In short: Fantastic route but some super steep bits! In full: The race was one lap through the beautiful countryside. This year was fabulous weather which made it all the more enjoyable. This was my first half marathon and even though there were a couple of incredibly steep hills (one that was about a mile long!) the race was very enjoyable. Some of the race was through the town and there were people out cheering you on, some of it was through empty country lanes. The marshalls were great (even someone at the finish line to take the timer chip off your ankle for you)- plus this year you got a banana (reveiws said last year you got an orange) and a medal at the end- my favourite combination!). The only tiny issue I had is that as I was one of the slower runners by the time I got back to the finish (2hr30ish) I nearly went the wrong way as there was a big crowd of people leaving and the marshalls weren't clear, plus they had run out of goody bags. They were more in "packing up" mode. But the race started on time, there were toilets/ changing rooms etc and everyone was very friendly. The running out of things at the end is just a small point. Date of review: March 8, 2010
In short: Beautiful weather, great scenery, challenging hills In full: A great race, ideal warm up for marathons later in the year. A few testing hills that are challenging, but plenty of downhill sections to recover. Not much PB potential, but beautiful surroundings take your mind off the clock. Only suggestion for next year would be to have the fun run start either well before the HM or afterwards. It got pretty congested around the 3-4 mile mark, both from fun runners and cars - I guess the weather brought out the day trippers . Otherwise a great event, well done to the organisers.
Also well done to the Stig, who overtook me at Ashridge House Date of review: March 8, 2010
In full: Only problems other than the traffic on the way round were suicidal cyclists and being held at a junction for a few seconds. The hills were easier than I remembered (must be the training paying off!) but was still glad to turn the corner for home! Will do it again as it so local, but woudl be nice to get more than just a plain medal and a banana in return for the entry fee... Date of review: March 8, 2010
In short: The scenery far outweighs the hills. In full: The weather was cold enough to freeze the balls off a brass monkey, but a couple of miles in to this race I hardly noticed. Challenging early on with a few hills in miles 2 and 3, the course gives way to beautiful scenery with some great flat and downhill sections later on (including a fly-by of the awesome Ashridge House).
Second best bit? The last section, which is half a mile or so of downhill with the cricket club (start and finish point) in plain view.
The best bit? There's a bar at the cricket club. Forget your ReGo, pint of London Pride for me.
Thoroughly enjoyed it, will most likely be back next year.
(oh yeah - the rubbish bits were 1) sharing parts of the course with 5 year olds doing the fun run - this should have been done at a separate time, and 2) sharing tight country lanes with motorists - most were patient but you always get the odd pillock.) Date of review: March 8, 2010
In short: Challenging In full: The hills made this a challenging race but the countryside made it worth the effort. Running with the traffics was a bit frightening and frustrating - It'd be nice if this could be avoided in future. I struggled to hear the chap on the loud-speaker at the start of the race and didn't enjoy the massive queue for the ladies loos. All in all a well organised race which i'd consider doing again. Date of review: March 8, 2010
In short: Superb weather & nice scenery In full: Well organised event, although let down by the merging of the 'fun' runners at approx. 4 miles. This caused a lot of congestion as most seemed unaware of faster Half Marathon runners coming through and spread out across the route making it very difficult to pass in places with on-coming traffic aswell! Suggestion; perhaps start the 'fun' runners at least 30 mins BEFORE the Half M runners OR after them. Alternatively, ask the Marshalls to ensure that 'fun' runners are kept to one side of the route and enforce this. Otherwise, nice scenery on quiet back roads with a few 'challenging' climbs which doesn't make it PB potential. Thanks to all involved in organising and managing the event. Well done in such cold weather. Date of review: March 8, 2010
In short: Traffic was a big problem In full: Saw a woman driver do a three point turn in the midst of the runners very nearly hitting a lady runner.Cars everywhere at one stage. Felt unsafe.Shame as other than that the race was very enjoyable and challenging Date of review: March 8, 2010