In short: Fantastic! In full: A brilliant event that was very well organised and executed. Plenty of drinks along the way and a nice flat course for a PB. A little disapointing to do a long 'out and back' on the same road, but this was forgotten when re-entering Bristol centre. The crowds were brilliant and as the roads are a little narrow it feels like the crowds are right on top of you! A most enjoyable event and will certainly be back here in favour of the Great North Run anytime. Date of review: October 10, 2005
In short: Actual race was ok, BUT......... In full: Enjoyed actually running the race but the before and after organisation let it down. The expected fishing time boards were too low down so could not be seen once a few people had lined up. I was in the 2.30+ band but didn't see it until it was too late to move forward. The 2.00 - 2.30 box was only about 20 yards long. There was no dicernable PA at the start so it was not possible to remind people to be realistic about starting position so had to make way through walkers within the 1st half mile. Enjoyed the course and would like to thank all the marshalls and first aiders for their help and encouragement to runners. The nature of the course though does mean that the front runners in the marathon will catch up the middle of the half marathon field. I was lucky that the lead vehicle caught me up at the back of the castle but what happened in the cycle/footpath between Blackweir and North road? The finish was chaotic. I was directed up the first set of steps to collect medal etc. This brought you out in the massage area and into a massive queue to get the medal, banana, chocolate and water. But no, the water was back down at pitch side, after the set of steps that I was directed up. As I had plenty in my bag in the secure storage area it wasn't worth going against the flow to try to get a bottle. I stayed on to watch the Marathon finish and that was inspiring, but I think that there should have been a marshallat the top of the ramp warning slower half marathon runners to keep to one side on the lap around the pitch. Despite all the above I did enjoy the event and plan to be back next year. Date of review: October 10, 2005
In short: Very good New York Marathon training run In full: Well organised and a lovely route for some of the way. The only gripe would be that some of the marshalls didn't control the traffic at some junctions even though they were stood watching. Almost got hit by a scooter and got a shrug of the shoulders from the official! Good water and energy drinks stations. A good flat course for quick time. The area gets busy however as you run the second lap and cars are a problem. Date of review: October 10, 2005
In short: My first half In full: As this was my first half and being local (Newport) it was a special day for me. Great seeing the barrage and the 2 parks. The paving just before the castle was hideous on the feet though!
Well organised on the whole I thought. Bit of a drama at the end with the queues but I thoroughly enjoyed it. Date of review: October 10, 2005
In short: A grand tour of Cardiff's diverse landscape (City, industrial, maritime, residential, parklands and stadium) In full: A special race for me as this was my first marathon. As it was my home town, I was able to safely judge my race in relation to local landmarks.
In terms of entries, it seemed dominated by club runners - it seemed a bit like a spill over race for unsuccessful London marathon applicants? So, as a keen but relatively non-competetive runner, my time of 5:36 put me firmly in the Cardiff 'stragglers'.
My marathon attempt was spoiled by a cheating athlete who I can *strongly alledge* to have cheated by skipping the long run up the Cardiff barrage. He was dresed as Scooby Doo and collecting for Barnados. I'm quite sure he skipped another switch-back in the parks. He then proceeded to beat me in a sprint finish into the stadium, thereby milking the applause of well-wishers and spoiling my own race finish - I felt almost violated at the time but have cooled down since. In retrospect, this sour taste which could have been avoided by STRICT marshalling at switchbacks.
As a relative straggler I did not witness the alledged queing chaos mentioned by other runners. However, the medal / goodie bag set-up was extremely off-hand and a bit of an anti-climax. I'm not one to get wound up by this sort of thing but it was strikingly 'average' given the grandeur of the millennium stadium.
Bag deposit not 'secure' as described - but I am very trusting of runners so I wasn't really bothered by this, I always leave cards etc. at home.
On a positive note - friendly and helpful stewards, St. Johns ambulance and policing all the way round, and as I was in no real hurry and running on my own for most of the race, I made a point of thanking many of the stewards who I encountered.
Minor gripe - water bottles too small and screw-capped (glad I brought my own 1 litre squeezy bottle which I topped up with water from the stations). Date of review: October 10, 2005
In short: First-time 10 mile race for me and it was excellent! In full: Really enjoyed this race as a first-timer, I felt I pushed myself and the crowds and the other runners helped too. Small gripes: 1. couldn't see the mile markers and I don't think they were in the right place 2. Beautiful medal but would be nice if it actually said "10 miles"! 3. The wave system was good but it should be divided as to estimated times I'm definitely coming back next year - I'll be sure to put on some no-run suntan lotion though as I got slightly singed yesterday... Date of review: October 10, 2005
In short: Good fast route - organisation in the stadium needs attention In full: Great race and well marshalled, but fell apart in the stadium. Akin to an organised training run, rather than a city marathon. Date of review: October 10, 2005
In short: Good support both inside and outside of the stadium, organisation once crossed the line a bit shambolic. Spectators inside the stadium had great sight lines of the pitch but not the finish Date of review: October 10, 2005
In short: FANTASTIC, great atmosphere, weather and organisation In full: Had a fantastic weekend, stayed in Southsea Saturday night. Just a brilliant race. Nice shower! Possibly even beats 2004. One of my favourites. Date of review: October 10, 2005
In short: Millenium Stadium is a great place to finish, but waiting 40 minutes for a medal is far from ideal. Plenty of water, and well marshalled. Would recommend to anyone. Date of review: October 10, 2005
In short: Really enjoyable In full: First half marathon and would do this one again.Wasn't nice standing in a que for medal after 13.1 miles or the cobbles stone path by cardiff castle. Good support around the route though. I cant wait for next year and a faster time. Date of review: October 10, 2005