing them, dodging through traffic! They need protecting from themselves!
Tow path part was fine, it was what I entered for, but running us past the finish line at 10miles to do a 3mile loop back, bit unkind!
Finally - it was a lovely day for a run, but, should it have been more like Saturday, i.e. heavy rain, finishing in a field with the baggage area open to the elements, no changing facilities except going under the bridge, means this race has potential to be a miserable one.
Don't think I'll bother again. Date of review: October 6, 2014
In short: Surprisingly scenic route but could be better organised In full: At the start of the race you run through a car park which narrows very quickly there are posts and fences that come at you through a crowd and was, I thought, quite dangerous. There was no warning about this pre race. There was also a point early on there a big 10k sign was at the left of the course but as you got nearer there was an arrow pointing right meaning that lots of runners went to the left and there was lots of criss crossing between 5 and 10k runners. The sign could have been cleared. Late on there was a road crossing where I struggled to get across and there was a marshall right there just staring into space not even acknowledging me. The medal was also very low quality. Those things made me not particularly enjoy the race but there were good elements. The route was through some of the nice countryside parts of walsall, the course had a couple of decent hills but nothing too challenging. There was also a nice pre race atmosphere and there were lots of charity runners which was nice to see. It seemed a higher proportion than normal were in charity t-shirts. I might run again if I wanted to do a run on that weekend as its local. Im surprised the run isnt organised better considering its been established for so long. Date of review: October 6, 2014
In short: Well supported, well organised event, with plenty of hills... In full: Good organisation. I liked being able to collect my number the day before. Large amounts of free parking, and easy to get out after the event too. Plenty of support from villagers en-route, and nice to see the local running clubs all supporting each other. Plenty of drink stattions with bottled water. Nice medal and T-Shirt. Date of review: October 6, 2014
In short: Great Event - Flawless Organisation In full: Having completed the Chester Half Marathon earlier in the year, I knew roughly what to expect, and I was not disappointed. Everything was smooth as clockwork. The route went through some nice scenic villages with lots of local support, although the section through the town centre at the start was way too crowded, so much so that it was impossible to take in the sights as you had to watch your feet the whole time. There were plenty of water stations & lots of support, especially towards the end. The second big hill near the end was a nasty surprise (they only mentioned the first one) which seemed to finish lots of people off! I am lucky to live locally so I also attended most of the monthly training runs, which were an excellent bonus. I would recommend them to anyone considering running next year - don't be shy as there is a real friendly atmosphere & no pressure to overdo it. Overall, a fantastic event that is a credit to Chester - well done Chris & Andy and everyone else involved.
In short: Superlative! In full: I ran the Sunday race with my amazing daughter Hollie - the 1st lady home!! - and loved it to bits. The sun shone, the Derbyshire countryside sparkled and it was headlong from start to finish. This is the ultimate feel-good race. We started in waves to avoid congestion - it worked a treat - and compared to the road the trail was so much easier on the legs. We had to watch out for an army of cyclists and dog-walkers - and even tree-cutters! - as the morning wore on. But I've got to say that after years of racing all over the UK and dozens of races this is right up there with the very best. Bring on next year, we can't wait! Date of review: October 6, 2014
In short: Great race In full: My first marathon and I chose Chester as the half marathons that I have done there were excellent. The marathon was similarly extremely well and thoughtfully organised in a good running spirit. Everything was covered from pre race free training runs, a great venue, fantastic marshalls and outstanding support along the route on closed roads. Thank you to everyone involved. Date of review: October 6, 2014
In short: Full marks. I would recommend this one to first timers and to those looking for a fast time. In full: Definitely the best organised marathon of the 17 that I have completed. The metric marathoners were not a hindrance to me us, as rather than being in the way too much, it gave us a much needed boost as we overtook some of them. Not a large number of supporters out cheering but they did a good job keeping us motivated. Shame we can't also award them top marks for also organising perfect weather! PB for me, if you hadn't already guessed.
In short: A cheeky race, great run and I'll be back! In full: A great run and superbly organised. There are lots of marshals who are always friendly and supportive. You are told the course is challenging and it doesn't let you down, it's on par with the best fell run in the country (but a bit warmer) a great rewarding challenge. Date of review: October 5, 2014
In short: Wonderful race, credit to the town, can't wait for next year! In full: As usual the organization for this event is brilliant - information provided well before, able to collect race number the day before, excellent hi vis technical running shirt included, and in addition they threw in some not too hot sunny weather, a challenging hilly course starting in Basingstoke town, but winding up and down traffic free country lanes, plentiful water stations, and appreciative supporters even in the remoter parts of the course. New this year were some very friendly and supportive pace runners to help those trying to achieve milestone times. A tricky cours for PBs due to the hills but that didn't reduce my enjoyment. I loved it and will probably sign up again for next year. Basingstoke should be very proud of this event and its organizers should continue developing this event while not changing all the things that worked wonderfully once again this year. Date of review: October 5, 2014
In short: Great support In full: Great weather and picturesque course. Few hills so no PB potential but after the first one the rest didn't seem too bad. I've run 30+ halfs and I don't remember the last one that was so well supported. Very well organised and no issues with parking. Date of review: October 5, 2014
In short: Well organised once it got going! In full: Really enjoyed this, I must have just got thru before the 10k started, there were issues for the HM runners at the end weaving passed the 10k runners but nothing major. There were hills but nothing to steep, it did however feel that all of 5-10 miles was on a gradual incline. Just if the organisers do read I do have a few small grumbles: 1. Parking, it took 30 odd minutes to get parked for no apparent reason. Good job I arrived early. 2. Charging spectators is a bit out of order, if it was a couple of quid then fair enough. I don't see what difference spectators were to people walking there dog and there was no system, it seemed only honest people paid as there were ways around it. 3. I know it's a charity but more people would wear the t-shirt if it was a technical t-shirt, even if it was a couple of quid more, people can use again. This would make it more of a 'sea of red'. Small grumbles but really enjoyed it, thanks!!! Date of review: October 5, 2014
In short: Great friendly organisation. picturesque course In full: Third time of running. Was a bit worried it would be too hot with full sun but nice cooling breeze. Challenging up the hills from 2 to 5 miles but lovely run down for the last 2 miles. Really friendly and well organised, good support from the Villagers. Date of review: October 5, 2014