In short: Hard, hilly, tough but good In full: This was my fifth consecutive running of this race, which has become a 'must do' race each year, such is its significance.
As always, it turns out to be a superb fitness test both physically and mentally, and psychologically too. The townsfolk of Hastings always lend their support to the race, especially at Harley Shute Road and at the top of Queensway to applaud the significant efforts made by all taking part, and at many points along The Ridge. Well done to the scouts manning the drinks stations and the tea tent at the finish, to the friendly marshals and all concerned with the organisation, especially Hastings Lions Club. Wonderful horse brass memento as usual.
Next year? You bet, despite new aches and pains!! Date of review: March 23, 2010
In short: Never thought I would run a PB on this course..... In full: Not for the faint-hearted! Most of the first 5 miles are up hill - but then again what goes up must...... Date of review: March 23, 2010
In short: Fantastic Support, but organisation could be better In full: The support from spectators marks this out from other half-marathons. Quite simply the support was exceptional!
Scenery-wise there is one spot where views open up over the countryside. Unfortunately it was a really grey day so the view was a little disappointing. The same applies to running along the sea front. It would have been more appealing in better weather.
There is potential for a personal best as the second half of the course should be pretty fast, but only if you are towards the front of the pack; otherwise slow runners mixed in with faster runners will slow you down.
Atmosphere would have scored better but for the weather - it was just too gray/overcast.
The course is a mixture of challenging and frustrating. The hill around three-six miles adds challenge without being too tough. From about seven/eight miles until the sea front is a little frustrating as the course twists and turns so much you are never quite sure where you are going. It is also a mixture of downhill and uphill which adds to the frustration.
Organisation-wise this could have been better. After 26 years some things are right, but there is no supervised baggage area (despite what it says in the RW listing), and like many races the ordering of runners according to finish times is at best optional. Even the pacers started in the wrong places. I started in the correct place for my finishing time and only caught up with the pacers for that time at the 4 mile mark. In addition, the area around the start/finish line is just to crowded for the number of runners/spectators.
Overall I would be tempted to enter again. As with all races there were some frustrations, but many of these could be improved relatively easily.
In short: The hills make it hurt but.... In full: Having decided to try a half marathon for the first time perhaps a flat one would have been a good idea. However great support and decent weather made it a great experience, despite a niggle on the homeward stretch that meant adding 20 minutes to the time......makes it a pb to beat! Date of review: March 23, 2010
In short: A good race and got a PB! In full: I enjoyed the race some challenging hills during 1st half of the race. But second half of the race enables you to go alot faster. I managed to get a PB which i was happy with. I think the organisers should of had a goody bag or a t-shirt to go with the brass medal instead of having to pay for a t-shirt. But should be back next year fingers crossed to the race again. Date of review: March 22, 2010
In full: Always brilliant - this half is one of the best I have entered. The whole town make it one of their 'big' days of the year and get behind the runners all over the course. Now run this several times the hills probably do get easier as you find it easier to pace yourself espceially in the first half. The seafront was actually easy this time and no injuries to worry about. Overall always worth doing and well done to Eric Hardwick for all his hardwork over the years. Date of review: March 22, 2010
In short: Great 1st Half Marathon In full: This was my 1st Half and I'd been warned how hard the hills were. Maybe because of this I didn't find it quite so bad as I thought it would be. The crowd were fantastic, the marshalls did a great job as did the scouts at the water stations. Only one negative - I was bursting for the loo most of the way round. Thought there might have been a portaloo somewhere !!!! Never mind, it probably made me fun faster to get to the finish anyway....
Definitely going to be back next year to improve my time and beat the hills. Date of review: March 22, 2010