In short: Great marshalling made this a good race In full: I got there an hour early, as advised and parked in the Co-Op (like many other runners, which the shop were probably not too happy about). However, there were plenty of nearby streets to park on if you wanted to be more public spirited.
The race start and finish were a bit odd. The start was about 50yds down the street from the school entrance where the start banner actually was, and there didn't seem to be a clear finishing "line". Having said that, those were only very minor issues, and the race itself went through some nice bits of Yorkshire countryside (although I could probably have done without the coking plant in the first mile). Having read the forums on RW, I was aware that there was going to be a hill between 4 and 5 miles, but not ready for it lasting almost a mile! (well, maybe a slight exageration there). The gentler hill up to mile 6 was probably worse though - coming as close to the finish as it did, and it nearly did finish me!
The race itself was notable for very good marshalling (without the normal Police help, it should be noted), and their support - particularly in the last mile or so was encouraging when I was flagging. Top marks to the marshals! Date of review: November 14, 2005
In short: Gently undulating course, very well organised. In full: We had a fair turnout from our club and about half got PBs (not for me though). I was led to believe that the course would be pancake flat (which it isn't) - but that's no bad thing as flat can be tough as it's monotonous. The last three miles, however, are flat - and if you're struggling for pace (as I was) they're not much fun.
The field was probably the right size for the course, meaning that for those near the middle of the pack, there was sufficient room to run - if only some of the bigger (greedier?) event organisers would take heed? Actually having the space to run makes it all much more enjoyable!
Lovely countryside (though a surprising number of cars on the 'quiet' country lanes), with an impressive 4 water stations and good marshalling. As has been mentioned elsewhere - nice cakes at the end, warm showers and a race mug (a useful memento that will serve as a better reminder than a medal that disappears into a drawer!).
Thanks to the organisers - especially the PA who gave a mention to every finisher (I think!).
I'm sure we'll be back... and next time sub-90 will be mine...
In short: An absolute hoot! Don't do it for speed - do it for the love of mud! In full: I did this for the first time (and as my first cx) in 2003 when we'd had that long, hot dry summer..... Great, I thought - I just need to practice my hills a bit for next time and I'll be fine.... HA! 2005 has proved to be my first proper xc! The mud, the water, the cow poo! What fun! I just had the best - if knackering - time. I'll definately be back for more next year! Date of review: November 14, 2005
In short: Great friendly atmosphere at the station before and after the race. Although two tough hills very rewarding race with great views. Will certainly do it again next year and will recommend it to friends. Date of review: November 14, 2005
In short: You've got to do it !!! In full: Judging by the finishing times of the first runners back there must have been some serious runners in this race. But, in the main, everybodybody who I bumped into was there to have a "fun" time. Never before have I queued for 20 minutes to take a 10 minute walk in a ditch. I'm doing it again next year, make sure you do too :-D Date of review: November 14, 2005
In short: Very muddy and much fun, but bottlenecks hinder progress and PB! In full: They must remove the ditch section near the start next year. Over 1,000 runners funnelling into single file meant at least a 20 minute delay for most. Date of review: November 14, 2005