In short: Great atmosphere, good course, but way too many people! In full: The atmosphere was absolutely superb - everyone was buzzing in anticipation. But I was really surprised by the lack of organisation of people. Spectators were packed in with the runners all the way through the start area and as a result it was so busy at the roadside that you couldn't even get into the start lanes if you didn't arrive really early. Expected the field to thin out, but it didn't and the constant need to avoid the walkers took its toll. Expected the hills to be steeper han they were - so that was a relief. But the stories are true - it really is the longest finishing straight you can imagine. Overall, a great day out and with a little experience under my belt I'll enjoy more next year as I'll approach the race with a different attitude - its a brilliant charity event that gets all sorts of people running. If Brendan can 50,000 people raising money for charity that is brilliant - but it is too many without better organsiation at the start! Date of review: September 20, 2005
In short: Surprisingly underwhelmed In full: Was looking forward to this race as an ex-local, learned my 3-point turns down at Riverside! Certainly a nostalgia trip for me, but the route doesn't make the most of Stirling's landmarks or scenery and long stretches through blighted wasteground were dull and dispiriting. Route was fairly flat and fast, though, and view approaching the Wallace Monument was inspiring. The start was a bit chaotic, cramped, usual scramble for loos, and I didn't hear any ten or five minute announcements. Pack set off very fast, obviously a lot of serious 10k runners around, and my pacing went to pot. No-one's problem but mine, and it produced a PB so shouldn't complain! Marshalling was good and traffic well controlled. Ran out of small T-shirts early and friend/fellow runner disagrees with official timings on website. Apart from that, an ok race. Perhaps I'm just grumpy because 10k isn't turning out to be my distance as I'd hoped!
In short: 2 many people - hard 2 get going. Be interesting 2 see know how far I actually ran with the weaving in and out. I was knackered by 11 miles. Sunshine in the N E - a rarity! Probably do it again as I run it for a local NE charity. Date of review: September 20, 2005
In short: Nice, well-organised race, but don't underestimate the "undulations"! In full: Despite a hot day this was an enjoyable race, but I wish the race description had said "hilly" rather than "undulating" as I would have prepared myself better for the uphill sections. The scenery did not disappoint though and the frequent water and sponge stations were very welcome. Date of review: September 20, 2005
In short: Great day, Spent an hour trying to find water at start, water stops should be more frequent, great atmosphere, should be a staggered start, tagging great idea In full: My second time - Bad points - Spent an hour trying to find water at start - had too beg from Organiser at start, Should be a staggered start, First water station too far away should have been at 2mile marker, At finish organisers more interested about getting chip off ankle than giving a well deserved bottle of water. Too crowded. Good points - Great atmosphere, crowds fantastic helping out with drinks, Ice pops etc, Red arrows made the hair on your neck stand up while running over tyne bridge. Date of review: September 20, 2005
In short: 2nd time I've done the GNR, beat last year by 20 minutes. Will definitely do it again and again and again. A tragedy about the four deaths, my heart and prayers go out to the families of the runners. In full: I truly feel this is one of the best races in the UK. Yes the weather was very hot, hotter than forecast, so I feel the number of water stations was adequate. Though running out of weater at the 8 mile station did cause a lot of discomfort for people. What made a difference was the locals spraying water and handing out ice pops. The young children at the side of the road finding half used bottles and handing them out to runners was great. As usually the atmosphere was excellent, totally made up for the start and constantly having to weaving in and out around walkers. I saw walkers literally just after the start line. Unlike last year the race did not thin our at all, though being 20 minutes faster than last year may have made a difference. I will definitely do the GNR again, so what if I may not get a PB, who said runnig was about PBs? Date of review: September 20, 2005
In short: Well worth the effort! In full: First time ever running a trail and now am a converted road runner. Enjoyed the challenge of scampering over rocks, near cliffs, scattered slate, bogs, stiles,and avoiding colliding with ramblers. The scenery was unimaginable and worth every sore muscle. Well organized and looking foward to April. Date of review: September 20, 2005
In short: The must do half Marathon. In full: Biggest gripe official pace setters at 2hrs & 1hrs 45mins standing at the 1hr 5mins marker.With the number of people following them causing a major obstruction right at the front of the start. Still a special event. Will attempt to do it again with no pretentions of a PB.
In short: Why did nobody tell me that ther were so many hills? In full: Loved it, maiden voyage to the GNR. Was buzzing at the start with the singing and "the Ashes". Was v. surprised by the weather and the profile of the course, at every corner it seemed the runners infront were running up hill. Felt anxious at the amount of casualites at the roadside throughout the race. For us poor plodders (who still managed to run the whole course) there was no water left at the 8 mile station - v. poor organisation. Had it not been for the kids spectating who picked up half full bottles and dished them out, there might have been more of us in serious trouble. But, thank God, me and mine all made it home safe and well, with slow times, but a wonderful experience. Am wrecked today. Thoughts to the families of those who died x Date of review: September 19, 2005
In short: At the time and especially after 9 miles didn't think so, but looking back would say i did have a good time and was very enjoyable In full: Was a very long day as was at the start for 8, bags on bus for 9 and waiting for nearly 2 hours to start. But there's no option with 50,000 people. Organisation for so many people was superb and thanks to everyone who was there helping with everything. Said straight away that wouldn't do it again, but am now looking forward to next year when I might enjoy it a bit more. Date of review: September 19, 2005
In short: Grown too big? In full: The water stations need to be earlier. The first seemed to be around 5 miles. On a hot day this was too late. I think the procong is getting steep and the numbers too many. The atmosphere is great but don't expect a PB Date of review: September 19, 2005
In short: The people of Newcastle, Gateshead and South Shields make this race ! In full: Considering the size of the entry I think it was probably as well organised as it could be. In my opinion this event is not for the serious runner looking for a PB as there are far to many people in general and far to many slow runners towards the front in particular. It is the support from the locals that makes this race a memorable experience. Initially I was a little disappointed with my time of 1:34:26 but when considering the heat and the fact that 4 poor souls collapsed and died, it does put things into perspective. If I come back next year I will forget about times and just accept the event for what it is, a huge charity fundrasing event and there's nothing wrong with that. Date of review: September 19, 2005