In short: Despite the weather and unacceptable timing chip system, not a bad race. In full: Could tell there was going to be trouble with the timing chips from the huge number you heard bouncing off the tarmac in the first couple of miles - mine lasted until mile 5. Marshalls were very good and considering the weather there was a fair amount of support around. Drinks in cups is never a good idea unless you are running a primary school sports day or kids party. Last mile or so uphill was very hard even though it didn't look very steep. All in all a lot of money raised for a worthy charity. Date of review: October 13, 2013
In short: Chip timing disaster. All feels a bit amateurish In full: 3 big reasons I won't be back: 1. Chip timing. The system was useless. Even without the fact the whole system stopped working, lots of runners had their chips fall off the back of their numbers. Bit embarrassing to say the least for a big event. 2. Water. In my mind small cups of water every 3-4 miles is not sufficient for a marathon. Fortunately is was cool and raining this year, but I would have massively struggled on a dry milder day. Really hard to drink on the run too. 3. Banned headphones. I assume its for insurance purposes, but I never run without music in training so find it really dull without it for a marathon distance.
On the plus side the marshals were good on the whole and baggage seemed well organised Date of review: October 13, 2013
In short: A wet day but a nice course - the hill at the end seemed less steep than usual! In full: I like this race, and this was my third time running it. A nice combination of town and rural, with a (relatively) small and friendly feel, its the antidote to London where you can't escape the din! The route is not lightning fast, and yes the last mile is mostly uphill, but its still reasonably quick and I've now set two PBs there. The Marshalling is excellent, and there's enough local support to give you a lft when you need it. Lots of cars honking as they drive past on the partially closed roads and people waving out the window. Other aspects of the organisation could use a rethink - sending out race packs ahead of time would be nice, and the website is a bit sparse. Overall though I'll definitely be coming back - its one of my favourite marathons to run, and that's the important thing. Date of review: October 13, 2013
In short: After 20 years of running this was the race I got my best time yet In full: 2012 was the third time I ran this race. 2011 was the full and 2010 the half. Given it is a city race is has a lot of great parks and countryside to look at after the first few miles. I thought the organisers did a great job. there are pockets of crowds to cheer you on. But it is very flat most of the way around apart from the last 3/4 of a mile which is uphill. Leicester is not London, but it's a really great marathon. Speaking to people at the end several had achieved a PB and almost all said they'd be back again in 2013. Worth serious consideration if you are running an autumn marathon. Date of review: May 25, 2013
In short: Average In full: Leicester is my birth town (long since a Londoner) and having done London a few times, and numerous half marathons, decided to give this one a go (half due to training timetable issues).
Course okay. Well, a little dull I suspect but for me it was a trip down memory lane so quite interesting. Marshals good and friendly, and nothing on the organisational side to pick too much fault with – apart from the finishers' tent thing which was dreadful. You have all of Victoria Park, why funnel people through claustrophobic hell?
My one big negative. Why oh why ban MP3s? There is absolutely NO EVIDENCE at all that they in any way endanger safety and most of us train with them. Most events allow them and they would surely be universally banned if they were a liability. I can only assume this is a personal choice of the race director. I will not be back next year because of this. For an event trying to maximise entires for charity this is a shame (and by the way, the online entry form doesn't mention this, it's only the post entry stuff that makes you aware of this; bad planning or do they realise it will put you off and therefore try to take your money before they tell you?) Date of review: November 3, 2012
In short: Well organised & marshalled - fantastic event with distances for all abilities In full: I really enjoyed this race through town, park & country - starting & finishing in Victoria Park. The organisation was excellent and it was very well signed & marshalled, not too crowded so ideal for a good time. Good support especially at start & finish & through town - very vocal & encouraging. Tough uphill finish along New Walk but otherwise flat so opportunity of a PB, I would highly recommend this event. Date of review: October 22, 2012
In short: Nice race, poor organisation In full: A decent 'local' race with some reasonable scenery on fairly flat roads. There were some negative points. Sort these out and this could become more attractive to more runners.
The administation of the race was very poor, and the web site content was out of date and lead to confusion. The timing clock went off at least 90s aheasd of the gun. The 14.5 mile marker was placed before the 14mile marker. Lots of little things like this detract from a great day. The marshall were great, although one or two did not clearly mark the direction. This is a problem in small races where the field is strung out.
A good race that could be a great race. Date of review: October 21, 2012
In short: Well marshalled marathon In full: Thoroughly enjoyed. Got a pb (knocked 47 mins off my 2011 London marathon time-altho I had had a mare there! hence why I opted for a quieter one this time!)Extremely well marshalled. Much prefer to get bottle of water rather than cups-I got more down my front than in my mouth. Fair amount of support en route. Lots of differing scenery-loved Watermead, not sure about bemused shoppers. More slight undulations than I'd bargained for...and altho I'd walked up New Walk (final slightly uphill finishing mile) the day before and decided it was nothing to be worried about....it is tiring at end of 26 miles! Stayed whole weekend-people of Leicester were friendly. Stayed at Holiday Inn: clean, cheap & pool! If I attempt any further marathons...I'd def do this one again. Date of review: October 18, 2012
In short: Nice. Could be better, but nice. In full: I'd done the half here a few years ago and went for the full this year as a last minute decision, entered with less than 2 weeks to go, which cost more, but fair enough and the price was still okay. I'd agree with what people say generally about the start, smooth enough and running comfortably very quickly after the gun. Boring scenery for the first couple of miles and the downhill then the flyover, along with the first mile marker being way out, mess with pacing, but the rest of the markers were spot on. Busy for the first six miles, but room enough, then it gets a bit quiet. Route through the countryside was beautiful with sporadic crowds giving plenty of support. Water, gels, Hi5 plentiful and helpers and marshalls were great. (What happens if a train goes past at a crossing I was lucky enough not to discover). I found the route twisty in places, especially once back on the half course and it feels all uphill at the end (I hate that underpass). Shoppers in general seemed bemused by the runners coming through, but some of the other runners were installed with a beer outside cafes and were great! Yes, there were some problems with e-mails and the website could be better, the route could be less twisty and be all downhill, but I think the organisers have done really well with what they've got and should be congratulated for a really nice race. Thanks again to the marshalls and helpers. Only one real complaint - I finished in top third of marathon runners and already they had only medium sized T-shirts left. A shame not to be able to wear it :-(.
In short: Home Marathon so ill try not to be biased but VERY good all round. In full: Having done a couple of GNRs and the London Marathon I wanted to experience a smaller local event with a small field so that it was more a race than a "fun-run" like the above races tend to be now-a-days.
This was my first time at Leicester, I turned up a bit late but managed to see Claire Lomas (the London Marathon Bionic Woman) up close and certainly got a sense of atmosphere on Viccy Park which was more than I was expecting.
The course was mainly flat, the odd short hill and a flyover within the first couple of miles and out into the country side. The half splits away from the full at about 6 miles and turns back into the city and the field thins out massively so you are on your own. There are a couple of short hills, nothing major, and level crossings however I wasn't held up at any of these - I imagine that some unlucky people would have been though. One dodgy part was running down an alleyway between some houses.
POSITIVES Well organised on the day and everything you needed at the finish and nothing you didn't. Water, banana, t-shirt (nice design) and medal. Free massages were also on offer and the que was fairly short too.
Marshals were absolutely fantastic, as we're the cadets at the water stations who were very encouraging and also informative.
Local support, whilst thin on the ground, was excellent by the people who where there, especially in the cafes and pubs. This isn't the GNR or London so I wonder why people expect huge crowds. I had more support here than I did in the Great Manchester Run that's for sure.
Fast course, whilst its not busy you can push on for speed, especially between miles 6-19. I was not in the best shape going into this race and expected to struggle, which I did but still managed to knock 13mins off my PB.
NEGATIVES Website is rubbish, doesn't have much info and looks amateur.
Disqualification for wearing headphones - come on, stupid rule. Thousands of runners train in traffic with headphones without the benefit of marshals controlling traffic so I think we should be able to cope in a controlled race situation.
Lack of publicity pre-race. This is a huge opportunity for Leicester to show itself off and this event could be a LOT bigger if they just but a bit of effort into publicising it a bit more. That way you wouldn't get a load of confused shoppers wondering what the hell is going on!
Silver medals for half/bronze for full? Hmmm, not sure about that, either have a neutral colour scheme or Gold for full and silver for half.
All in all a very good race, enjoyed it and it exceeded expectations, I'd give it a strong 8/10 and will be back next year. Date of review: October 16, 2012