In short: Good one again In full: Nicely organised once again and the weather held off for the most part. Pesky cows got in the way on one part of the course obscuring the left turn - all part of the fun. Good belnd of paces and abilities with the 12, 18, marathon and ultra runners all mixing it up Date of review: July 17, 2011
In short: Race organisation was very good. It's a Challenge innit? In full: Hassle-free parking; food and drink en route; food and drink afterwards. A choice of 4 distances.
It's a trail "race" (don't expect a PB though), so you need to find your own way with the detailed route description. You cannot really blame the organisers if you do not read the instructions. And don't rely on following other runners either. People's brains tend you melt a bit after 20+ miles so trying to concentrate on the route when tired is all part of the fun.
I tried the Ultra as the marathon route is getting familiar. I blew up a bit near the end. Never again, which I guess really means: maybe next year? Thank you FVS again for organising this gem. Date of review: July 17, 2011
In short: If you like getting lost in unfamiliar surroundings with a less than useless map, four A4 pages of badly written directions this race is for you otherwise cross it off your marathon calendar In full: Date of review: July 17, 2011
In full: Initial thoughts about the given directions were they were too wordy and would be confusing to read on the move. Once you got used to them they were really well written and accurate, maybe bullet points rather than paragraphs would be better. A real ultra. No signs on the route (other than a couple of "beware runners in road" driver warning signs), so navigation required, just how it should be on an ultra marathon. Testing, lumpy (no huge hills) predominantly off road...superbly well thought out course. Thank you. Too many pink hats and too few blue hats for momentos, but that's a small gripe. Barbeque at the end was (in my opinion) a masterstroke! Thanks very much, if I can I'll be back next year. Date of review: July 17, 2011
In short: Welcoming well organised and relaxed race In full: Thank you Fairlands Valley Spartans for my first navigational race, and my first race over 15 miles. I did the 18 mile option and thoroughly enjoyed run/walking it. Low pressure, very supportive, great instructions and fantastic food at the end. The only very minor blips were the horrible pink baseball caps and the absence of bread pudding at the finish (I'd been saving myself!) Thanks again. Date of review: July 17, 2011
In short: 50k isa good addition to this race In full: Havng run the marathon last year I knew what to expect. The 50k version took in much of the marathon for the first half but a new route for the second. Flat ultras bring their own challenges and for seasoned hill runners, the relentless lack of change of pace had some of us a little fazed. Relentless forward progress was the name of the game today and in between the showers the sun came out and with the regular checkpoints festooned with bread pudding, I didn't eat much else for the journey. Great to catch up with old friends and to make new ones too. The baseball cap at the end was not the greatest idea, perhaps a t-shirt or a medalwould have been somthing more thoughtful. Having said that, a good race at a time when the calendar is not that congested. Well done marshalls. Date of review: July 17, 2011
In short: GREAT FUN...DEFINETELY A RUN NOT A RACE. In full: Do it even if its just once, great fun, checkpoints turned into picnics & social gatherings, plenty of refreshments & food, many thanks to everyone involved. Date of review: July 22, 2010
In short: a nice day around hertfordshire In full: I alsways approach races with directions rather than way markers with some intrepidation as I often get a little lost. This was a low key affair and once out of the new-town hell hole of stevenage the tracks and byways with rolling vistas of cornfields and woodlands were very pleasing on the eye. The checkpoints were well manned and well stocked with a scrumptious bread and butter pudding and always plenty of water, juice, cereal bars and sweets. Many events could learn a lot from this !!! and after a fabulous meander through the countryside passing wave 1 of runners and chatting to all of the friendly people on the way it was back to real like in the town-planning experiment they call stevenage. Will be back next year Date of review: July 20, 2010