In short: ‘Just don't do it’ In full: A great run if you like being herded into a confined space for a long period of time, in prison like dress, little food or water and left feeling thoroughly advertised at. Wondering when freedom will come and why Moby really has to shout that much. Being eventually let out into the sometimes dangerously dark streets with even less water. Given the surroundings I'm almost glad it was so dark. Nike should seriously look at the reaction from the crowd in the stadium, especially those whose warm up was to consist of 3 hours standing in the cold. Date of review: September 1, 2008
In short: Good once we were off In full: This was my first 10k and I would have liked a little more idea as to when I'd actually be running. We live in Bedfordshire and left home at 4:00, thinking we'd be running by 6:30. We didn't manage to leave the stadium until after 8, when it was dark as we were soaked to the skin after being made to stand on the pitch in the rain for twenty minutes, while we were encouraged to 'warm up'. Route was ok, tho there were a couple of bottle-necks (due to puddles in the main but also a narrowing of the route just before the waterstation). The mob scrabbling for their end of race t-shirts was a little unsettling and I admired the patience of Nike staff who had to deal with some very rude people who snatched t-shirts without a please or thank-you.
To sum up, I am pleased I did it and I now properly have the running bug but really Nike didn't do us any favours keeping us coralled in Wembly for a couple of hours. Date of review: September 1, 2008
In short: tedious and ugly route based on the glamour of starting in Wembley stadium. In full: Ugly smelly route past stinking dumpsters, consertina route mainly through the car park of the stadium and petrol stations. Too many hairpins and on a wet day it doesn't make it easier.
Being forced to watch a concert that I really wasn't bothered about and having no room to warm up apart from static stretching.
Medals are always nice but the souvenir tee was good enough, even if dusting off your rugby skills to get one was necessary.
Atmosphere was good but I'm afraid Nike dropped the ball on this one. Hopefully they'll get back up to their usually good standard next year. Date of review: September 1, 2008
In short: Running on the pitch at Wembley, two technical tees - well worth getting wet for. In full: So it was wet! - You got a pretty flat fast course with good opportunity for a PB. It was my first big event and I enjoyed running in such a big group with plenty of encouragement from the stewards and bands to help us along the way. Could have been a bit earlier but nevertheless a thrill to turn up at Wembley with the arch lit up and perform. Easily my most memorable race! Date of review: September 1, 2008
In short: From Oxford Street to Wembley In full: Having done the North v South Run in Hyde Park, was quite looking forward to this. Like the North v South race Nike leave you with an air of mystery surrounding the exact format of the day, issuing very little info about timings and format beforehand. Whilst this can lead to an air of excitement it can also leave you feeling very let down if they don't live up to expectations. The latter is the case here and nike are being lazy if they think their name is enough to get people to sign up. More info please. I'd forgotten that you have to make the trip to Nike Town to pick up the race bag; a poorly put together package in plain plastic bag that they had to open up to place a wrist band and timing chip in. Was given no explanation about the wrist band at the time. Also received a voucher for 15% off if I spent over £100, I'd left work in Maidenhead early to make the trip up and back on a Friday afternoon costing me a few quid so wasn't tempted. If I'd remembered this I would not have entered. Expected the odd delay and knew the bands were on beforehand so can excuse this to a certain extent but being in Wave 1 expected to get off earlier than 7:35ish. Quite gratifying after reading the reviews that I am not the only one to be confused by the music. I told the wife afterwards I was in the wrong demographic at 38 years old for this type of thing but it appears I wasn't the only one who was left bemused! Pendulum's lead singer/cheerleader was interesting! In summary:
Good: 1)Text updates and text with finish time immediatley after event 2) 2 t-shirts 3) Being on the Wembley pitch - renewed respect for the amount of ground Becks and the guys have to cover! 4)Found a free car park yards from Wembley Park Tube, a hidden gem, sorry not very green but hey it was raining! 5) The red snake making it's way round Wembley Car Park did actually look good! 6) Paula and Seb
Bad: 1) Narrow / Dangerous start 2) Congested finish 3) Rain (not Nike's fault) 4) Terrible route 5) Lack of medal - mind North v South medal not great! 6) Nike Town Trip 7) Lack of info
Overall: Naughty Nike, must do better, you know you can! Irony: Wasn't the race director interviewed for the latest edition of Runners World? Date of review: September 1, 2008
In short: What were they thinking? In full: This was my fifth Nike 10k. I enjoyed the other 4 immensely and was a bit disappointed last year when the run went missing. But, what happened this year? Was there any local knowledge used? Do industrial estates look kinda scenic on google maps? Nobody who has ever run a 10k would slap a 2 hour concert and general entertainment/advert infront of it. Everbody's keyed up and ready to go RUNNING. Herding people onto the pitch so there's no room to warm up, I assume just so they can get some good crowd shots was not helpful. On the run, when it finally arrived, I found it difficult to spot the km markers for pacing - probably because I was trying to stay upright. It felt a lot like running round an IKEA car park. Maybe we were running around a IKEA car park. And where's my medal? And where's the video of the finish line? Date of review: September 1, 2008
In short: Nike - Don't you understand runners at all? In full: There's not much else to say that hasn't already been raised by other disappointed runners. The mood wasn't good as a lot of people were ready to go home long before their Wave started. Surely Nike understand that runners want to run, not dance. No-one could do their usual warm up and cold, stiff muscles made for an under-par and disappointing slog for a lot of people. I thought we would never get out of the Stadium and the general mood was pretty grim - people had lost the will to live, let alone run. There was no account taken as to how people would get home after the late start and the organisation was fairly dire.
The highlight of the evening for me was confirmation that Paula was still in working order and hadn't done herself any permanent damage in Beijing.
So, we ended up "Just Doing It" but gaining no real enjoyment or sense of purpose from the exercise - maybe that's why we only came 5th in the list of cities. My Garmin (which is normally fairly accurate) showed a significant over-distance - did anyone else think it was long?
All in all, probably the worst and most dull and depressing race I can ever remember taking part in. Should there have been a medal? I certainly think we all earned one and more for the chaos we had to make the best of. Take note Nike, this "after dark" fiasco was NOT a good idea and you are in danger of exhausting the patience of even your most loyal followers. Will I be there next year? - I think not!! Date of review: September 1, 2008
In short: Pity In full: I personally can't and won't say bad things about this race as I enjoyed my run and had a fun evening. However, I can and do totally 100% understand why this race is taking the kicking it is receiving. I made sure I started at the very front of Wave 1 having seen previous Nike 10k results and the top 30 finishing times. I finished 18th off the gun over the line so warranted my making my way to the front (I promise I'm not one of those walk after 2k people!). Because of this my race experience is very different to the majority of others. I had no crowds, I had free reign at the end of movement and getting hold of a white running top and I did it just as another 10k. I had 2 friends come with me to watch the gig, they loved it - they saw Paula up close, had some drinks at Club level, and went straight to the finish line to see me in. They looked after my gear so no need for baggage store, and then we went and got a drink at the nearby bar. Then took a walk over to the easily located Wembley Park tube station. I was a little let down with no medal, but I do like the finishers top. The scenery was horrific - Tesco petrol station, industrial estates and roads. Nice to see the illuminated arch quite a few times, but thankfully with me concentrating on running hard I had the blessing of not having to look around much or I'd have been depressed. The course was so winding - I didn't think I ran that poorly that my time was way down on expectation and looking at some of the top guys they were down too. The course was 10k or near as possible. My Garmin said 10.04 and I ran a clear course. It seemed to be pretty accurate - maybe those who have it longer had to dodge people and not have a great racing line? I liked Pendulum very much, had fun dancing along up front but hated Moby. Boring, soulless and painful having to wait for him to finish. Having to wait to start the run for ages was not pleasant.
I think Nike have a job on their hands to try and quell all the fallout from this race - they'd be smart to take a leaf out of the books of regular race organisers who know what runners want and how to provide it, rather than have the marketing machine tell us runners what we want and how it will be done.
For £30 it is an enormous rip-off to get aggravated on a Sunday evening. I'm sorry for all of those who had this happen to them. Date of review: September 1, 2008