In short: Getting better every year In full: I done this last year when the course was two laps. This year was a 100% improvement with the route being changed and incorporated the town plus the countryside hills and flat. Great run great goody bag great fun see you in 2013 Date of review: March 12, 2012
In short: Great Race - well marshalled In full: Really enjoyed the race. Didn't see any problems with traffic, but was relatively near front. Marshalls were great, esp the two very enthusiastic women on a bend at about 10 miles.
Well done to the organisers! Date of review: March 12, 2012
In short: Lovely route and conditions from this well organised event. In full: Nice blend of town and country route with some challenges along the way. This event should be celebrated in Colchester but it seems to be viewed as an inconvenience by some. I for one enjoyed it, easy to get to, easy to park, fun to run well organised relaxed race. Well worth doing again. Date of review: March 12, 2012
In short: Nice local event, slightly let down by some of the marshalls In full: This is an event local to me and by-and-large I thought it was good. I enjoyed the route and thought the second half was lovely, really showing off the Essex countryside. The mile markers were quite approximate in some places! It was quite funny to see that when the organiser called for all first-timers to put their hands up prior to the start, they all seemed to be at the front of the pen.
The one really negative thing I would say about the race, which really does need sorting out before next year, is the marshalling. Most of the marshalls were excellent, but I question the appropriateness of having youngsters marshalling busy junctions and roundabouts. They simply don't have the road-awareness or authority to handle impatient drivers. One pair had their backs to the T-Junction they were marshalling and failed to react even when a car pulled out right in front of the person behind me, despite the gasps from the spectators. At another T-Junction, towards the garden centre at the end, runners and cars were left to sort themselves out while the marshall was standing 20 yards or so down the road chatting. I appreciate that as runners we all need to watch out when we're on the road, but if a junction/roundabout warrants a marshall - as most in Colchester town centre do - they need to be effective.
To finish on a positive note, I liked the little towel in the goodie bag, very handy to add to my running backpack. Will definitely do this again. Date of review: March 12, 2012
In short: Good....but don't send all the marshals home! In full: Great facilities at the beginning. Good parking, loos etc etc. Good marshaling along route during most of the race, but some very grumpy/irate drivers. At one stage a shadow came over me, I turned and saw a bus right behind me, which was a little unnerving. The goody bag was a little lacking, but as someone else said it is still a fairly new race. My main gripe was the marshaling later on. One lady in our team came in right at the end and all the marshals had gone home. Our team mate actually got lost because there was no one there to direct her. Dreadful experience for her. No matter how slow, you surely need people still out on route, unless you send a sweep up car along to collect people and finish the race. She was very upset. Date of review: March 12, 2012
In short: Good fast scenic Half In full: My first time doing this and certainly not the last. The hill up into Colchester town centre was a surprise, and the hill climbing out north of the town wouldn't put this race into the flat category, but at least they are dispensed with in the first half of the race; the second half being flat. My garmin registered 235ft total elevation throughput the race.
Marshals did a great job at the road junctions keeping the traffic clear. I did notice a couple of incidents where irate drivers who couldn't wait 5 minutes tried to push their way onto the closed roads. Would've been nice to see Essex police taking care of those idiots, rather than the poor volunteer marshals taking the flak for it.
The mile markers were pretty much bang on apart from miles 11 - 12 along the striaght roman road coming back towards Colchester.
The goody bag might have been a bit light, but this is only the second year this race has been run. Hopefully in time more sponsors and slicker organisation will iron out what so far has been an excellently organised event.
In short: Good marshalling, great start facilities. In full: Overall the race was good. I had no problem with marshalls - plenty of them. I also didn't encounter many traffic problems - yes, traffic was trying to go both ways down narrow country lanes, but I've had that at other half marathons. I was frustrated that there was no (obvious) contact email/telephone on website - so couldn't ask questions in advance of anyone. Also slightly frustrated that "same-day results" didn't mean chip times going on the website on the same day. 24 hours after now and still no sign of chip times on website. I however THINK I ran a pb, so delighted - despite a few hills. Plenty of supporters in town- shame they didn't cheer/applaud more. Facilities at end/start are excellent at the stadium- plenty of toilets etc. Bit more ra-ra-ra before the start would have been motivating - bit low key. But I'm sure it's a race I'll do it again. Date of review: March 12, 2012
In short: Good mix of town and country. Poor marshalling. In full: Start and finish line was at the stadium which provided plenty of parking and excellent facilities. The first half of the race is in a busy town/high street setting then it's out into the glorious Essex countryside for the second half. I really enjoyed the route however, the race was let down by a few factors.
70% of the marshelling was handled by teenage girls in groups of two who were busy with their phones and clearly had no knowledge of running events.
I was under the impression there would be road closures but so many cars were getting through I felt is was dangerous. Cars were driving fast. I really had to be watching the cars the whole time when the marshalls should have been doing that. I opted to run on the pavement for most of it.
The worst goody bag. Ever. Frisby, flannel, and mars bar. Pastic medal, no date.
Would do this again as I enjoyed the route but organising and goody bag/medal needs sorting. More experienced marshalls please! Date of review: March 12, 2012
In full: Once again, excellent marshalls, much better course than last year. Lots of disgruntled motorists...clearly unaware event was on, not helped by lack of 'RUNNERS BEWARE' signs, which we normally see at most road events. Be back next year. Well done Date of review: March 12, 2012