In short: What a fantastic race! In full: Well done to Phil and all those that helped make this such a great race. A tough course, brilliant support and atmosphere and a bit of drizzle just to make things a bit more challenging! Date of review: June 7, 2009
In short: A race that I loved from the first minute to the last! In full: Normally, it takes a few days for the merits of a great event to sink in, after the body starts to recover and forgive you for the punishment that you put it through. However, I seemed to have found an event that I can't wait to return to even as I crossing the finish line.
Firstly, the organisation was of the highest order. From the pre-event detailed information, supervised baggage, and event registration got the runners off to a relaxed and well supported start. The race route is well thought out, and having been run for a number of years, is well-tested and loved by the high number of returnees. As a rookie of the Dartmoor Discovery,I've no doubt that I will join these returnees for as long as I can run.
The route takes you around a very special area which has retained it's barren beauty, and it's very atmospheric and spiritual feel. The scenery is just so wonderful, that you accept the toughness of the hills (that hill at 6 miles was an absolute monster and I had no shame in walking part of it as part of my race strategy), and the extreme weather conditions (this year it started raining heavily after the first couple of miles and continued relentlessly until the last couple of miles!!). With the temperature dropping down to 5C, and everyone being soaked to the skin, there was a danger of hypothermia for many. The fear of this kept my walking to a minimum, and grateful that I took an extra article of clothing with me.
This event is one of the toughest that I've participated in, but the level of medical support and numbers of marshals on the course meant that there was always someone nearby if any runners got into difficulty - this gave me the comfort and confidence even when I was really suffering. There was one marshal who was travelling around the course for the very purpose of monitoring the runners, and he was there to shout encouragement by name (and to advise me to slow down when I was looking a little shakey!) when it was really needed.
For a course as remote as this, there were numerous marshals and drinks stations (with runners' own drinks ready as you passed). There was also fantastic support from local residents and friends/families of other competitors despite the filthy conditions.
A great finish with commentary from the race MC (with runner background details), and swift assistance to runners due to the cold and exhaustion (blankets, shelter, hot drinks and a vast choice of sandwiches, cakes, and biscuits). Very generous.
The glass block momento is very special and will be treasured by this runner.
Phil Hampton and the team deserve the plaudits for their hard work and dedication in staging this event, and I will be back with attire for all four seasons next year!
In short: Tough but fun In full: 4th year in a row for me. A great race. Weather awful but it just added to the challenge! Scenery hidden by rain and mist etc but again it just made it more atmospheric. One complaint; there seems to be more cars following the route each year (or was it just local traffic). With the cars constantly passing we were made to run at the very edge of the road, in the small streamlets that had formed. I also had to stop a few times to let the cars get past each other. its not the fault of the organisers though. Date of review: June 7, 2009
In short: Superb Ultra - tough but what an event ! In full: Full credit to Phil and his team, this is one of the best organised events on the calendar ! Just superb organisation.However its a tough one - once you have run this one - you will find it difficult to find any significant hills ! Date of review: January 31, 2009
In short: Who'd do FLM? In full: My first ultra and a truly fantastic event - perfect organisation, fabulous support, amazing scenery and a brilliant route. The weather was shocking, as is to be expected on Dartmoor, this just motivates you to keep running to stay warm.. I was very pleased to beat the marathon + 1/2 time prediction and also break 6 hours, and also to meet so many committed runners. Phil puts on a fantastic race, one of my best ever events. I'm converted to the way of the ultra! Date of review: June 20, 2008
In short: Fantastic race. In full: Lots of hills making this ultra one of the most challenging I've ever done, but certainly would do it again and highly recommended to others. Given that the race is held in quite a rural area, the support out on the course from other runners, locals and others was brilliant. The organisation was faultless. I loved it! A special thanks to all the marshalls and those manning the drinks stations in the atrocious weather later on in the race. You are absolute stars! Date of review: June 13, 2008
In short: I definitely ache in new places! I will do it again, but will put in much more hill training beforehand. The event is really well organised and other competitors are encouraging. Date of review: June 10, 2008