In short: Mostly scenic, fast, organisation good apart from not getting number on time In full: Half this race is very scenic, but with some boring streets in last few miles. Apart from the rise up to two bridges over the Thames it is virtually flat.
The organisation on the day was good, and the marshals seemed to ensure a safe crossing of the few roads necessary without annoying drivers. I liked the idea of having a place to leave car keys securely separate from the baggage drop. There were plenty of drinks available at the end, and unusually also before the start - and two water stations en route. There was a reasonable atmosphere before the start, but the route and even the finish were quiet (at least by the time I got there!).
Despite entering on line weeks in advance I did not get my number in the post - it appears anyone who registered using the Runners World website had the same problem. I don't know whose fault it is, but it needs fixing - and at least numbers and chips where given out efficiently on the day.
Last year the event clashed with a mass cycle ride along the Thames and whoever avoided a repeat of that deserves thanks. Date of review: September 12, 2010
In short: Great Race, Great Organisation, Great Day In full: I really enjoyed this event, everything was well organised, a great route, great turnout and great weather, what more can you ask for a great goodie bag!!!!!!! no thank you to organisers and marshalls. Date of review: September 17, 2009
In short: Great race, great value, great weather! In full: First time I'd done this race. Very friendly atmosphere and well-marshalled. Start/finish could be more clearly marked. Ditto what everyone else has said about the cyclists - organisers of both should check next year to make sure they don't clash again. Will definitely be back. Date of review: September 10, 2009
In short: Flat, very scenic in parts, good organisation - but still some scope for improvement In full: There is much that is very good about this race - the organisation at the start and finish and the marshalls along the course were all excellent; the flat course has definite PB potential (especially if like me you have not done this unusual distance before!) the scenery in the middle section beside the river was difficult to beat; and the wooded section near the end was an unexpected bonus - but there were also a couple of miles of classic suburbia.
The clash with the cycling event was unfortuante and can hopefully be avoided in future. Others have commented on the lack of cosideration by cyclists. On the contrary I thought they were mostly very tolerant, especially when some runners were being inconsiderate to them running 3 or 4 abreast making it very difficult for them to pass.
The 4 and 5 mile markers did not seem to exist, despite the Runners World website saying they would be every mile. If it is not possible to fix markers along the towpath then just two more marshalls holding markers would have solved the problem.
Two other differences from what was said on the RW website were that the bag storage was not supervised and the medal and goody bag turned out to be a bag containing a medal and the only "goody" was advertising. Not an issue in itself, but what is not going to be delivered should not be promised. Date of review: September 8, 2009