In short: Nice, well organised biggish event. Playful course In full: Broadly a very well organised race based at the MK Dons stadium in MK. I arrived 60+ minutes before off and teh car parks were empty and no problems but understand others did have issues. Good facilities as stadium toilets etc available. Excellent baggage check.
My one criticism of the organisation was the lack of time markers at the start.Whilst not everyone will "obey" them they do give a useful indication for people and te lack of them made the first few miles tighter than needed to have been.
Early miles into central MK on flat wide roads. One or two too many loop backs for my taste but gave opportunity to see lots of people and teh support was very good.
Later part of race explored the wider MK and whilst perfectly pleasant it was definitely hard to keep track of where you were. The race is decsribed as undullating and think thats what it is. Certainly harder than it looks on the profile but looking at overal elevation its certainly not hilly!
Good water and gel stations about the course. Nice medal at end. A good race and well worth doing. Date of review: May 9, 2014
In short: Great race, organisation and atmosphere In full: Brilliantly organised race with superb support throughout the course from both marshals and the public. The course starts on closed roads and then follows the redways before heading for the finish at The MK Dons stadium which was brilliant. Having your family and friends sitting in the stadium waiting for you to arrive and cheering you on as you run round the stadium is a great buzz.
Nice chunky medal and a bottle of water handed to you at the finish. You then make your way to the runner's area where you can collect your goody bag and get changed etc. Date of review: May 8, 2014
In short: My 2nd time at MK, must be a good race In full: Decided to give this race another go and banked on better weather conditions. Turned out a really good day for running a marathon. The route, support and organization could not be faulted. Recommend you give this one a go. Date of review: May 8, 2014
In short: A bit of a let down In full: With no disrespect to the race organisation, which was flawless and fantastic, the scenery in Milton Keynes leaves a bit to be desired. The race route seemed to be covering a lot of the same ground, but I think that's because MK is a grid design, so a lot of the town looks the same! It is billed as 'slightly undulating', but after 15-16 miles, those little hills really start to get on your wick! Also the crowd support is all but non existent after HM distance, which is such a shame because it is in the latter stages that you really need support! Fab race organisation, fab medal, fab finish in the MK Dons stadium - but I wouldn't do it again, thanks! Date of review: May 8, 2014
In short: Not What I Expected In full: I thought I was going to be able to attempt a PB, but how wrong I was. The course itself is reasonably flat (as described) until the last few miles of constant ups and downs as you cross under the roads using the cycle red ways (not really made clear until you run it and realise).
I had a great first half race but these slopes and tight turns became a bit demoralizing towards the end and I actually finished way off my best PB by some margin.
The water Stations were very good with an excellent selection of bottled water, gatorade and gels. Local support was excellent - only rivaled by the fantastic supporters of the Ealing Half Marathon in my experience.
The course had some narrow turns with lots of shouts of "hold the line" as we rounded them and people started to cut across other runners. There were also a number of metal posts marking out pedestrian crossing points that I though could have had hi-viz markers tied to them (some did but not all). The start was chaotic - half and full marathoners all mixed up. Pacers had balloons but no time written on them. It took me 2-3 miles to get to my chosen pacer and all the while dodging other slower runners. Timed pens would be a better option next year. All in all I enjoyed the experience overall as any marathon is such an achievement to complete but I don't feel the course is one to repeat again. Date of review: May 8, 2014
In short: Enjoyed the race In full: Third time for me and I really enjoyed it. I really like the bottled water which even some big marathons don't give.. Finish is great and it seems the whole of mk gets behind the event Date of review: May 7, 2014
In short: fabulous 1st marathon , amazing course support on course In full: finally did my 26.2 in my home town on my local routes, i knew what was coming! the hills are not what i'd describe as hill but anything inclining after 20 miles felt like a mountain. awesome support on course from marshals spectators and entertainment. very welcoming hosepipe spray from 2 locals (thank you) refreshing on a warm day. the stadium was well organised, toilet queue was minimal , no real waiting at all , bag drop and collect was swift and easy , the highlight of my day was crossing the finish line and receiving my medal from daughter who volunteered and had a long wait to see her mum :) the medal is great <3 also great support from st johns who iced my husbands injured ankle at the end and made sure we safe to travel home thank you thank you thank you Date of review: May 7, 2014
In short: My home town - I wanted to love it, but a tale of two half - brutal, dull first half - which left you struggling to complete the second half :-( In full: This was my first ever Marathon in 2013 and despite an extremely hot day - following months of ice & snow training - I still loved it & signed up for 2014 almost as soon as it opened. This year I approached it with a lot less enthusiasm, having noted the changes to the route - and was massively disappointed that large parts of MK's fab scenery were missing & replaced by the first 10 miles of relentless dull city centre boulevards & duel carriageway. Legs were shredded by the time we hit the redways. Plus points: Fantastic organisation, no parking, toilet or baggage issues, the best Marshals ever, fantastic support from the good people of Milton Keynes from hose pipes cooling up down, to a great guy at Linford Wood with orange slices - best I've ever tasted! Fantastic bands playing at different spots along the way! Great Stadium finish, great medal, great goody bag - forgot to mention the water stations again excellent! Top marks all around Negatives: need some form of pens or pace indicators at the start - no one could see the numbers on the backs of the pacers shirts - maybe pace on the balloons. The first 10 miles are dull dull dull, lose some of the city centre boulevards - MK has so much more to offer! Please make some changes for next year - I so want to love you again - I will be there next year even if you make me run on hot coals up & down the city......But I would kinda prefer not to!!! Date of review: May 7, 2014