In short: A bit disappointed In full: Support all the way around was fantastic, water stations & toilets well above average, but my overall impression was a bit disappointed mainly because of two of the main selling points of this race, "Baths wonderfull architecture" well apart from a small section around queens square the course seemed to have been purposely laid out to avoid the popular architectural areas. Secondly "Baths wide roads" however the reality is due to the two lap format on the first lap most people are compressed into half the road width. Even at my slow 2hr 10 min pace I spent the first lap dogging around people. Did the great south run last year twice as many people and nowhere near the same congestion.
The atmosphere , support and on the day organisation are first class but the course needs to be reviewed IMHO Date of review: March 12, 2012
In short: Marmite In full: This is a difficult race to rate, it is expensive, very expensive and the route is dull - 2 uninspiring laps but that said the crowds enroute are great and drag you along the ugly outskirts of Bath. Why do races that cost this much put a naff cotton t-shirt in the goodie bag which no-one wants, give us a tech-tee that we will actually wear. Races at a fraction of this price give out tech-tees! My second time running this (it fits well with my marathon schedule), but I'm not sure if I'll do it again due the cost, but then again I might as its easy to get too, (we used the train to get to Bath which was great, cheap and no parking issues to deal with) and the crowd support is fantastic! Perhaps this is my Marmite race, I'm just not sure if I love it or hate it! Date of review: March 12, 2012
In short: Brilliant race...loved it! In full: Although a very poor race for me in regards to time, due to my friend and running mate's illness and our later matching knee injuries(!)I absolutely loved it and wouldn't hesitate to do it again (even though it's expensive). The main plus point was the fantastic support given by the people of Bath all the way round the course - well done them. The organisation was also very good with loads of water/drinks stations, medical points & toilets. Yes the "large" t-shirt was a bit of a disappointment but I'll forgive them...see you next year! Date of review: March 12, 2012
In short: Big city race on a fairly fast course In full: The organisation was very good, and there was masses of support all the way round the course. The goody bag was better than most, and (unusually!) there seemed to be plenty of loos. Only a few minor negatives: a "one size fits all" T shirt, quite a bit of congestion at the start (and this is running from the "White" pen which is at the front), and rather a long queue for baggage reclaim even early on - would it have been better not to give all the faster runners numbers in the same block? But all in all, a nice Spring half marathon. Date of review: March 12, 2012
In short: Great experience but perhaps too large a race In full: A (too) warm day gave the day a special feel. Crowd support was amazing, but I welcomed the mile or so on the Lower Bristol Road where there were no spectators as it gave me a chance to watch my pace (the crowd support and music meant my pace was faster than I had planned). Good water and Lucozade stops. There were parts of the route that became too narrow, and too many cones on the road, and some runners stumbled over them. Goodie bag contained a welcome Mars bar (which, despite the heat, was nice and cold), an Eat Natural bar, nuts, and a T-shirt, plus the medal. However, despite finishing just under 2 hours, I was only offered a large t-shirt - more like a dress. I suppose I will use it pre-race another time! Would i do it again? Not sure, as I prefer smaller races, although I did love the support, which kept me going. It was mainly flat, with some small undulating parts, which kept it interesting, so the course suited me (and I liked the fact that it was two loops). However, I will see what other half marathons are available before making up my mind. Date of review: March 12, 2012
In short: Busy but nice In full: All in all thought it was great, loads of toilets, easy bag drop off, got in on the park and ride easy enough. I thought the course was fast and an amazing atmosphere although the weather probably helped in that, a great turnout by Bath. My only grumble being that I started in the green pen and was overtaking a load of white pen people within the 1st half mile and I didn't go off sprinting, I pretty much hit my time as specified. Bearing in mind I thought the the white pen was Elite/sub 1.30 there was no way a lot of the people in there were going to do that so just slowed up a lot of people behind.
In short: Very pleasantly surprised...have already entered next years!!! In full: I'd heard horror stories about this race on previous RW postings, and it was nothing like people had described!!! Lovely race with a brilliant atomosphere, well organised for a big city event. Hardly queued at all for the loo/bags etc (although lots of people seemed to be queuing for bags when there was no need to!!). I know its expensive but you get a lovely medal and goody bag. Well done Bath - See you next year! Date of review: March 12, 2012
In short: Crowded, not great marshelling but excellent crowds In full: Bath is well known for its great atmosphere and crowd support and it didn't let me down in that respect.
The course is not as flat as the organisers make out, there is one hill at the beginning of each lap, luckily the samba band gave me the push I needed to keep running up the hill! There is a slight climb in the middle of each lap as well but that wasn't too bad.
I don't understand why there were so many cones in the middle of the road especially at the beginning....they were a real hazard & seemed totally pointless. When emergency vehicles needed to drive down the route, the runners should have all been kept to the left hand side but it was different each time and the marshals were pretty useless in dealing with this....we were herded right then left then right again & that just caused confusion and a delay in the vehicles being able to get through. There was a real bottleneck at the start but we'd allowed enough time. The finish was pretty well organised although I didn't get asked what size t-shirt, just got handed a bag & it had a large (I had requested small) so that's a shame.
Overall it is a good race, great for beginners and experienced runners, although quite crowded making it difficult to get a pb for faster runners.