In short: hard as nails In full: Ran this last year as well, both times completing the marathon course. This time I think somehow they have managed to make it even tougher! I have run most of the endurancelife CTS courses and I believe this is the hardest one they run and also probably the hardest marathon course I have ever run, so well done to everyone running this as their first trail event!! If you take a look at the finishing times it will give you the general idea, I am a 3hr marathon runner on the flat and it took me 5 and a half hours! There really are some very steep cliffs/hills here and although the conditions on the day were spot on, the course was very muddy in places due to all the recent rain, this made it hard for those of us at the front of the field and probably even worse for those at the back. The scenary was spectacular though and you really felt privileged to run in such a beautiful part of the country.
I have been running the endurancelife events for 3 years now and they have certainly got a lot busier than they were previously. Fortunately they are still extremely well organised so(for the marathon at least) I still found I could turn up half an hour before the race, park quickly, pick up my number and go to the loo without having to queue for ages and then run the race without tripping over too many people all the time (even while the number of runners at the event increasing from 600 to over a 1000 this year) This is why I like running in their events and will probably continue to pay the steep prices. I do think there could be scope to reduce the prices given the sudden increase in popularity (and revenue!) of these races.
I don't think you can criticise the organisers for the length of the course, this is a trail event and certainly not a pb course, they do warn you in the event briefing that the course isn't exact and they give you 'a bit extra'. Personally I quite like the medals they give out as well, I will continue to run in the cts events - they offer something a little bit different from the norm. Date of review: December 10, 2012
In short: There are better value races out there.... In full: Although the weather was kind, it appears from talking to other finishers that the distances were way out...not so bad for the 10k and half (or should that be 15 miles)but it is hard for those first time marathon/ultra participants to dig deep for the extra miles over very tough terrain. A very poor value event that I will not be repeating. Date of review: December 10, 2012
In short: hardest 10k I've ever done, but brilliant! In full: Although i 'only' did the 10k i think this event was brilliant. Compared to some the oragnisation was very good, and the processing of the registration and the finish procedure was excellent. Looking at some other comments, It is a shame that the longer races were so far out in the distances (the 10k was reasonably accurate), however it must be difficult to measure accurately over such terrain, only follow permitted paths, and still start and finish in the same place, after all its a little different from a road race? I liked the 'dogtag' medal, OK i know it was cheap but hey, it makes me look like i've survived! :-) made a change from an ordinary one. I thought the 'dibber' timing devices were a good idea, especially as an added touch you got a timing print out at the finish instead of waiting days to find out your time. Having done a few trail races i wasnt expecting anything but water at the water point, plus in the race instructions they do give you a mandatory kit list including energy bars/snacks/water - so you can be prepared. I thought the race was a great challange and definately the hardest 10k i've done. Yes Quite expensive as races go, but all in all a good experience. Next time i might try the half! Date of review: December 10, 2012
In short: Expensive In full: When is a marathon not a marathon?....when it's an Endurancelife Coastal "marathon" in Dorset.
I paid £49 for the marathon event for what?...a generic Endurancelife tee shirt, two gels, one plastic wristband (why?), one protein bar & one of the cheapest "medals" I have ever received. There was only water and few jelly babies at the drinks stations (the isotonic powder soon ran out for the slower runners. It would be interesting to see what other marathoners' Garmins read as mine showed 28.71 miles. I'm used to running ultras but I certainly felt sorry for those walking with several miles to go as they were of the opinion it would be close to 26.2 miles...not 2.5 miles longer which over the very tough terrain made a huge difference. The Dorset Doddle is a much better event at a third of the price that includes transport. I shall stick to VoTwo & Extreme Energy events in future. Date of review: December 9, 2012