In short: Delayed start let otherwise good organisation down In full: Was delighted to discover we were welcome inside the sports centre at the start, so was able to sit inside in the warm. Green Park bands were doing a grand job, would have been good to have more musicians around the course. Date of review: March 7, 2005
In short: The best pre-race toilet facilities I've seen In full: Seemed to be going well until the delayed start. Course was OK for the most part. Finish was shambolic with people wandering all over the place, nowhere to change into warm clothes and the queue for the town buses was v. long - I parked at Shire Hall, no queue for that bus!
All-in-all a good effort, but would have been a bit miffed if I'd paid the entry price, luckily I got a free entry. Date of review: March 7, 2005
In short: Well organised except for the start and finish, ran PB so wasn't too bad In full: Start was completely chaotic, with half hour delay in freezing cold weather. I ran a fairly steady 1:45 pace, starting from the back of the 'Sub 1:45' section but spent the first 5 miles continually dodging around much slower runners who had obviously started in the wrong section. Very frustrating if you are trying to run at a steady pace. In parts the course seemed too narrow for the 12,500+ runners who were taking part. Organisers should consider staggered starts to ease the flow through the narrower sections of the course. Generally good support around the course but the last 2 miles or so were quiet (except for the bands). Date of review: March 7, 2005
In short: A Good introductiom In full: It was my first half marathon and my first race. It was a cold wait at the start line but other than that I thought the organisation wasn't too bad. Get rid of the very annoying man with a microphone though! I really enjoyed the course and the support was fantastic. The end at the stadium was great although Green Park was hard work. Will be doing it again as it's my local race and have a time of 1.44 to beat! Date of review: March 7, 2005
In short: My 4th and probably my last Reading Half Marathon In full: This was my 4th and probably last Reading Half. It was my first ont the new course and the main reason I ran it.
What would transform this race from ok to great would be better organisation. Obvious statement I know but heres my view.
The Start. I parked at the station and I think was on the first bus out of there at 7:45. I arrived at the start to an empty field (this was soon to change) I did manage to get a cuppa, but wouldn't have fancied my chances if I was 20 minutes later. Could they not have got another one, 10 food vans would still not have been enough. The field soon cut up with everyone on it and started to turn into a bog, and then there was the start area. To pay the ammount of money we did, they should at least pen it off for finish times. and to get 10,000 runners through 1 or 2 gates was never going to happen smoothly.
The Course. Very easy, other than the first mile seemed like I was running downhill most of it. If you want a PB on your ChipTime you will at Reading.
The Finish. Oh dear, when I got out of the stadium, I didnt know what was happening, people collecting chips here, someone trying to give you a blanket there. Runners helping themselves to goody bags, trying to find someone with a medal to give you. Not great at all. Then you have to push you way through the masses to find the the trucks with the bags, nowhere to change into dry clothes, waiting for a bus to the station and sitting in traffic for 45 minutes.
The route, the support, the marshalls = Good everything else = not so good
In short: Unacceptable delay at start and finish In full: Organisers need to run more buses to/from the station. Having a 30 min delay at the start was out of order, given how cold it felt. On the plus side it was a fast course, so good PB potential. Date of review: March 7, 2005
In short: Nice race, low key, lovely views In full: Good move to delay the start by 30 minutes due to conditions, though i believe a mix-up around the staggered starts, some people missed the 10m start as this was changed twice and you needed to be in the hall to know this. Thank you to all the marshalls for standing out in the cold for so long. Didn't like the 8 or 9 90 degree corners plus one 180 in the last 1/2 mile or so, didnt ehlp for a sprint finish (i think i'm being a little picky here though) I shall watch out for this one next year Date of review: March 7, 2005
In short: Great location, Great organisation, but not a flat course In full: Really enjoyed myself. Got a new personal best, despite the course going up that long hill twice. Much nicer than the huge events - Less confusion at the start, beginner friendly, helpful marshalls and a nice presentation ceremony in the cafe at the end. But don't exct a new PB, unless you enjoy sprinting those downwills. A big THANK YOU to the organisers Date of review: March 7, 2005
In short: Apart from the start, an enjoyable event In full: achieved a pb. I thought the kitbag organisation was excellent. I also found out where the Richer Sounds shop is in Reading so that was a bonus Date of review: March 7, 2005
In short: Good day out In full: This was my first half and only my second race. It was a shame about the delayed start in the freezing cold but I warmed up again after a couple of miles. Other than that I thought it was really well organised.
Running down the A33 and the park at the end (after running past the finish) was a bit dull but the atmosphere was good all the way around.
Now I need to find another and improve my time :) Date of review: March 7, 2005
In short: Good easy course In full: Apart from the delayed start(If people don't arrive in time start without them!)everything went smoothly. Nice course, good support, excellent bag transfer,PB and drove straight out of official car park with no delay. When will organisers stop givinig a microphone to some old duffer before the start of races? Date of review: March 7, 2005
In short: Generally enjoyable race going through a variety of different areas. Excellent atmosphere, especially at the end when you make your way into the stadium. This was my first half marathon and it certainly inspired me to do more. Date of review: March 7, 2005
In short: Organisation let-down In full: The race was fine enough, but the delay at the start wasn't great. Even worse was the fact that energy drinks ran out at the 3rd drinks station before many runners had got through there.
The stadium finish was excellent, but miles 10-13 were quite depressing. Up to 10 miles I really enjoyed the course, though. Date of review: March 7, 2005
In short: Good flat couse, spectators and marshalls great In full: + Points. Good pb potential,Crowds,Marshalls,toilets,baggage,medal.
- points Delayed start,being hurried out of the stadium at finish,no changing area at finish,easy to miss signs, water bottles to big,and what looked like total confusion on getting out of the stadium area for cars and shuttle buses. Luckily I had a lift to the hp car park from the kind people at team spirit.(thanks Tony) This could and should be a great event. Just sort out the logistics Date of review: March 7, 2005