In short: A must do, challenging and brilliantly organised event In full: From start to finish this was a very well organised event, well supported, generous aid stations and second to none marshalling (and plenty of them) with words of encouragement and support throughout. Hats of to the Rotary Club. Date of review: September 18, 2015
In short: Glad I chose it as my first marathon In full: I ran my first full marathon ever at Farnham Pilgrim. It just isn't your run-of the mill 42.2 km. With an elevation of 1781 ft and a route comprising tarmac, gravel, steps, sand, mud, busy road crossings, wooden stiles, and gates, it is a mini obstacle course. However, there are no of reasons for doing this 1. Small, friendly race - no crushing crowds, easy to mingle with friends and family anytime you want, last minute entry, frequent personal updates on fb 2. Tough, so focus is on completing - no point chasing for a fast time if the route is that challenging. I just trained to finish it in good shape. Had a time in mind, but didn't kill myself trying to chase it 3. Great participant to volunteer ratio - Really enthusiastic and helpful volunteers. In fact, the no of water stops are a psychological barrier to not stopping. There are too many of them. After 30 km, you are just looking for an excuse to stop. 4. Trail is much more stimulating and rewarding, and less damaging to your body than road.
Overall, I joined it a lot. Didn't chat with a lot of runners on the way, but at the end, found a nice lady to talk to and we ran for 1 km together.
At the end, ran to the finish line with my daughter in tow.
Notes 1. This race is not to set a PB (see obstacles). This single track in many places, so you can't overtake easily. 2. Yes, there was an issue with the markers like others have said. I and bunch of others did get lost, then a runner came who knew the way and we followed him. Yes, volunteers can definitely be increased or positioned better. 3. Make it clearer that runners can be dropped from cars closer to the start line. The parking is bit further away, would have saved us some time. 4. Is it not possible to create an online certificate for all finishers that people can download? Would be a nice memento. Date of review: September 15, 2015
In short: Well organized. Good people. Beautiful place. Great challenge. In full: With 2,000ft of ascent, beautiful scenery, and great organization this event is challenging, professionally managed, friendly and relaxed. I really enjoyed my day. I hope my 2nd marathon will be as good as this. Date of review: September 15, 2015
In short: Heaven and hell In full: Ran the half last year and upgraded to the full for 2015. Very glad I trained hard on the route, especially the climb to St Martha's which is always a challenge.
Stewards were brilliant again and directions were for the most part very clear. I can picture the point where people went in the wrong direction and very nearly did the same myself. That said, the overall organisation was exemplary.
Looking forward to chasing a course PB next year. Date of review: September 15, 2015
In short: Marvellous In full: This is the second time I have done this marathon and I love it. It was one of my favourites last year and still is. The area is superb, I have been coming here for the last 30years and the hilly sand tracks are still hard but bring a smile to my face when I get to the top !! All the marshals were great and the water stops were plentiful. The sign posting was great. I still managed to stray from the track and lost a few minutes, but that was okay. I had a marvellous day, I am very grateful for all the support and will see you again next year. Well done. Date of review: September 15, 2015
In short: Simply beautiful course In full: Such an amazing collection of terrains. Sand, Tarmac, grass, track and a touch of mud. Always changing but consistently beautiful. Sorry to hear some of the leaders went the wrong way for a section. There are loads of marshals but appeared one short? Otherwise the marshals were superb - happy and helpful. Finish area is great as well, with super bacon but ties. It's a tough course but that's the price you pay for fantastic views and great downhills. May take on the marathon next year just to soak up even more of it Date of review: September 14, 2015
In short: a lovely scenic trail run In full: a great well organised race. some runners got lost but not sure how this happened as the route was well marked and plenty of marshals. Took the race easy and enjoyed the scenery and atmosphere. Date of review: September 14, 2015
In short: Did the half marathon. Loved it. In full: Entered on a whim on the Friday before the race, rocked up half an hour beforehand, fantastic organisation of bag drop and registrations. Could have done with a few more loos (but couldn't every race).
Course was fantastic: superb views, lots of variation, some mud, some sand (that was challenging), lots of single track, hills that looked scary on the race profile but were nothing compared with the Leith Hill Half. Lots of marshals, and I managed to not get lost (I feel sad for those who did - I did spot a marshal pelting to a corner, perhaps to sort that issue out, but I can't remember where on the course I was, and I'm a little confused by the whole thing). Did trip up a couple of times on road furniture/kerbs, but no damage done. Definitely doing this one again - lovely atmosphere to wait around in at the end as well. And cakes. And a brass band playing Flashdance - What a Feeling! Date of review: September 14, 2015
In short: Fantastic race - shame about the Tshirts In full: Great run - a marathon should be tough. Wonderful marshals - including the Manic Marshal on the approach to St Martha's Church. Great organisation. Only one complaint - I asked for a small T shirts, was told I had to have a medium as they had no small ones. It's labelled a Large and it's ginormous - fully 4 inches too big in chest size. Straight to the charity basket. Date of review: September 14, 2015
In short: Marshalling and route error ruined it In full: Everything was great except for a missing marshal at a crucial point. The race organisers responded saying a walker had removed a sign. My feeling is that there should have been a marshal and that blaming external factors is poor response to people who might be quite upset. For me, I was enjoying a good battle. One that was completely ruined by the bad organisation. Date of review: September 14, 2015