In short: Too many people In full: Lets start with the good points: The mile markers were spot on and very visible which meant I didn't miss a single one. Bad points: Too many people for this kind of course (very narrow in some places). This meant that even by mile 11 we were reduced to walking pace. Quite a lot of people seemed to start in the wrong place. Runners who started at the sub-1.40 marker were walking after half a mile. Not too much of a problem if only one or two do this but it also makes people move closer and closer to the start. After reading some people's comments about the amount of toilets, I must be blind! I saw queues and queues of people before the start and only about 8 loos for 16,000+ runners. The course is quite uninspiring. I chose to only do the half this year as I was so disappointed with the second half last year. Some nice parts (Lace Market, the Park) but mostly could be in any city / town race. Date of review: September 12, 2005
In short: Running almost 3 laps around the town at the start was novel but overall the route changes worked well and the cider memento was well received. In full: The real winner on the day must have been the local council with the car park costing £2.80 for 4 hours, but that's about the only gripe I can think of. Date of review: September 12, 2005
In short: Good race despite a few aspects of organisation which could be improved. In full: First marathon so when I say I enjoyed it it's a relative concept for miles 20 - 26. Good organisation, plenty of support, drinks, gels etc.
On the down side the directions to the car park were rubbish, I wasn't too keen on the bits in the second- half where the course went up on side of a row of cones and back down the other, and the price is a bit steep (but cheaper than the GNR, not difficult). Date of review: September 12, 2005
In short: Race organised well, but not the prize giving. NO mention made of the fact that it included the Devon AA Championships online, or on joining instructions sent out with number. Annoyed because I would have entered! Date of review: September 12, 2005
In short: Fantastic views - who cares about the hills? In full: A lovely route along the scenic Purbeck Way and South Coast path, passing through Corfe Castle and Worth Matravers. This is a walking event as well as a run, which meant that there was a route description and that, yes, we runners did get a bit stumped around Corfe Castle (mostly due to not reading the route description). But who cares? It's a run not a race and the views are fantastic. I will definitely be there next year! Date of review: September 12, 2005
In short: Excellent first timer or for PB. In full: Having travelled from Sheffield to this race (only my second ever 10k) I found this race to be well worth the visit. The course is an excellent course for first-timers and for people looking for a PB as the course is nearly all flat. Medal is OK. Tee shirt very good quality. Well organised. Critiscms: Water station at 5k far too small for any runner trying for a PB in the middle of the pack to get a drink. Date of review: September 12, 2005
In short: Nice conditions, well organised, great support. In full: I enjoyed this a lot more that last year where I started too fast and found the Derby road hill at 8 miles a killer. Paced myself a lot better and didn't find it nearly as tough. Great support from all around the course and even managed to get a PB which was an added bonus. Perfect conditions for running made it enjoyable. Date of review: September 12, 2005
In short: Tough race - great scenery, back next year! In full: Fantastic atmosphere - and wonderful location. I imagine the weather can really make or break this race.....blazing sunshine made it tougher, but the views...oh the views!
In short: Well organised, and for a very good cause In full: Very flat course across the grass and through the trees. However, points lost because of out-of-place distance markers. Several people had messages on their backs explaining the reasons for racing, which was very touching. Date of review: September 12, 2005
In short: Meh In full: If this wasn't my hometown race I don't think I would have bothered, to be honest, and if I take part next year it'll be solely because it's so convenient.
I don't want to take anything away from the organisers who put on a near faultless race. But...
- The cost (Where does the money go? £30 plus if you buy the t-shirt) - The support is good at the start/finish but almost absent elsewhere, probably because most of the route is away from residential roads (understandably, given the numbers taking part) - Fairly uninspiring route, only a tiny part through the Lace Market and Wollaton Park stand out - Surely it's reached its capacity, so crowded for the first two or three miles Date of review: September 12, 2005
In short: Good course, great race In full: My first half marathon. I found it to be well-organised with lots of support from both spectators and marshalls. Definitely be doing it again next year. Date of review: September 12, 2005
In short: True multiterrain race, nice atmosphere, well organised In full: The route is very well thought out, with only brief spells of road (which are actually rather welcome after the sand dunes!) It's a good place to come to with family, incidentally, as the pinewoods also host a red squirrel sanctuary. Didn't notice any red squirrels on the way round, but there's 10Ks for you. Date of review: September 12, 2005
In short: First class organisation, great part of the country, friendly natives In full: Plenty of loos. Weather was overcast and with a cool breeze. Absolutely perfect. Water and drinks were enough to drown in. Ran out of marathon medals but have promised to mail one within six weeks. Date of review: September 12, 2005