In short: Friendly atmosphere, good for first timers. In full: At the start of the event: I liked the fact that there wasn't too much hanging around to start with. There were sensible staggered timing 'pens' which seemed to work, so the transition out onto the course was quite smooth and wasn't jostling in the crowds. Good course, the first half was more up-hill than I'd realised, but not overly hilly. Nice downhill sections in the second half. Lots of marshalls around the course, lots of local supporters too. Not too many participants, which is good as it meant I didn't have to weave in and out of other runners. Medal and decent t-shirt in goodie bag meant I was happy with that. Only downsides really were having to wait for the online results (took about a day, not ages but was longer than other races I'd participated in recently). Overall a good race. Date of review: September 21, 2011
In short: Nice and Friendly event, more 'undulating' than I thought. In full: Appeared to be a nice friendly event, pockets of support throughout the race that helps me keep my spirits up. More undulating than I expected during the first half, but welcome downhills for the second.
Nice stadium finish and being urged on to dip at the line for under 2 hours cheered me up.
PA system at the start meant you couldn't hear the countdown or the fact there were pacers so maybe next year have speakers for the slower runners at the bak, otherwise, I'd recommend this event. Date of review: September 19, 2011
In short: Nice flat course through suprising scenery In full: Thoroughly enjoyable race. COuld do with slightly more drinks stops and better marshalling (I got sent the wrong way!) but a great "flat" race with good PB potential. I smashed my PB by 3 mins down to 81 mins, so very happy. Date of review: September 19, 2011
In short: Today I found my inner child! In full: Its hard to know what to say about this race really. The organisation leading up to the race was less than perfect with a last minute change to chip collection from posting which caused some consternation and a promise from the race organisers that people entering as "early birds" would receive a free NB tech t-shirt to train in if they applied by a certain date in March. The t-shirts eventually arrived after much begging a couple of weeks ago. The promised car park pass was missing for the second year in a row and I really wanted to DNS. So glad I didn't! Weather was ATROCIOUS. No getting away from that but you can hardly blame the RO's for it! The chip collection looked smooth and organised and the start was on time. Crowd were amazing. They came out with their wellies and brollies and cheered us on - some even brought drums and vuvuzelas! The terrain underfoot was EXTREMELY poor in places and it was impossible to keep your feet dry. The extended section through the woods turned the course into something from Hellrunner! Marshalls were friendly, encouraging and attentive. No complaints about water stations and there were adequate toilets on the route (though 20 loos for 2,500 people at the start isn't great - especially when three of them are lying on the ground on their side and the park toilets are locked!) Medal at the end is brilliant, goody bag was fine but OH didn't get a finishers t-shirt! He got one of the training tees we'd waited 6 months for! He wasn't happy... Stadium finish is great and it was easy enough to get out afterwards. RO's did a good job on the day in extreme circumstances. Tech t shirts are a rarity these days in your goody bag and its nice to get a decent one. Date of review: October 4, 2010
In short: nice race- 1 gripe tho....send us the numbers in the post- dont make us collect them on race morning In full: this review os for the 2010 race actually - but there wasnt an option for that. as above really i think the race numbers and chips should be sent out to us - its not good to have to collect them race morning- adds to the stress and i personally have a lot of medical info to write on the back so for the price we pay - they should be sent out to us really . apart from that a great race - lovely route .see you next year . Date of review: October 3, 2010
In short: Nice place In full: Generally enjoyed my first half marathon even though my foot was killing me from mile 3! The locals were brilliant in their support especially out on the quieter sections of the course. Found a few bits of the course such as the contra flow through Appleton Thorn and the path through the park to be slightly narrow but overall it was a nice run. Date of review: October 12, 2009
In short: Fabulous event and a must-do for me next year In full: Value: The New Balance technical T-shirt is excellent quality with an attractive commemorative design and far better than the usual tatty cotton Tee that you would never wear again. I'll be training and competing in this quality item.
The medal is a nice, solid, chunky item that has impressed all of my non-running friends and looks like a proper reward for 13.1 miles of effort! Along with race entry and as much free Lucozade as I could glug / carry away with me, I'd call it excellent value for money for a big event
Course: Testing first 6 miles on a slight, but noticeable upwards gradient meandering through rural Warrington... followed by a faster 2nd half in a gently downwards direction for a fast time! The course will have to avoid a couple of bottlenecks as it grows over the next couple of years though, but its a good route for both beginners and PB chasers. The finishing lap of the running track is an inspired idea which gives a real "grandstand finish".
Atmosphere: Fabulous throughout. Warrington is a friendly town, and this attitude rubbed off on spectators and competitors alike. Local support and drummer band en route were very enthusiastic, as were the excellent marshalls. Real sense of camaraderie amongst the field, and a proper "feel good factor"! I've been on a high all week!
Conclusion: This is an excellent event that looks certain to grow in size and stature each year. A few minor glitches were to be expected this year and the highly profesional team behind the event will have them ironed out by next year. Elite, enthusiat and charity running beginner were all equally catered for an made to feel valued. Really enjoyed this and cant recommend it highly enough!