In short: Good, fast course, could improve some basics In full: Plenty of positives: easy to get there, park at the OU and get away afterwards. Good, fast, flattish course - like many others, it seems, I ran a PB, and was glad I did as I didn't get caught up in the problems at the finish. Appreciated the free lucozade as well as water. Marshalls were fine and thanks to them for standing around on a really cold morning and encouraging us runners. Good medal which impressed my kids. And the Dri-fit T shirt is good quality for £10 extra.
However I was surprised at the start that there was no lining up according to estimated finish time - this would be easy to implement. And there was no PA system at the start to create an atmosphere and count down to the start, just a hooter at 1030 (on time at least, which was good on a cold day!). Didn't know about the massage at the end so I just went home.
I enjoyed the day and was chuffed with a PB so no great complaints. Feeling better for FLM as a result. Date of review: March 13, 2006
In short: good race to run In full: A good race to run apart from two small things.1 the start which would be better if mile times were put out and a longer finish as we all got to cold waiting to get our medals.Otherwise a great day out. Date of review: March 13, 2006
In short: Great course, but organisation lacks some fundamentals In full: Great route - I didn't know MK could look like that (& I live under 10 miles away), good marshalling, high potential.
Lack of Championchip timing, public address system, time expectations for start line-up - and a queue to cross over the finish line (!!!) let this event down. Not major & easy to fix - & I hope that they have when I do it next year. Date of review: March 13, 2006
In short: A great first half, but organisation needs to be better In full: There were a few niggles - Baggage store wasn't as described, it was totally unsecure. - No indication that the race had started until the pack started moving. - A couple of gaps where there should have been marshalls, I had to call out to one chap ahead of me as he was going the wrong way. - The finish. For an event that size, they really need to be using chip timings, not relying on a couple of guys with one clipboard between them.
That said, it was a really great day and a fabulous first half. I'll definitely be doing more half-marathons as a result. Date of review: March 13, 2006
In short: Good quick race in the freezing cold. Some organisational issues. In full: Organisation seems to be where this race is let down a bit. Unless you got to Milton Keynes on the M1 or A5 (following printed directions) it was hard to find the OU campus. Some signs from a bit further afield on likely alternative routes saying where to go would have been very helpful.
The car parks were plenty big enough and there was no problem parking. Close to the start and finish so easy to leave bags in the car.
The start line was unclear and I never heard a gun or horn to start, we just began moving. No idea where the exact start line was.
Race wasn't as flat as I had excepted, but certainly wasn't what other courses describe as undulating. The underpasses and bridges, though short, did get difficult towards the end as the body starts flagging a bit.
As has been mentioned by almost everyone else, the end of the race was very badly done. The exact finish line was unclear. You went into lanes (as usual for a non-chip race), but it took a long time to get through to getting your medal. In the freezing cold this made your body cool down very quickly. I finished the race before there were too many delays at the finish, but around the 2 hour mark the queues in the finishing lanes were back past the finish line.
The course was well marshalled and kept you on track. There could have been better signs around the start/finish area to indicate where things were. Took me ages to find the toilets after the race because of poor signage.
For a big sponsored event I was expecting a goody bag of some kind, but not too disappointed that I didn't get one. There was plenty of Lucozade Sport for those that wanted it though.
Not sure I would do it again. Quite a long way to come to run round a town in the cold. Prefer to run round the New Forest in the warm! Date of review: March 13, 2006
In short: As many pro's as con's In full: I really enjoyed the race and managed a PB, so I am well chuffed. I finished early enough to avoid the queues at the end but my friends who finished around 2 hours got very cold waiting to be processed. If the organisers use chip timings and provide bottled water out on the course then I will definitely run again next year. Overall a good run for me and thanks to the organisers. Date of review: March 13, 2006
In short: Nice warm up or first time event In full: Lots of standing around at the end, but not a bad event. Some very encouraging marshalls and police. Worth a look next time. Date of review: March 13, 2006
In short: Start and Finish organisation let this race down In full: No clear starting horn and the finish was not clear, delays in number taking and getting cold while waiting up to 20 mins. Good facilities just need more help and more signs.
In short: A good race, but spoiled by poor organisation at the finish In full: I found the whole race well organised (except for the finish), there were toilets that you didn't have to queue for (although it was other runners that told us of these as they weren't signposted), the day went smoothly with no problems with traffic or parking, race itself was good, although those bridges in the last couple of miles are a bit mean. Plenty of water and energy drinks, marshalls were friendly (and they must have been very cold!) Only criticism was the finish - after a sprint (!?) up to the line you stopped dead and were then herded into a pen for 10 mins, unable to cool down properly and just getting cold, while the legs stiffened up - drinks were brought down to us, but I don't think it was clear that we needed to stay in order - I saw people moving back to meet up with people, and some people pushed past me. I will just stick with my stopwatch time from line to line - which was a PB by 7 mins, so I was well happy with the day overall. I would do this again, although it was a tad expensive considering no goody bag and no chip time. Date of review: March 13, 2006