In short: Being a first-timer, I enjoyed the course and set a time quicker than expected. In full: On the first lap the mile markers came quite quickly and the water stops were in the right places. Only complaint would be that my goodie bag was missing its goodies Date of review: April 4, 2006
In short: very pretty run, five mile wind tunnel on return leg - extremely hard work! In full: The route was slightly different this year and it made the hills (yes there are hills on the Suffolk/Norfolk border!) more manageable. The return leg from Beccles is reasonably flat, very pretty but is a wind tunnel, even on still days. This year was VERY windy and the last 3 miles were sheer torture. All I can say is one lap was fine for me. I couldn't have done it twice for the marathon! Date of review: April 4, 2006
In short: Good warm up for london but geting too crowded so difficult to pass people on naroow sections. Signage to the start is non existant and difficult if you don't know kingston. In full: I enjoyed the event but was a bit frustrated at the bottle necks - startingthe 8m lap first seems a bit odd as it just made things more congested for faster runners. The first part of the cousre is nice by th tow path, but the road section is dull and too narrow. Well mrshalled though and friendly. Personally, I like my collection of Kingston mugs as at least they are useful rather than amedal which gathers dust or a mens XXL t-shirt which is usually big enough to house a family of 3 and as I am a ladies size 10 usually goes straight to the charity shop. this years mugs weren't as good tho as the sponsor stuff has taken over so you can't see the event. I agree the asics bag was a bit pointless and i would rather have had a bottle of water at the finish than an energy drink. But overall a nice enough race though a horribly early start if you aren't local. Date of review: April 4, 2006
In short: Excellent fun but tired and muddy! In full: In spite of walking up the hil, I ran this 3 minutes faster than my predicted time! So I suspect (like the other contributors to this page) that it was a shade less than 10k. But otherwise an excellent event. Date of review: April 4, 2006
In short: Mud Mud everywhere.. In full: Despite the weather there was a good atmosphere from all. Lots of mud (even before the race started!) Not to sure what was exactly gentle about the gentle inclines that were described though! I certainly found this race the hardest out of all I've done (Inc my half marathon) but then I'm from the fens ;) All in all I enjoyed myself and its certainly for a great cause. Date of review: April 3, 2006
In short: A great race In full: Well organised, well marshalled, great value for money, nice mug (very useful) and good prizes (I came 2nd). Good support around the course. Shame the weather intervened A PB course in better conditions. Will be back Date of review: April 3, 2006
In short: Some good points some bad In full: The positives
Good Flat fast course
The results up sunday afternoon thats excellent as uk athletics couldnt get the intercounties results up until the tuesday.
Good competition and even better support.
Perhaps overpriced deff when you consider you dont even get a t shirt. Who wants a crappy plastic medal rather than something you can actually use. I thought trying to make you but a race t shirt was daylight robbery.
On the subject of the medal as was under the impression that you got gold silver and bronze depending on your finishing position. In the past its been top 50 gold etc etc. I came 8th 32.46 and got silver. Still would have prefered a t shirt.
Obviosly got to mention the delayed start which was a shambles. once you warmed up etc you just want to get going. If the delay was just for a car on the course so be it we all no not to run into a car.
The wind in the last few k really really slowed you down but thats not the organisers fault.
k's 7 and 8 deff wrong as someine else mentioned. Mine were 3.30 then 2.50.
Some people starting on the very front line who certainly shouldnt be there n just wanted to get in the picture.
My final point and not so much one about this race but more about the current situation in general. SUB 40 MINS CONSIDERD AN ELITE START? No wonder where so far behing the africans this is simply laughable. The first marker behing the "elite" start was something like sub 1hr 10 i mean goodness sake. We foster joggers far too much these days i see too many people finish training sessions and races with smiles on their faces not grimaces like i want to see. if we ever want to catch the africans we need to all be being carried of the track at least once a week due to exhaustion. At the midland relays the other week i saw i guy finish who had run so hard hed givern himself a nose bleed. Now thats what i like to see! Date of review: April 3, 2006
In short: Certainly a challenge In full: Being advertised as a Mayor's race, I expected this to be a nice leisurely run ideal for first-timers raising money for local charities, how wrong I was.
The field was relatively small for a half marathon which meant I was effectively running on my own for most of the race with nobody within 50 yards of me so it felt a lot more like a training run than participating in a race. The fact that none of the roads were shut and meant you had to run with traffic driving up from behind you added to the feeling of it being a training run, just as later in the race when there were no marshalls meant I had to stand at the side of the road twice waiting for a chance to get across without being run over.
I was intending to do this as my last race before the London Marathon but unfortunately a bout of flu and bronchitis has meant I'm out of that race but I was hoping this would be a nice re-introduction to running, expecting it to be a fundraisers event from the name. The first 5 miles were uphill, and I mean steep hills, followed by about 2 miles steeply downhill, which meant I was completely gone by the 7 mile mark. Unfortunately there were absolutely no marshalls between the second and third water stations which meant after being too tired to really continue having to walk about 2 and a half miles to find an official - if I was too ill to walk that distance I'd have been at the mercy of passing strangers rather than race officials to help me which I thought was quite bad, especially given how tough the course was and how little warning there was of the severity of the event.
Still, being a very tough half in early April will probably give it another go as it would make a good pre-London workout, but personally I wasn't overly impressed with it as a half marathon on its own. Date of review: April 3, 2006
In short: Challenging first half marathon - especially the wind on the return leg! In full: Nice out run from the start with plenty of reasonable undulations to allow for a challenge, however, the wind on the return leg made for heavy legs at the finish - energy sapping murder! At least it was relatively flat on the way home. Impossible chance of a PB given the weather. Date of review: April 3, 2006
In short: Improved organisation from previous years. In full: Personally I did not experience the farce with the non-arrival of packs. Consequently I feel the organisation has improved from previous years and the toilets were no longer cholera hazards. However, as I travel from the North-West I will be looking for some assurance that the pack problem is a one-off.
Three things cause problems, but all runner related.
a) Why line up at the head of the field if you are not going to run more than a few yards before walking? b) Inconsiderate people throwing the water bottles in the middle of the road causing hazards for later runners. c) Why is it every year people stop to chat in the middle of the crowds trying to use the exit. Also, use some common sense, once you've struggled to leave through the crowded exit, add to your enjoyment by trying to get back into the assemble area(against the crowds). Date of review: April 3, 2006
In short: Great scenery, good course but poor organisation. Too many races in the same place, badly run water stations and the minor roads should be closed. The wind and hills in the lst 4 miles were tough but the atmosphere was good and overall worth doing. Date of review: April 3, 2006
In short: Friendly, windy, top marshalls - great Marathon prep In full: It was a very windy day and there were some exposed roads on the course. Marshalling and drinks stations were superb and offered great encouragement - thanks very much for that Date of review: April 3, 2006