In short: Tough But EnjoyableRace In full: With the heat and the hills this was definately a tough course and never one for a PB. However this was geared for fun and most certainly delivered. Marshalls were friendly and the drink stations were frequent and well stocked with fruit, crips, jellybabies etc. Infact the best I've ever came across. The wine tasting was the iceing on the cake. I made the most of this be stopping at each one for a chat and taste (Yes, for two laps) Picnic at the end was an excellent idea as gave a chance to chat to other runners. Also enjoyed the BBQ and glass of wine. There was a fault with the timing system and my heart went out to the DJ who seemed genuinly dissapointed. However as most of us were in fancy dress I much doubt many were looking for PBs. Anyway, times were rectified within a couple of days so no harm done.
I cannot recommend this enough. It's a beautiful course and the atmosphere is great. If you don't fancy the full marathon, then the option of a half is also available. You may even be doing yourself a favour by leaving your watch at home for this one.
In short: Wonderful wonderful day out spoilt only by the terrible caterers! In full: It was hot - and I did a PW of 6 hours, but I didn't care because I had the most amazing time. The race itself was well organised and the marshals were fantastic - the wine I was sure would be a bad idea but with plenty of water it is fine to have a little glass at every station (which I did) without adverse effects!
My only comments are - three of my group's chip times seem to be missing from the final results.
There was no hog roast left at the end which is unacceptable. If you have 200 runners, you need 200 portions, end of story. Not difficult - bad attitude of young kids serving and getting paid for it when older volunteers have stood out in the baking heat and been wonderful marshals for free - I find that quite insulting! A caterer told my friend who ran the marathon that he couldn't get her a glass of wine because "he'd been here since 9am and he was a bit tired". If the organisers sack the caterers and get better ones next year the event will be perfect!
Also all drinks stations back to front - surely it should be wine first, then food, then water - that would make it easier for serious runners and better for drinkers as they need water last after wine not before it. Date of review: September 10, 2012
In short: Best but hardest marathon ever done! In full: Lovely race that was very well organised. Extremely tough in the hot conditions. I drank even more wine on the second lap to keep me going! Volunteers and supporters were brilliant. Date of review: September 10, 2012
In short: Fantastic scenery, great organisation, very friendly but those hills are hurting now. In full: Mix of trails, footpaths and a few road sections. Don't remember any of it being flat. A hard race but worth it for the views and support. No chance of a PB. Fantastic day for family and supporters with fun runs, activities and wine tours. Date of review: September 10, 2012
In short: The chip timing issues will concern very few In full: I feel sorry for the organiser who seemed absolutely gutted that Sports Systems had messed up the chip timing. I think I would be correct in saying though that the vast majority of runner this was not a PB course and personally this didn't even register as a minor irritation. Other than that I really can't fault this run. Yes, its very tough and the weather didn't help as I don't do hot, but everything else was spot on. I love the views, marshals were fantastic, plenty of refreshment stations (I particularly liked the red wine) and a great atmosphere at the end. Great idea to make the finish a "picnic" area. I finish too many marathons and that's it. This time there was plenty of time and people to chat to making it an altogether friendlier event. Can't wait until next years run but I will be hoping for it to be 10 degrees cooler. Date of review: September 10, 2012
In short: Challenging but enjoyable In full: Had a great day enjoying the scenery and wine. The weather was too hot for my fancy dress costume and my time was a PW but still throughly enjoyed the experience. A really great event. Deserves to be a "must do" race. marshalls and organisation faultless. Date of review: September 10, 2012
In short: enjoyable day, well marshalled In full: In the heat, very much appreciated the well stocked and multitude of drinks stations - better than many ultras, which the marathon felt like this year in the heat! Good atmosphere at finish - my wife and kids still rate this on our third visit as one of best for spectating at with so much to do and enjoyable feel Date of review: September 10, 2012
In short: Hot, hilly, but beautiful and friendly. In full: Brilliantly organised, really glad that they added in extra water and sponges, slightly disappointed that they'd run out of BBQ by the time I finished, but I was right at the back, so can't really grumble! Still got a nice refreshing glass of wine, lovely medal and t-shirt. The race director was very nice, and the marshals throughout the course were charming and helpful, and showed no frustration or boredom despite the 6.5 hour wait for runners to finish. Fabulous race. Date of review: September 9, 2012