In short: Fantastic first marathon In full: My first marathon. I'd love to say I enjoyed every minute, but the last five miles were not funny (at the time).
Absolutely excellent organisation, I would like to give special thanks to the feed station at 11 and 20 miles, making so much noise it cheered me up no end, and the lady marshall with the ghetto blaster, but all the marshalls and helpers did a fantastic job. Thank you very much!
This race really is perfect for beginners, with very few inclines.
My only sad point is that I appear to have missed out on a t shirt in my exhaustion at the end... Date of review: October 17, 2010
In short: Great race, full of friendly runners. This is a PB course!! In full: I came in at 3:05 and was on on for 3:00 until about 23 miles although the rot set in at 20 miles. Got running with a friendly group from about mile 15 through to 20 odd and we all just plodded the miles out at sub 3 pace, unfortunately only 1 guy made it to sub 3!! Really friendly people, race organisation did everything you need. Yes cups aren't ideal but they were every 3 miles so not a real nightmare.
Only idea for next year: It took me about 25 minutes to walk back to the car park at Abingdon college with very sore legs, I would have happily paid £3 or so for a shuttle bus to get me back. Might be some more money to be made for the Rotary Club. Date of review: October 17, 2010
In short: A great race. So much better than the old route. Excellent marshals. Very well organised. Thank you. In full: I had fallen out of love with the old route, on which the first 20 miles were pretty scenic and the last 6 miles took you into the middle of nowhere. The current route is far more scenic and the 2-lap element is great for anticipating what is to come in the latter stages. The running looked a bit lonely for the 4hr + runners - the field definitely thins out compared to, say, London, so I am not sure it would be ideal for beginners! Marshals were encouraging and efficient, including the lady with the ghetto blaster playing Chariots of Fire. Thank you all. Date of review: October 17, 2010
In short: Back for 2010 - just as good as last year - if not better! In full: Just got back from Abo 2010.
Well, what can I say?
It was a fight or flea for me with this race - put all the training in, not injured, clocking good times then last night my father died. I had to decide whether I would still run or not - I did and I decided to run in his memory.
It was tough at some points but everyone was spectacular. I talked to and hugged and shook hands with so many 'strangers' and people off the forum and it made for the most unforgettable race of my life.
Home in 3.41 (4 mins off PB) - not the 3.30 I aimed for but I went off a bit quick and slowed naturally around 17/18 miles.
Course was pretty much the same as last year so nice to know some familiar points.
Marshals were fantasic - as was crowd support. Plenty of water, jelly babies and a woman at around mile 20 with COKE which I could have kissed her for (I didn't though, I'm not a lesbian)
Only thing that p'd me off a bit was the slow start on the track - getting around it (especially as it was frosty so quite slippery) and then off onto the route was a bit of a claustrophobic nightmare but it's nice that they uphold tradition and have the start/finish at the track as it makes it feel more athletic.
SUCH a flat course. Have ran a few XC races and Woodstock 12 a while back (9 hills and mini hills in between!) and this was definitely a positive.