In short: Hills, hills and more hills - but great experience! In full: Despite concern about the revised course, I loved the race. Repeated out and back section led to a great atmosphere with constant encouragement from faster and slower runners on the other side of the road. A 26.2 mile loop for such a small field would have led to a very lonely experience. Advertised course profile was worrying enough, the reality was far worse - I'm sure there was a collective gulp on the first downhill on the realisation that we needed to climb back up twice. Somehow, however, managed to record my first sub 4 hour time.
Organisation was great; free food and drink before and after the race was a nice touch. Great medal and technical t-shirt. Only small gripe was the parking, some of the on street parking left very little room for runners.
Overall a very tough but weirdly enjoyable race; glad the website suggests that it will continue for next year. Not sure there's potential for a mass participation race in such a hilly area, but could be one that many would want to include in their list of must do races. Date of review: April 6, 2011
In short: Future marathons will be easy after this.... In full: My first marathon and with the weight of sponsorship on my shoulders I had to finish depite the hills. The organisation was fantastic, the atmosphere great and the dreaded hilly loop section surprisingly uplifting as everyone encouraged everyone else up and over. Two days later and legs are back to normal so I obviously need to run faster next year! Thanks to all those marshals, drinks stops and organisers for putting on a great event. Keep the hills and see you next year! Date of review: April 5, 2011
In short: Brutal, but feel like I've conquered the world, one marathon not to be missed! In full: Thank you to all who put in the time to organise this incredible event. Never thought I could run a marathon of hills, hills and more hills. A brilliant event, yes the traffic wasn't ideal on the home straight, but by then was just elated to finish it. Amazing support, feed stations spot on, toilets well positioned for sneaky pee, the medal, tee shirt, free cuppa and bacon roll topped a great Sunday. Thank you! Date of review: April 5, 2011
In short: Loved It, an abundance of hills In full: This was my first Marathon. I loved it, the organisation was great, the challenge was impressive. I will need to do more hill training next year (and I did my fair share this year too). Hope they don't change the course but perhaps get the road closure for the overlap stretch on the out and back. Date of review: April 5, 2011
In short: Toughest road marathon i have done, but good organisation In full: It was a tough hilly route but good training for me with trail marathons to come. Quality medal and t-shirt, food at start/finish, tannoy welcoming each and every runner, lots of drink stations if you wanted them, encouraging marshalls - all made it a good race. Only gripe was running down that busy road with runners coming the other way and some fast moving cars, but I know that it had not been easy getting a route agreed. Date of review: April 5, 2011
In short: well organised , freindly atmosphere and lots of encouragemnt from runners and spectators. I may have picked a slightly easier course for a first Marathon,but the challenge of the hills made it a marathon to remember Date of review: April 4, 2011
In short: Veteran marathon runner said 'It's the toughest I've ever done' In full: This marathon is really enjoyable, but also very tough. I was injured going into the race and hadn't been able to train properly. If I had known how tough it was going to be I would have probably not started. However the race is very good, scenry is amazing and there is generally a friendly feel to it. The course is really nice.
After the race I was chatting to someone from the 100 marathon club, and he said this was the hardest he had ever done. Therefore if you like a challenge, this is for you. Despite this I would want to put you off because if you have trained properly and in marathon shape you will enjoy it. My problem was that I wasn't fit enough and due to it being so challenging I found it a slog, but enjoyed it at the finish. I'll be back next year, as long as I'm fit. Date of review: April 4, 2011
In short: Loved it! In full: Wow, what a great marathon & challenge. I've never ran that many hills in my life! But it was great, I loved it. There were issues with the route and safety of runners on the stretch between race HQ and the turn onto the country lane (the hilly part), but that section is only about a mile and half long, the rest was fine and the marshalls were fantastic - very supportive.
The hilly section was amazing, I would like to see that section kept in for 2012 as it was quite unique running all those hills and having everybody passing each other on the opposite side of the road. It made for a great spirit & support network amongst the runners as we all knew how tough it was out there.
It was a shame we couldn't have run through Battle another time because the support in the town was encouraging and that may have made for a better finish route.
The drink stations and race HQ were superb as well in terms of food & drink available. The choice was the best I've ever seen. I wondered at the beginning why they had so many energy foods available and after running those hills, I can see why! They were certainly needed.
Will be back next year for sure! Good job. Date of review: April 4, 2011