In short: Better organisation and a few tweaks and this could be good In full: I probably don't need to go into all the negatives as others have covered those. Despite being there an hour and a half before the scheduled start I still think it was the right decision to delay the start. Toilets were a fiasco and the bag drop just needs to be turned around 90degrees against the back fence to prevent chaos in the queues.
Agree with the Gatorade and water comments and the first thing my wife said when finishing was "Was there supposed to be music on the course"
I did enjoy the course and the hills were nothing to be feared, they were a lot shorter than I first thought.
My Garmin also put this as 427m over length and you should have heard me swear when I thought I had nearly finished only to see the 750m signs.
I also agree that a goody bag should have been given out. Ok so I have mentioned all the same negatives.....
I might do this one again but only if I can't get into the Royal Parks Half. Date of review: September 28, 2010
In short: Froze to death for 2 hours due to delayed start. Became hungry and grumpy. Needed the loo for 4 miles. No goody bag at end. In full: As this was my first half and indeed my first race, I was rather hoping for something a little more. I failed to experience any race-buzz mainly due to the terrible organisation and the lack of support.
I agree with other remarks about the lack of water and the ridiculously large gatorade bottles. I was just gagging for some water!
I nearly didn't take my iPod but was so glad I did as the majority of the run was without the music; the mini transit van stages didn't pump out much 'toonage!'
Wouldn't do it again and wasn't the best introduction into the world of running, especially as it was meant to be a lead-in to the London Marathon.
Just was a bit gutted as had really trained hard for the race and failed to get any where near my PB training time. I blame the 2 hours pre-race wait.
Oh well, you win some! x Date of review: September 28, 2010
In short: It was late to start , but once going, i enjoyed the route and the support!! In full: Thought it was a good route the hills were manageable and subtle, bar 1 which was a good challenge.It meant a downhill second half to the race with some flat spots which I thought worked well. For me this was my second half marathon and certainly a lot quicker 1hr 42PB I did the Dartford half in 2hrs and that has some hills can tell you!!! Will probably do it again and I can understand the organisers intensions about delaying the race but people do know what time it starts and how far it takes to get there. Lets just say it's unfair to the vast majority that made the effort to arrive on time. Date of review: September 28, 2010
In short: Traffic problems (both ways) and delayed start marred the day In full: This was my first half marathon and although the large field gave me some comfort that I would not finish last it also meant that I did not cross the start until 11am which after a 45min delay was one and a quarter hours after I expected. Earlier on I noticed people taking handfuls of the foil sheets - I wish that I had taken at least one because I nearly froze solid whilst waiting in my pen. The route itself was hilly but not terrible and probably would have been nicer to run if I had not been so hungry by the start. It is not a pretty route until you get to Greenwich park (mile10) but unlike other reviews I found the crowd to be friendly and encouraging even if they did say the wrong things "Only 10 more miles to go" "Well done, that is halfway". LOL Date of review: September 28, 2010
In short: Expensive In full: Having completed numerous half marathons over 15yrs of running, this was probably the most disorgansied half i have ever run. The race start was delayed for the second time in 3 years. I have never known a big event like this delay the start!! The water stations supplied little cups of water which you could not drink from whilst running, yet supplied massive bottles of energy drink, why not make the energy drink bottles smaller and provide bottled water? At the end the q's for the baggage were massive and it was chilly and although i was not one of them, i felt sorry for people finishing outside 2-2.5 hours as there were no 'goodies' (energy bars/drinks etc) left as some runners were walking away with full crates, surely this should have been marshalled? Apart from that the course was not a bad course and despite the poor organisation would probably do it again. Date of review: September 28, 2010
In short: Good big race atmosphere, but not enough music given the theme! In full: Enjoyed the nice downhill section through Greenwich park, although missed the ten mile marker whilest enjoying the views, which didn't do my spirits much good! Date of review: September 28, 2010
In short: Did I miss the music?? In full: First time at this event and really only came because of the advertised music feature. Didn't really notice the music apart from the live stages, especially during the hour we stood in the cold at the delayed start! Foil blankets ran out so we shivered. Thought music on route a bit lack lustre and organisers on route didn't seem bothered.Residents were much more enthusiastic, well done to those who played music from houses. Chaos getting water etc after the race, I also saw people walking off with armfuls of bars/water. A bottle of water at the end would have been good - we finished in two hours so heaven help later runners. Surely a goody bag with t shirt and water not too much to ask? Not sure why the start was delayed. If all route organisers were in place why not let people start as they arrive. Delay meant I missed my tain back to liverpool so had to buy a new ticket. Along with tube problems extra travel ended up being very expensive, shame when you are running for charity. Enjoyed the route though and the atmosphere amongst the runners. Would suggest to others running next year to take your ipod. Sorry but I wouldn't return to this event. Billed as a music event but no better than any other half marathon really. hope feedback taken onboard as this could be so much better. Date of review: September 28, 2010
In short: Run to WHAT beat?! In full: Ok, so the transport delays weren't the fault of the race organisers but standing around in the cold for hours was not a good start to the day. It was also a slow start. I was in pen 4 and it took me over half an hour to get over the start line.
I was surprised by the lack of music; A couple of bands and a few speakers dotted around. There was more music coming out of spectators houses!
The energy drinks that were given out on the course were far too big and much was wasted.
I'm very glad I hadn't handed in by bag as the queues to retrieve them were ridiculous.
Despite my negative comments, I did enjoy the race, there were a few challenging hills that I was happy to have completed without walking and some of it was quite scenic considering it's a city.
In short: Dull, beat-less and disappointing In full: I think this has to rank at the bottom of all the races I've ever done.
What a con - Run to the Beat? What beat? Crap music piped from a transit van every 3 or 4 miles does not constitute scientifically placed music to help motivate runners. The music people played from their houses was better!
The course was dull for the most part, possibly not helped by the miserable weather I suppose. Some of the crowd support was fun - I liked the little kids holding their hands out.
Oh - and thanks to the selfish runner who ran in front of me to take a whole handful of jelly babies that a spectator was handing to me. Git.
At the end, I didn't even see where I could get a cereal bar or shower gel so I just got a medal and a bottle of water - and I came in the top 1300 so there must have been stuff left. I'm pretty disgusted at the runners who took whole trays of stuff, and at the lack of marshalls to ensure that didn't happen. Next time, how about a t-shirt and a goody bag? After paying £35, that's the least I expected.
Anyway, I smahed my PB so it's not all bad, but I won't be doing this one again. Date of review: September 28, 2010
In short: Stuck in the middle with you ..... In full: As usual Londons transport never seems to disappoint + getting to this race was hard enough once you hear of the cancellations and 30 minute wait for the next tube.
"Run to the Beat" felt like a gimmick at times.
Extremely long queues to collect the bags at the end it was windy and freezing cold. Not had to queue this long in other events Brighton Half Marathon / London Marathon.
Good to have gel stops + energy bar stops on the way.
But overall disappointing. Date of review: September 28, 2010