In short: It just keeps getting better! In full: The 30th Hastings Half and the route was lined pretty much all the way and peppered with people handing out orange pieces, sweets and lots of support. The organisation is great and the Hastings brass is always a unique reminder of this great race. Lots of sweet tea available at the end. Well done to all who make this happen. Can't wait for next year. Date of review: March 25, 2014
In short: Amazing race! Really enjoyable! Dont be put off by the hills! In full: This was my first time doing Hastings and Id heard alot of things about how tough the first 12km of hills are but honestly they are not that bad and very gradual! With a few cheeky sharp ones aswell. But you make up time on a really fast second half which definitely gives this race PB potential!!! Great crowds, great organization and just a great race!! Date of review: March 25, 2014
In short: Still one of the best In full: My favourite half marathon. Thsi was my second year running at Hastings despite my home race (Brentwood) being the same day. Very enthusiasticaly supported and very friendly. You don;t need goodie bags as there's loads of places to get tea and cakes when you've finished.
Parking much better this year so you can just walk to the start and don't need to queue for shuttle bus for hours at the end, though they had almost run out of parking spaces by the time I got there so not sure what people arriving after me did (I was there nearly an hour before the start). But a great race, lots of free jelly babies and oranges. I think I'll be bacxk next year. Date of review: March 24, 2014
In short: Best Half Marathon In full: Absolutely loved the hill challenge and scenery, I thought I would never see the end of a hill ahead of me!
The crowd support was absolutely fantastic, close to London marathon support. The bagpipes at the start were great as were the groups playing musical instruments at certain points of the course.
The only grumble which is a very small one which can be easily sorted to have a table with cold drink at the end more accessible to the runners. IT was a confusing at the end as because the area is not cut off from spectators you had to walk around to find the table with a cold drink which was not as easy to find with so many spectators and runners all in the same area. I came across the tea being served first which is a very novel idea.
No secure bag drop but you can leave your valuables in an envelope behind the desk. I thought this worked really well as I was able to get my bag quickly and make the train back to London with zero delay.
Would I do this again yes yes yes! It is most definitely the best half I have ever participated in and I actually got a PB with all those hills
The organisers/volunteers were so friendly and super helpful dealing with any questions via email and also on the day. I can understand why so many runners go back again and again to do this race.
In full: Third time at this event and only entered as a last minute thing to do some miles with other folk. The hills have been mentioned in abundance, and quite rightly, but what makes this run is the BRILLIANT crown support from all the locals. Hastings has a bit of a strange reputation but the locals really do themselves proud on the day. Come out pretty much all the way and I tried to high five and wave at as many as possible. A wonderful day out yesterday and BIG THANKS to all Hastings residents. You really know how to make a runner feel welcome. Date of review: March 24, 2014
In short: What goes up, must come down In full: First timer! Been bugged into doing this race for a few years but it never fitted into my plans.
Pre race - pack was sent out well in advance, and an excellent set of notes to let you know all you needed.
Pre start - They have created a small running village on the green near the start line where you find all the usual stalls, massage, baggage drop. One thing, it would be good if the baggage drop could be a bit more secure...leaving it around the edge of the marquee was a bit unnerving. Issuing a baggage label linked to you race number could be a good option (see Tunbridge Wells HM). The lineup pre race was good, and the start was given extra atmosphere with a rendition of Chariots of Fire booming from the speakers as you crossed the line.
Race - Well, the first 6 miles are generally uphill. For me that is fine, causes me to regulate my pace/effort a bit more! Whilst the incline isn't riduculous on the main drag up Queensway (3mi - 5.5mi) it does go on...and on! The support throughout is fantastic, plenty of drinks stations manned by local scout groups, slices of orange/jelly babies/etc are in abundance too. The last 2mi down the promenade are a scenic slog, but make for a nice finish (although some had a hailstorm to contend with just after 2hrs).
Post race - cold and hot drinks are plentiful. An nice horse brass makes an unusal memento, but one which I'll look forward to adding to in 2015.
In short: Excellent race In full: Really well organised race, but what makes it great is the support from locals. They are awesome! The route is mainly uphill for the first 5 miles, then undulating for another 4-5 miles, then downhill or flat to the finish. A fairly tough race but the support makes you forget the pain! Date of review: March 24, 2014
In short: Great atmosphere, great run In full: Serious PB potential here, wiped 2:40 off my previous best. Steep but very short hill near the start, then a long but shallow incline until about 5 miles. Then pretty much flat and downhill. Great support all the way round, some sections reminded me of Tour de France with the crowd on the road! Nice horse brass medal, something different. Well organised. A few people have reported results issues. Welcome cup of tea at the finish. Date of review: March 23, 2014