In short: None but the brave In full: First bewl marathon, very quiet after London. Very challenging. Plenty of rain, plenty of mud, hills, spills and loneliness. Just leave your brain at race hq . What a mad bad very naughty marathon. Just a crazy Saturday run but great fun the rain definitely added another dimension to the course. Date of review: May 10, 2014
In short: Great organisation - lovely scenery - perfect day... In full: I did the half as I had a lot of other things to do Saturday and entered last-minute. Weather was perfect, the ground firm but dry and the marshalls very positive and encouraging. After the noise and heat of the VLM it felt wonderful to be out in the country in very pretty surroundings. The aid stations were great and I'd certainly do the full 26.2 next year. Put a smile back on my face and credit must go to Dave of Hermes for ensuring that it was so friendly and nothing too much trouble. 10/10 ! Date of review: May 19, 2013
In short: Pretty course and you can see that it is organised by experienced runners In full: Friendly, well organised, good value (with nice tech shirt and medal), enough water and food stations in reasonable locations for where you need them. Course is not easy but mild compared with downs trail marathons, and it was so much easier this year without the deep mud! A slow run for me after a tough week's mileage but it's also a nice spot to relax afterwards with your family and enjoy the day. Date of review: May 8, 2013
In short: If you enjoy pain this is the one for you. In full: I have previously run the Bewl 15, so I knew what to expect but had forgotten quite how hard this run is. The marshalls at the water stations were all fantastic, but as there were no other marshalls at any other point it was quite a lonely run. The hills are very demanding and the terrain was difficult if you are mainly used to road running. I am a very experienced runner but will only be coming back to Bewl for a family day out. It is a very beautiful part of the country which I shall enjoy in future as a ramble. The medal is worth having and the two elderly supporters at the end with their 'marathon cake' were a very welcome sight at the end of a hard run. A big thank you to them. Date of review: May 7, 2013
In short: A fantastic marathon but maybe not the wisest debut choice! In full: I picked the Bewl Water Marathon as my debut because I'm not a fan of big city, high numbers of runners events & I thought that the two lap format would be useful heading into the final miles. In hindsight it might not have been the most sensible decision but you can't fault the organisation, the course or the other runners. A reasonable amount of chat from everyone all the way round, plenty of encouragement from the marshals, excellent scenery & a downhill finish (always nice) made for a fantastic first experience.
Despite my background of trail running the course was a bit more challenging than I'd anticipated, that final big hill was a killer at 24 miles, but the HUGE medal and cracking T-Shirt made the final effort worth it. Even inspired me to muster a sprint finish!
I'd certainly run it again (although perhaps not next year) but for anyone planning to do it the only advice I'd give is that you need to be prepared to run a lot of the course on your own as numbers are limited & given the nature of the course the support away from the start/finish line tends to be quite thin! Date of review: May 7, 2013