In full: I thought the organisation was very good for such a mass participation event. A lot of the criticisms in the RW feedback arise from individuals being selfish - parking inconsiderately, not starting in their correct wave etc - and the sheer logistics of managing 20,000+ people in a city centre location obviously asks for patience on everyone's part. I made a weekend of it, travelling down from Bristol and staying overnight. After the race I was able to return to my hotel, shower and change, take in an excellent 3 course French meal at the Kitsch N D'Or before enjoying a stroll around the historic docks. By the time I left for home the traffic was moving freely out of town. As for the race itself, I must say I found the sea breeze welcoming in the heat, as I suffered in the unseasonably high temperature, and the last 2 miles along the front were the high point of my race. Disappointed to miss my target time of 85 mins by over 3 minutes, but I enjoyed the fantastic atmosphere and support along the course. A reasonable goody bag as reward, and a slick exit (on foot) from the course. This event must cost a small fortune to put on, so I don't begrudge the entry fee. Well done, Portsmouth City Council. Date of review: October 27, 2009
In short: Big race with big race feel In full: My 13th GSR and I never tire of running around Portsmouth - I'll be back next year.
I learnt from last year that parking on Southsea Common is farcical, so for the first time I parked on a road closeby and 'paid and displayed' which was only slightly more expensive than parking on the Common - but without the huge delays getting out.
Not sure what happened to the 'wave' system, as the was no delay between 'A,B & C's' - which was strange as it advertised as such and ultimatley was needed to stretch the field out to avoid bunching and allow an easier passage for faster runners to get by those who were classifed in the wrong wave.
In short: Sunny for once, but you'd think they'd sort the parking... In full: This remains a great fast race. A pancake flat course, we had sunshine this year which brought out the crowds - great stuff.
The big wind coming off the coast is always a challenge for the tired legs, but is less of a problem in dry weather.
If this is the 20th GSR however, why make hundreds of cars leave through just one exit? Worse, why allow cars to start using other exits, only to later mysteriously decide to close them, with runners still anxious to leave? Yes, perhaps I should take the train next time - but I think the parking attendants could do better... (no criticism of the enthusiastic race marshals though)! Date of review: October 26, 2009
In short: If you ignore the wind, it's a great race! In full: I was on for a PB but unfortunately the wind in the last 2 miles completely sapped me! Overall it was a good race with lovely conditions (apart from the wind!) and great support. From reading everyone else's comments, I think I was the only person who moved myself back a couple of waves at the start to try and be more realistic. Still we're all champions to finish and well done to everyone who made it to the finish line! Date of review: October 26, 2009
In short: Pompey is my second home! In full: After spending 3 years at uni in Portsmouth I finally got round to entering the South run last year 5 years after leaving! After a 1hr 33min run last year my aim was to remember the course and beat that, 2 days in bed with the flu and my chances of even making the start line looked slim. With the aim of just making it round my hopes of a good time weren't high. After latching onto the 1hr 45min pace setter I was surprised when not only did she overtake the 1hr 40m pace setter but then 7 miles in strolled past the 1hr 35m one to drag me home in 1hr 30m absolutely overjoyed. After running the Great North run as well this year my preference out of the 2 is definately Portsmouth, but I could be biased!
The free Bupa sports massage at the end was something I missed last time and was a great find. Date of review: October 26, 2009
In short: A highly enjoyable race and course but........ In full: as mentioned by other runners spent the first 2 miles dodging in out of slower runners/walkers who had quite clearly not been allocated to the correct starting wave. That said, it is probably to be expected for such a large event with so many places allocated to charities. The last couple of miles was a killer into the wind. Support was brilliant all of the way around the course and quick entry/exity to the baggage area was great. Date of review: October 26, 2009
In short: A Great Race with a Great Atmosphere In full: Getting out of the car park was horrendous! I do love this race though. The sun was shining which allowed many more supporters to come out and support than the previous year. The wind along the last two miles is always an unpleasant factor to this race. The crowds are great at certain points along the route. It would be nice to get more for your money though. Date of review: October 26, 2009
In short: Good race nicely organised In full: This is my third time for the Great South and I love it. Good atomsphere from runners and crowds. Even had the hairs on the back of my neck stand on end this year while running around.
I have entered for 2010 but definitely expensive at £36. If this goes any higher I will have to rethink on whether to enter which would be a shame. Mind you they were saying next year is the 21st year so perhaps we will get something really good in the goody bag!
Come on Brendan, stop seeing this as a cash cow and do it for the runners.
In short: You don't quite get what you pay for, but I do still love it... In full: Glad that I opted to travel by train, but the train was pretty crowded, so if there's any way of ensuring that some extra trains are provided to convert the local drivers...?
Not sure the waves were brilliantly well organised, as Orange Wave A just seemed to be 'good club runners' without no indication of timings. I keep on hoping race organisers will read these reviews and put up pace boards, but I don't think they will. We will all have to keep on guessing!
Finish area seemed to work well and water stations were efficient. Sensible to provide a shower during the race as it was surprisingly warm for the end of October.
Pretty good goody bag - medal, t-shirt, energy drink, water, snack bar, etc. Still a bit confused about why herbal lozenges and fisherman's friends are targetting runners as a potential market, but it's no stranger than yet another jar of cranberry sauce, I suppose.
No, it's not great value for money, but those races are the club races which I adore. You do this race because it's fun and slick.
They could probably use some of my £36 to get a few more portaloos, though... Date of review: October 26, 2009