In short: A total let down to the midlands In full: As a person travelling from just down the road in Coventry it was disappointing to have to use the car for a climate change race however club members and I were excited about this new(ish) race and decided to enter it. What a joke. I as a runner I challenged members of peoples families who were blocking up the start area to hold coats etc. There was no one policing it at all and that accounted for much of the terrible start area. People who haven’t been to a race this big before need help to know where to go and where not to go. The bottle neck after the start of the race is fairly common in a race of this size and wasn’t really that much of a big deal at the point I was at. The biggest problem was at the finish where I queued for about 6 minutes (I know cos I watched the clock tick them by) to CROSS the finish line. No need for a chip time - it was wrong too. A complete shambles of a race that could have been the pride of the midlands. Maybe Brum can take some tips from better local races like Kenilworth and Coventry who LIMIT the numbers to that which they know they can cope with. Seriously guys - what were you thinking?????????????
In short: Start crowded, with poor use of pens. Course narrowed into tight bend immediately causing immediate stop. Finish also dreadful, with no run off. leadng to back-up at finish line. Please fix next year. Please. Date of review: October 25, 2010
In short: Why can't this race be properly organised. Three years on and the same mistakes are being made. In full: As a local this is the third year in a row I have run this race and yet again Birmingham Council show they just can't get it right. As everyone has mentioned the start was terrible, "running" across the start line then grinding to a halt as the bottleneck began. Also, I found the course much more crowded than last year, and the segregation of slower runners has to be addressed as I kept running into groups of people slowly walking down the course. Last year there were marshalls actively moving people in the wrong sections - what happened this year?? I didn't get caught up in the chaos at the end but friends who also ran the race did and again have the organiseres learned nothing from previous years??
I found this years course to be an improvement on previous years but can the council please address the issues outlined by so many people. Has this race got too big too quickly?? Date of review: October 25, 2010
In short: A shame for Birmingham - this should be a brilliant race In full: It felt like this half marathon was an inconvenience to Birmingham rather than embracing it. Starting at 9am was impossible for public transport users (not so green). Chaos at start and finish is well documented - maybe they could also get some people to actually hand the water out at the water stations. Loved the guy DJ'ing in his garden at about 9 miles!! It's all good apart from the rubbish organisation. Date of review: October 25, 2010
In short: Says it all about Birmingham city council lack of organizational abilities In full: I ran to support my city's half marathon and it was great being supported by friends and family along the route, which wasn't as dull as I had expected. The start and finish was a farce- knowing they had turned down the local professional marshalling team, I had expected it to be poorly organised. Maybe the council will realise that it is more than a fun run and needs professional organisation to reflect well on the city. Date of review: October 25, 2010
In short: Overcrowded event in a welcoming city In full: I was dissappointed with this years event. The crowd control and course marshalling was poor.
For example there were not enough clear signs for runners to get to the start, even though I arrived next to the start line 15 minutes before the start, there was no physical way to get to my alloted bay. There was a bottle neck approx 25 meters after the start (why was there not a narrower start line?) and there were runners queuing to finish the race loosing all the benefit of chip timing. Parts of the course were poory marshalled leading to competitors cutting up to 10 meters of the course at various corners.
Despite these hiccups (which could be sorted) this event is still worth return. Obvious effort has gone into the organsing and all helpers were excellent.
This event has a positive vibe and I'd love for it to continue. Date of review: October 25, 2010
In short: Not bad - but could do better In full: For the c.15000 people that took part, this could have been a frustrating event. This was my first HM and on home turf, so I had almost no idea what to expect.
Travel: not good. No trains coming into B'ham until after 9am (start time). No clear signs for parking. No info on website about suitable buses & where they would stop due to raceday road closures.
Start & Finish: Chaotic, but good natured.
Route: Mostly flat. Not sure what some people are moaning about re: hills. There were some inclines & 2/3 v.short rises. No problems.
Water/drinks stations: Obvious where they were and marked on route map.
Overall: I will do this again, but do hope things could be done better. Will the BCC improve things? Find out next year!! Date of review: October 25, 2010
In short: A classic example why you should never let a council organise anything! In full: Totally agree with other postings that this was a fiasco. Being local I managed to avoid a lot of the travel issues but the start and finish were a joke. Only good point was the support along the route. This event reflects badly on Birmingham - tried mailing the organisers this morning and, guess what, their address is down. The event needs to be taken over by a professional company such as those that organise Reading, GNR etc. Maybe something positive will come out of the Public spending Review and this event will be outsourced!