In short: Great race, planning & atmosphere, but let down by poor post-race organisationn In full: Race arrival, departure from Winchester to Salisbury and organisation at the Start was great. Weather improved through the run, and going was good with a well-marked route, enthusiatic and supportive marshalls (thank you), and lots of drink stations.
At the Finish, bags collected OK from some very helpful Scouts, but the organisation to collect a T-shirt or Medal left a lot to be desired. Sorry, it takes a lot for me to moan, but I stood there in a slow queue for 40 minutes, straight from the Finish, getting cold and wanting something to eat. Why did the provision of every runners's T-shirts (and Medals) have to revolve around one (stressed) guy? I only wanted a Medal - they don't come in various sizes! And when the Scouts tried to help the situation by providing T-shirts to runners they got told to stop - 'and follow proper procedure'! This area needs some attention please.
I'd also support some other comments about how a policeman could have helped the exit from the school. That would be much appreciated.
Overall though, thanks to the organisers and volunteers for a great day out. Date of review: September 30, 2007
In short: Excellent race, but poor organisation In full: The race itself was excellent. Great views, great organisation and great support. The course is hard, but that is part of the appeal. The excellent organisation was let down by the chaos at the end. We had to queue for 30 minutes to be given a T shirt, and then the 3.30 bus was full, meaning that after a lot of confusion we had to wait another hour and a half before we could return to the start and retrieve our cars. Date of review: September 30, 2007
In short: Great start venue in Salisbury with plenty of enjoyable hils! In full: Weather improved throughout rain became bright and a little sunny perfect marathon conditons. Seems harder than Winchester to Salisbury but makes a nice change as I`ve done it 9 times the other way! Date of review: September 30, 2007
In short: Well marshalled course with some great scenery. However having completed the first half of the marathon we then had to battle our way through the mass of half marathon starters. Date of review: September 30, 2007
In short: Lovely cross country run, but far more challenging than the usual direction. In full: Why the long queue for picking up a medal or Tshirt? It was the same at the finish last year, but I've never seen this system anywhere else? Spoils the otherwise excellent orgnaisation. Date of review: September 30, 2007
In short: Excellent race and brilliant organisation. In full: First time I have done this and did it as a relay team. Next year would love to do the whole thing. Brilliant organsition. Well marked and well marshalled course. Thank you. And a lovely medal. Date of review: September 30, 2007
In short: This must be one of the best runs in the country - it is tough - but gives you a real sense of achievement In full: I really enjoyed this run - even though the hills stopped me in my tracks more than once and the finish seemed an eternity away. At the end I said the immortal words 'never again' and this year it took me a couple of hours before I was uttering 'when I said never, I didn't really mean it...'.
The marshalling and support was excellent from start to finish - A big thank you to everyone who helped out and to Paul and all the organisers.
The start and finish venues were excellent. Despite a bit of rain early on, the course was really good under foot (no way were cross country trainers required). And thanks to the weather this year we were able to enjoy the scenery a bit more.
No doubt the knockers will be on-line talking about the queue for the medal or t-shirt and admittedly, this is something for the organisers to address. But overall this is a great event and has left me with a really good feel-good factor and sense of achievement. Date of review: September 30, 2007
In short: Event -wise, this is a great route and with countless marshalls and frequent water stations. Let down by overly-bureaucratic organisation though. In full: The change in point-to point route taking you from Salisbury to Winchester to celebrate the 10th anniversary produced an excellent marathon encompassing a scenic mainly off-road run. The recent rain left the course soft under foot and ideal for those wearing offroad shoes (maybe a little slippery for those wear road shoes) and the cool temperatures after the early rain were ideal running conditions.
For an offroad event, the Rotary Clubs laid on numerous marshals who were well placed on an already expertly marked route, and extrenely friendly and cheerful without exception. Drinks stations were also well placed and well-stocked.
Loved the course support especially around the relay changeover points, and the relay and half-marathon runners helped to motivate me especially as I tired badly after 20 miles, and although overtaking was difficult on the narrow sections, runners were very courteous to allowing you to pass where possible.
The event falls down by being over-bureaucratic. I accept that alot of preparation has to go into an event that's point to point, involving c.1500 runners, transportation of runners from finish/start before/after, and many over elements that I'm not aware of. However, I would like to ask why race numbers aren't posted out to runners in advance (to accompany the race info and bus tickets)? - this would save alot of the long queues pre-race. Also, why do we have to queue to have our names ticked off again when we board the buses? Then, the post-race queues for medals and tee-shirts left many waiting for as long as 30mins - not ideal after running a tough event - okay, you had the choice of medal or t-shirt but more lists to be ticked left me exasperated rather than collecting these on finishing say through an appropriate funnel? Showers were ice-cold, the queue for tea/coffee was a queue too many, and don't get me started on the amount of time to exit the car park? - a police officer could have assisted here.
I'm sorry for the criticism but I'm trying to be constructive. This event may have become too successful and too large, but I accept that it is an important source of fundraising for a good cause.
Anyway, I enjoyed the run, and thanks to everyone that helped out in what was a great event in the main. Date of review: September 30, 2007