In short: Small issue with route didn't spoil a good race In full: The bad reviews are pretty harsh. We had an excellent morning and no doubt the organisers will learn from this mistake. That aside the run was good, with excellent pb potential.
We look forward to next years Headington 5 Date of review: September 3, 2013
In short: Race organisers & marshals are human too! In full: OK, no secret about the fact that *something* went wrong with the course directions. I was no less disheartened than anyone else to see two packs of runners joining a part of the course from different directions, meaning that I ran about 90% of the race knowing that I wasn't going to do the full distance.
HOWEVER: I would like to think that anyone who had a grumble or a real issue with this, AND who had stayed to hear the race director's and referee's report and heartfelt apologies, would have given them the benefit of the doubt. They were obviously incredibly embarrassed and saddened by the error (however it came about), and probably aware of how much a decent race can be affected by a few bad RW reviews! It was obvious that the race team, crew, and marshals had all worked very hard on producing a good event and were disappointed not to have been able to deliver their goal.
Surely the test with a new race is not necessarily whether everything goes 100% smoothly first time but rather how any mistakes are dealt with and how lessons are learned for future events. I am sure that anyone who runs the 2014 Headington 5 will be in for a treat, and I would like to think that for this year’s there will be very few who were truly unhappy enough to actually ask for a refund. I certainly won’t be asking for one.
Biggest plusses: excellent goody bag and friendly and encouraging marshals.
Biggest minus: the “pinch-point” at the corner of a field near the start – it was too early on for runners to be spread out, and perhaps tweaks could be made to ensure that there isn’t the same bunching up at that point another year. Date of review: September 2, 2013
In short: Unfortunate route error but really enjoyed it nonetheless In full: I felt really sorry for the organisers that there was a problem with the marshaling of the route, because it was otherwise superbly organised and very welcoming. I look forward to doing it again next year. Date of review: September 1, 2013
In short: seems a bit harsh to blame the cycle marshall.... In full: He and the rest of us would've been less likely to take a wrong turn if there had been more/better positioned road marshalls. However, otherwise a very good race with excellent cakes, Date of review: September 1, 2013
In short: Short but super speedy In full: Yes, we went the wrong way and yes, I was a bit annoyed about this once I had figured out that I must have missed a bit (realisation occurred when I saw mile 4) BUT having missed seeing the 1 mile marker, my pace was quicker than normal and I'm giving myself a big pat on the back for a 4.5 mile PB ;-) Venue spot on with changing rooms, parking, left baggage, cake and hot drinks aplenty. Date of review: September 1, 2013
In short: A friendly welcoming race with a great atmosphere In full: I won't dwell too much on the course error that saw me and other run only 4.4 rather than the 5 miles. I for one was glad of the 4 or 5 minutes off!
I understand this is the first race run for a while and given the great facilities, friendly welcome, generous goody bag, cakes and bacon sarnies will be back to run the full 5 next year. Date of review: September 1, 2013
In short: Fun race that will be talked about for quite a while! In full: Well done HRR - a race enjoyed by all the people I spoke to and wasn't spoilt by the unplanned diversion! Great weather, pleasant course pretty much all off road, excellent spread of homemade goodies at race HQ, a different set of mementos to the usual, and nice friendly atmosphere. And all proceeds to the worthy local sports charity OXSRAD. Remember that if you consider asking for a refund... The course improvisation gave us a laugh & a good talking point at the end! A memorable race!! Keep up the good work - more orienteering classes may be necessary before the next one in 2014! Date of review: September 1, 2013
In short: This is a great race - people shouldn't let the one-off issue put them off entering in future. In full: The detour early on in the race was unfortunate as the organisers did a wonderful job otherwise - it would be a shame for people to overlook this. I received an email confirming my entry (as I'd entered quite late), there was a detailed information booklet with the race entry, parking was easy and the marshals were cheerful & supportive. The goody-bag was great - face cream, face wash, shower gel, mug, water, cereal bar and a free sample of joint gel - this made the race better value than I'd originally thought. Excellent cakes, bacon butties and drinks were available to buy. It is a quick course - just a couple of underpasses that are very mild. Perhaps some slower runners may be put off by the 1 hour time limit - think this should be increased - even just by 10-15 minutes - as this put a couple of my friends off entering. Date of review: September 1, 2013
In short: Bit short, but a good morning. In full: I think the first 2 reviewers have been very harsh. Mr Burns, if you contact the race director, he will be happy to refund your entry fee...
Yes the course was short, and it was a mistake by the cycle marshall, but dont let it detract from the organisation, the friendly marshalls, more cake than you can shake a stick at and the glorious weather!
This was the first time this race has been done, and it suffered a teething problem. Lessons will have been learnt and it wont happen again. If you are going to judge an entire club on one error, then i think that is very sad. The race director offered a full apology, and the race referee reiterated it. It was a mistake. Get over it.
In short: Comments from Headington 5 race organisers In full: Thank you to all runners who participated in the Headington 5. Unfortunately the race took a wrong turning because of a specific error and ended up being about 4.4 miles long rather than the advertised 5 miles. As the race organisers we very much regret this error and will learn from it.
As stated by the race referee at the presentation we will give a full refund to anyone who feels this is appropriate. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to follow this up. We are sorry that Steve Burns was misinformed and will be in touch with him.
Despite what happened, we have also received positive feedback from a number of runners who enjoyed the race