In short: Great race. Not to be missed In full: Fantastic race. Small enough to feel part of a running community and large enough to be part of something big. With a stadium finish to round it off. Date of review: May 8, 2013
In short: Excellent atmos and organisation In full: Although the scenery was very nice, it was quite samey, and over that distance, maybe there could have been the potential for more variety.
It was my first marathon, so no PB hunting but I had an idea what time to expect. On the day, the heat put paid to a fast time, along with numerous short hills as we emerged from underpasses, and over bridges.
But the heat probably contibuted to the best atmopshere I've ever experienced, particularly at Willen Lakeside, and in and around the stadium at the end. Names on numbers meant that many spectators cheered you on by name, many children requesting and getting high fives (the hand gesture, not the energy gel), clusters of spectators enjoying the sun on grass verges away from the main areas, a few mini entertainment spots along the way, kids offering to spray runners with water pistols, a guy in the street with his garden hose out doing the same, very enthusiastic marshalls at every corner. I could go on about the atmos.
Exellent organisation, not a single unclear / unmanned corner, every mile marker visible, every drinks station well manned and signposted. Perhaps less obvious were the toilet stops, I don't think I noticed them all. Couldn't quite hear the PA system at the start, and the pacemakers didn't have the promised balloons.
Goody bag was unspectacular, but decent. The medal is excellent, then there was a banana, a mars bar, a nice cotton t-shirt (only Large size), and a bottle of water.
The stadium started to empty before the final finishers were in, it was a shame there was no other in-stadium ents to keep spectators in till the end.
Some good photos were made available, but only from a couple of good spots. I'm sure a couple of other spots would have made good photo points. The video at the finish line doesn't have the clock visible.
On the whole, excellent! Thanks to everyone involved. Date of review: May 8, 2013
In short: Great support and special finish in the MK Dons stadium. In full: Very hot day that the organisers can't help but the bridges and hills in the last 6 miles meant this course isn't flat to undulating and such a description is a little false. Despite that, I really enjoyed the run, support was great (what a good idea to print names on the bibs) and the stadium finish was excellent. Would do this again if I wasn't pb hunting. Date of review: May 8, 2013