In short: Well Organised, Very Friendly, Very Scenic, Slightly Challenging In full: I travelled from Essex for this race having decided to enter on Saturday afternoon, and arrived at the car park at 7.50 for the 8.30 start.
There is plenty of parking available in the field which was well marshalled.
I then went to collect my race number and timing chip, and this was well organised, meaning it took no more than 90 seconds to do this.
There was plenty of room at the school to get a good warm-up in around the playing field. There were toilets in the school, and there were also a number of porta loos available outside, so while there were queues for the toilets they were minimal compared to other races.
There was plenty of room for the massed start, and useful markers advising people where to start from depending on predicted time. One slight down side here was that those of us near the back could not hear the starter, so perhaps a PA system of some sort for future years?
The course is definitely undulating. There were three climbs to be undertaken, and two of these reduced a number of runners to walking.
There were plenty of flat sections to get a good pace up, and the last 3 km was mainly downhill so you could really get your speed up for a fast finish if the last climb had not finished you off.
Access to the finish line was good, and there was plenty of help at the finish to remove the timing chips, and to hand out medals.
The course was very scenic going through some very nice villages, and beautiful countryside. With the pleasant weather, this made for a very enjoyable run.
Overall this was a very enjoyable event, that I will definitely do again. But I would not say that this is a PB course due to the hills. If you are looking for a quick time, get some hill sessions in in your training, otherwise just look to enjoy the course and the challenge. Date of review: April 15, 2012
In short: Must be one of the most picturesque and interesting 10Ks in the South east In full: Interesting course - only flat section (as I remember it) was a short stretch next to the Darent River, but apart from a difficult (but not treacherous) hill at 6k, it was manageable. Road closure at the start was very useful - would have been nice to have had a partial road closure for the last 2kms as well, when the course went back on to the A225. Nice medal at the end. Marshalls friendly and helpful. Definitely worth it. Thank you. Date of review: April 21, 2011
In short: The best for scenery In full: Great that it is an early start; beautiful course - friendly and frequent marshals. Chips this year was a great addition. Not to be missed. Date of review: April 15, 2011
In short: Superb rural 10K with added bonus of chip timing In full: My second year at the Darent Valley and this has already become one of my favourite 10K's (the glorious weather may have helped sway that!)
The route is very scenic, with a few slight inclines to help keep you focused. The downhill to the finish means you can start building the pace from a long way out.
Whilst the final 3K is on a main road, the traffic was rather light so wasn't an issue. Date of review: April 11, 2011
In short: well organised, very pleasant route, with good atmosphere. In full: Excellent and scenic race in glorious weather- cheeky hill between 6 and 7 K that made the achilles ache a tad- agree last bit on main road let it down slightly, but the traffic was well managed by the Police and felt safe- good atmosphere with plenty of locals out offering support- well organised, good HQ, lots of good marshalls out on course too- I'll be back next year (which reminds me, there was a bit of traffic congestion getting off M25 on way to village as big boot fair at Pedham Place- I'm pretty sure these are held on most Sundays, so will leave a bit more time next year) Date of review: April 11, 2011
In short: Views and challenging little hills - cheeky In full: Saw the medal that they gave out for previous races and thought "I want one of them there preeetty medals". Came off nights, one hour rest and was picked up by my mates for the 8:30 start. Weather was GREAT. Parking good, short walk to start. Had a lovely "village" atmosphere. Chip timing so no worries about trying to get over the line. Fast start on the road. Surprised a few car drivers with hundreds of brightly clad runners passing them! Fantastic marshals and directions were clear. Nice touch was white spray painting protruding tree roots and the bigger rocks. Saw many people I knew (took the mick out of the copper doing traffic duty !)Cheeky little hills, beautiful views - smell of the river - ahhh! That "testing" hill that don't end where you think it would at 6k was a pulse lifter. Good fast finish with the downhill. Lots of support. Larger water station at the end with some fruit would have tipped the top of an already great event. AND THE MEDAL ! So preeetty! Thanks Swanley - Did it in 47.22 - got to bet eventually at 11:45. SLEEP. Date of review: April 10, 2011
In short: Excellent scenery, organisation, value and last but not least excellent weather !!! In full: A lovely scenic race with some lovely off road and across field sections to mix it up ! Yes, I must also mention that demanding hill between 6k & 7k however it does give you a real buzz once you make it to the top! I really do love this race ! Well done Swanley ! Date of review: April 10, 2011
In short: Great race, lovely weather, super medal. In full: Loved this race which was well organised and over a lovely undulating scenic route with only one really horrible hill near the end which was steep but quite short. I also liked the 8.30 start.
The only bit I didn't like was the run along the road back to the village with the traffic whizzing by but other than that I really enjoyed it.
The medal was well above average and the Sweatshop voucher appreciated.
I'll be back next year without a doubt. Date of review: April 10, 2011