In short: Tough course and awful weather but enjoyable run In full: A good challenging course made that bit tougher by the weather - found running in the mud on the second lap quite draining. Well organised no frills event though (I see other runners not happy with the marshalling but seemed fine to me) and good value. Date of review: July 27, 2015
In short: Wet wet wet... In full: Really like RunThrough events. This one sadly was a total wash out due to the wonderful British, but still good challenging fun. The Marshalls sometimes looked a bit glum but given they were saturated i'll cut them a bit of slack. Great medal as always. Keep up the good work! Date of review: July 26, 2015
In short: Very wet but on my doorstep and a pleasant run In full: July 26th race started just as the rain started pouring down and finished just as the rain stopped! By the second lap the puddles were ponds and the course quite slippery in normal running shoes. I was careful to avoid puddles but was still squelching through the last few miles. Not as many hills as I thought there would be on the route - just need to get your head down and run up them. Plenty of downhills with gradual gradient though some that were steep and tricky. Needed a marsahll at the very first corner as a number of runners missed the first turn and saved themselves a minute of running. Course not particularly well signposted but just enough markers to guide you through. Organisers might want to consider taking the route behind the Windmill to avoid having to cross the road (though the crossing was well marshalled). With such a cold and wet day no need for water stops but these were nicely spread out along the course. I think a PB is hard - I think I lost a minute for the hills and another minute because of the puddles/ponds/boggy sections. Have signed up for the October run though. Would be nice to have the event named on the medal strap as mine is anonymous. Date of review: July 26, 2015
In short: Good course let down by marshalls In full: A very wet trail run today. Start was organised well and waves went off fine. However on the 2nd lap, by the time U.S. People at the back got there, a good few marshalls indicating the way had cleared off, even worse those marshalls took their direction signs with them. Kudos (not) to the Marshall who was meant to be turning runners off the path to the finish but was off picking water bottles up somewhere else. Finish was underwhelming. All the marshalls were packing up with not a single one at the finish or handing out medals or t-shirt. It was find the table and help yourself. Only had small and medium t-shirts left Date of review: July 26, 2015
In short: A London Trail Half with a double helping of steep hill In full: I completed this half yesterday, this was my first trail half, and my legs may never forgive me for running up that hill. Twice.
This is a nice half which goes up onto Wimbledon Common from the playing fields off the A3. The entry limit is quite small, so you don't feel overwhelmed by queues for loos or baggage drop off. There is a small car park if travelling by car.
The first 1.5 miles are mostly uphill. You then get to run round the common for about 3.5 miles, before heading back downhill a fairly steeply decline. But, don't be deceived, that hill is hard work, we are talking a gain of about 45m in elevation. Don't underestimate this hill as you have to do it twice as this is a two lap course. Without the hill, I'd say it was a fantastic course especially for a trail first timer. With the hill - well it certainly makes it a challenge.
It was really nice running under trees for part of the run, although at times a little humid as it had been raining. There was mud, but it wasn't too bad - the puddles were misleading though and caught a few runners in above their ankles. At one point in the lap (so twice in race) you have to cross the main road into the common. First time round there were some very angry hooting drivers queueing, Lots of thanks to all the marshals, but especially to those who were holding the cars in place and taking the abuse from drivers.
Water was provided in two spots on the course, so you could grab a bottle 4 times if you wanted. Much better than being provided with cups.
Coming back down towards the start of 2nd lap, and the finish, the descent was quite fast although bits of it were single file. But the only place I really worried about footing was once we'd reached the bottom of the hill where there were some truly unruly roots out to get you.
The finish was slightly cruel - you actually run past the finish and the music and cheers and then have to go up the bottom of that hill before you turn back towards the playing fields with a short run back across grass to the finish line.
What was lovely - Being announced by name as I crossed the line Friendly and encouraging marshals Flapjack, banana, a cotton t-shirt (slightly disappointed it wasn't technical, but event is only £24) and bottle of water all laid out on tables. Being high fived by a womble Of course the womble medal, although it is a little diddy, it is small and perfectly formed. Running, in London, through woods.
Only criticisms - they don't have a covered baggage area, if it rains your bag will get wet. No-one was handing out medals or directing you to where to get them, alhtough once I'd got over having run 13.1 miles I managed to locate the tables. It wasn't perfectly clear where to turn off at for the finish - being nearer the back of the pack, I just followed others, but if you are a quicker runner and lapping the slower folks, then it may have been less than obvious.
Despite swearing I would never enter another half during the second lap of this course, after I had run up that hill a second time - I want to do it again. Date of review: June 1, 2015
In short: A proper trail half marathon in London In full: I'd intended to do the October 2014 race but had to defer due to injury. Fortunately, today's (March 22nd) race had perfect conditions - cool but sunny, with virtually no mud. It's a two lap race with a couple of steep climbs at the beginning of each lap. The rest is pretty flat with a fast downhill stretch near the end. I managed a PB but then this was only my second half and I'm on the slow side. Organisation was good and I'm very happy with my Womble medal. There is also fruit and flapjacks at the finish and a T-shirt, so it's good value for money. The only downside is that it's on the "wrong" side of Wimbledon Common, public transport-wise, so I got a cab there rather than mess around with buses I was unfamiliar with, particularly as public transport tends to be a bit crap early on Sunday mornings. I walked back to Wimbledon station to get some blood into my aching legs and that took quite a while so I wouldn't recommend it as a means to getting there. The Womble medal is cool and they're different depending on which race you do. However, they gave a tennis racquet medal out for the race that took place around Wimbledon last year so if you want a Womble, pick Spring or Autumn instead. Date of review: March 22, 2015
In short: The Womble's is back in town In full: Having done this course twice...I finally cracked it and got a pb on the course. Yes, a little bit of organising at the end would not go amiss with the water but I did enjoy the course and the scenic and the challenging hills. Date of review: October 13, 2014
In short: good trail run In full: Really enjoyed the race and the route. I am generaly not keen on laps but on this race you really did not notice when you started the second lap. Slowstart with hills and mud but able to pick up the speed with downhill running. Overall the course was very good and far better for the knees than running on concrete. The nearest to trail running you can get in London!
Just a small grumble needs more attention to detail after the race. Many runners had to ask where the water was, the person giving out the medals did not know. I was told to ask the guy at the bag drop off but he did not know. Eventually came across a table right at the far end. 2 extremely large container water bottles were left with no organiser there to help. Very difficult to lift two of us had to lift to pour whilst another held the cups. One guy became a bit fed up with everyone asking him to pour the water whilst he had the large water bottle lifted as I think he was in much need to just drink water:)
Also did not pick up the teashirt after crossing the line no one there giving them out so like the water you had to go and look for them and it went of of my mind after the race.