In short: Shame, Shame, Shame. In full: Not to flog a dead horse but I am embarassed to be from Edinburgh. This was my 7th marathon, and my third Edinburgh marathon. The organisation was apalling at the finish line. The lack of T shirts fraudulant after the high entry fee. I have had no response from the organisers to my email requesting a Tshirt. The organisers clearly are not marathon runners. Date of review: May 26, 2011
In short: A bit of a mess, & a bit of a disappointment In full: Take a good race, 'tweak it', and watch the complaint levels rise... You put your 'festival hub' on the edge of the city, making it awkward for those who wished to visit; your 'big city marathon' only spent approximately 3 miles in your city; the part of the course that ran through Gosford House wasn't on a decent road surface; don't even get me started on the way that the relay runners were allowed to just charge out into the race, straight into the marathon runners; you prevented the crowds of supporters from being at the finish line, ensuring that you went from a caucophony of noise to a relatively muted few, resulting in a bit of an anti-climax; the walk to the medals & water was a fair old traipse after a 26 mile run; on a day that had produced high winds & cold rain there was no foil blankets handed out, the medal must rank as one of the most imaginative on record (just 'EMF Marathon' really doesn't cut it after 4 months of training, especially when the ribbon states'jnr, 5K, 10K, team relay, half marathon, marathon), the baggage reclaim was a shambles (for some reason all the higher numbers were offloaded first, leaving the elites & faster runners standing around in the cold waiting for their bags); the runners village & reunion area was a disaster, putting everything at the bottom of a field, further away from the baggage area & even more further away from the bus pick-up points, and consisting of very little by way of facilities; and finally, do you really think that it is acceptable to expect people who have just completed a marathon, people who are stiff, cold, exhausted, hungry etc to then walk over a mile to catch a bus back to the centre of town, especially when those self-same people have to then probably cover another few miles to get back to their hotels etc???
In short: Good, flat, fast course - terrible organisation In full: Second Edinburgh Marathon, enjoyed this year more than last. I like the course, scenery etc, but minus points:
Mile markers too small / missing? Same as last year. Finish area v. disorganised, long way to get water. Handed 'Festival' T-shirt not marathon one Rubbish medal compared to last year Ridiculous ‘pinch point’ to exit baggage area V. expensive given facilities provided
Plus points? Preferred finish on tarmac rather than bouncy mat in race course Plenty of toilets at London Road start – if you looked... More water stations than last year, or was it just less hot?
In short: What more can I say that hasn't already been said..... In full: For a big city marathon I found this totally disappointing, it should be called the Musselburgh marathon. It felt quite isolated from miles 16 to 21 with no support apart from fellow runners. The lack of water was terrible why not follow the examples of London and Brighton by having water at every mile from 18/20 to the finish. The finish area was so muddled and to make people walk for 25 minutes to get to the buses and then stand and queue (which is expected) after having run 26.2 miles......I was looking forward to completing another big city marathon but would I do it again, no way. There are lessons to be learnt. Date of review: May 25, 2011
In short: Otherwise enjoyable race, marred by poor organisation at the finsh In full: There was a great atmosphere and good organisation at the start and I enjoyed most of the route, especially running along the coast for much of it. Main gripe was that mile markers were too small and hard to spot (were there actually any at all in the last few miles?). Also, the two "about turns" later in the race were strangely dispiriting. A course needs to have a sense of travelling somewhere to be really memorable. The positive side of this race, as compared to somehwere like London, is that you can run at your own pace for most of it without too much congestion (and without the glitz and overt commercialism). The marshals and support crew were helpful and enthusiastic, though not always plentiful.
But the finish... what more can be said? Having got through the chaos of the actual finish area, I queued 30 mins for a beer, 45 mins for a burger then, after a 20 min walk, 45 mins for a bus, which then left me in a part of the city I didn't know, another 20 mins from my hotel. I got back at 6pm, having finished the race around 1.30. It left an unpleasant memory of an otherwise enjoyable day, and the atmosphere during the interminable wait for buses was, by that point, understandably very sour.
There does seem to be a problem with undercapacity of staffing, facilities and general provision at the end - almost as if the organisers were taken by surpise by the numbers. But then, really, how could they have been? Date of review: May 25, 2011
In short: Disappointing, poor organization, no marathon finisher shirt! In full: There is little I can say that hasn't already been said. I trained hard for this and was looking forward to reliving the positive experience of my first marathon at the 2006 race. Too many negatives from the lack of signage, to unclear baggage instructions, to bland medal, lack luster finish location, etc etc. I was dismayed that after doing a PB that there were NO marathon finisher shirts! Then had to walk the mile+ to the bus! This has the potential to be an awesome race if more attention is given to the details we runners value and not just about how many events can take place on a given weekend and where corners can be cut. I sure hope lessons are learned...as the numbers may be a lot less next year by the sound of these reviews! Date of review: May 25, 2011
In short: Another fine mess In full: This should be a great marathon, but it's ruined by disorganisation, and with the current course should be called the East Lothian marathon. The many volunteer marshals and helpers worked very hard but those at the finish were given an impossible task. What was the risk assessment of the crush at the end? Were the local residents asked or warned about what was planned? Did anybody think that queueing for 30 minutes after the end of the marathon for two small fruit bars was ideal? One can only assume that the current funding model doesn't work - that the organisers have to place the wishes of those selling to the public above the needs of runners at the finish and cannot afford to pay for the policing needed to close more roads in Edinburgh. The options would seem to be either to charge a more appropriate entry fee (this race costs half of what any large American marathon would charge) and to ask the city and its businesses whether it wants to sell out every bed in the city, and if so contribute to the event that achieves this. And an Edinburgh marathon should finish either on Princes St or in Holyrood Park. Date of review: May 25, 2011