In full: Having been always too late to register for the last couple of years and even though I was pretty ill the week before I had no intention of not running this year!
The start was a little cramped and where I started behind the 2:15:00 marker we weren't even sure the race had started for a good while. But when things got started it was a very open run with definite potential of gaining PBs. Even being a little worse for ware I still ended up with a respectable 1:56:14.
Although the lack of crowd on the bypass made that bit a little quiet, the most difficult part was running past my house at the 4 mile mark!
Overall, a great race. If you don't know Cardiff, it's a great way to see the city. Date of review: October 24, 2011
In short: Great day out In full: For first half marathon, was a little apprahensive, but the crowds of spectators cheering you along was great. Not particularly scenic but then with 15,000 runners it was always going to be a practical route that fitted everyone in, over the park of other years. Too much of a bottle neck though for my liking in the last mile. Where I wanted to stretch the pace and push for the finsh it came down to a narrow fenced path that could only fit 4 abreast at best, slowing me right down so I didn't trip myself up. Date of review: October 23, 2011
In short: An enjoyable well organised race In full: After the anti-climax of last year(in terms of the short course)I was hoping for better this year. I wasn't disappointed. Of course the dual carriageway is not as scenic as the parks but was required to accommodate the size of the field. Unlike last year I found I had plenty of room to run and didn't encounter any bottlenecks. There was a slight incline along the dual carriageway but nothing to be unduly concerned about and it was still possible to run a pb (why i did in just outside 1.45 :-)). Over all a well organised enjoyable run. I will be back next year Date of review: October 21, 2011
In short: A trip down memory lane In full: I went to university in Cardiff 25 years ago. I never thought I'd be back to run a half marathon. I enjoyed the race, seeing all my old haunts and although I didn't get a PB due to a dodgy knee, the race definitely has PB potential. Plenty of crowd support, well marshalled, well organised. HINT. Stay in the Travelodge Atlantic Wharf and you can roll out of bed and onto the start line, with no need to queue for the toilets! Date of review: October 21, 2011
In short: Vibrant city half marathon with PB potential In full: A well organised race on a course with plenty of PB potential. Others have commented on the course being dull on dual carriageway stretch. This is true but because there's 15,000 runners wide roads have to be used. A return to more scenic route (especially if including parks) could accommodate a mere fraction of that. There's a high volume of participants because race organisers want maximum income from charity fundraisers.
Luckily members of local running club, Les Croupiers, helped out this year, ensuring the course was correct length and the event well organised and properly marshalled. Does need more even spread of water stations though.
The course is NOT hilly - there are some undulating sections meaning it is not dead flat but elevations are steady and mostly slight. The definition of hills in Wales is a LOT different than a couple of slip roads! The course is much better than the Bristol Half.
In short: could be so much better In full: first 6 miles flew by but the dual carriage way dragged on a bit. The goody bag was poor and the t shirt not great for the cost of the event. Was my first half for over 20 years but has not put me off already planning my next race just not Cardiffs not on my list. Date of review: October 20, 2011
In short: Definitely good potential but dual carriageways are for cars, not runners... In full: I enjoyed this year, mainly as it was full length (having been deprived of a 1:21 PB last year) but because there were groups at the front for pace. Ideally, it should be further grouped for people further down the list speed-wise. The dual carriageway was a bit dull but the support along there was great; and having run up the slip roads again tonight, i did notice a very slight incline but didn't on race day. Surely it's nothing worth complaining about as most people would train a bit before daring to try 13 miles?! Cardiff has great green space and Cathedral Road/Bute Park have been great in the past but some of the park's paths aren't wide enough. Penarth marina, Barrage, WMC and Castle are nice things to run past, as would be the stadium. I'll definitely be there next year. Date of review: October 20, 2011
In short: Dull In full: Expected a much more interesting course but was disappointed by the over use of the dual carriage way and lots of non-descript scenery. Crowd was a little underwhelming too... Date of review: October 20, 2011