In short: Great first HM In full: (This is for the 2015 run) My first half - really enjoyed it (bar the last 2 miles, long straight road to the stadium). Weather was on the warmer side but water stations and sports drinks well run and plenty to spare. Great support the whole way round, locals making the effort to cheer runners on really made the difference. And a pub handing out beer half way round also! I was the second last pen to start, did seem slightly laboured but nothing major and to be expected with nearly 17,000 starters. Overall a great first half with only one 'hill' towards the start. One to do again. Date of review: March 24, 2015
In short: Great race and brilliant finish In full: One of my first half marathons and still one of my favourites. I lived in Reading at the time so the roads were all familiar. Reading isn't too exciting but the course makes the best of the town and the finish in the Madejski Stadium is spectacular. I don't understand people complaining that they were "always on a slight incline". That's physically impossible in a race which starts and finishes in the same place. Besides hills are a part of running. If you aren't pushing yourself a bit there's no point.. Date of review: November 19, 2012
In short: Fantastic race, great organisation, and lovely course In full: I can't say anything bad about the 2011 race. I traveled down to do it with my sister, and had a great day out, and a new PB! Also her first race, which I think she enjoyed :-)
I still however have no idea how they make the course so good, I just hope the same team put on more events! Date of review: September 3, 2012
In short: Brilliantly organised, and great course In full: Reading isn't a city you think of as being great for running (no offense guys), but somehow this course is just fantastic. The only downer is the long slog back up to the stadium. even then though you have a closed road, and a stadium finish ahead!
Special mention should also be given to the start, where they properly put the fast people at the front to remove any slowdowns.
A huge well-done for a great race. Date of review: September 3, 2012
In short: Thanks to the people of Reading In full: First time dong this run and found the support from the crowd unusually good.
I stayed at the Madjeski hotel so parking etc. was not an issue and organisation was good, though too many people climbed into unallocated starting pens as they were late arriving making the start congested with slower runners.
Drink stations frequent, supplemented by many unofficial drink and jelly baby stations along the way.
Stadium finish makes this run and I feel it churlish to say that you are not in there long enough. All points about fluids not being available for some time at finish are correct.
Course is pretty much flat ( certainly no Tunbridge Wells ) and had I not been struck down with a bug, a good potential for a PB (many thanks to the 1.40 pace maker incidentally).
Will be back next year. Date of review: April 5, 2012
In short: A good race that would be great with a few tweaks In full: Firstly it's not flat, it's mainly flat! Also, a long (.5 mile?) loop around to get back the stadium is just bad planning, add a mile somewhere else, you can see the stadium 2 miles before you get there.
It took about 10 minutes to get from the finish line to the water, which must be fixed. Foil, medal, chip removal and goody bag can wait, get us the fluids!
All that said it is a good race and I felt the organization was good excepting the above points. It is big but the advantage is no problems your way to the race village, and the stations on route were all well manned with plenty of local support as well. Date of review: April 5, 2012
In short: I really enjoy everything about this race...except the last 2 miles. In full: I've lived in Reading for 25 years so I'm probably biased but this is my favourite half marathon. I know every twist and turn and I have lots of friends running or watching which helps. To be honest though, there is so much public support for the runners that I'm not sure that it mattered. The people of Reading are very encouraging and supportive.
There was a "pinch point" near the Abbey ruins and the last 2 miles is far from attractive but other than that I think it is a fabulous and well organised event.
I didn't have problems with my race pack, although the car park permit was a bit late but it still arrived in time.
Loved the Mizuno VIP lounge too !
If I can keep the fitness levels up then I'll be back next year. Date of review: April 4, 2012