In short: well organised. Low admin race In full: the only negative would be the goody bags. All I wanted after my race was a banana and there was none available. also the bottle neck at the end was rather frustrating and how we could actually get "out" once we had finished the race - had to cross the road where the 16milers were running. Also I would pay more to get a free T-shirt for the race and not have to pay for it separately. Date of review: April 3, 2006
In short: Start and finish area were poorly organised, race was ok. In full: Most people have said everything I wanted to say but here goes anyway.
The start was dreadful, I appreciate that the race is 8.2 miles and this is an unusal distance but most runners would have some idea as to how long they would take, even sub 1hr / over 1hr markers would have helped with lining everyone up. Everyone mixed in together realy made the start awkward and all this seemed surprising when the organisers had gone to so much trouble to highlight posts within the shopping area. Having said that why do people who know they're not fast insist on standing at the front!!
If the start had been better organised then the river route (which is great) would have been much easier to run. The field was still sorting it's self out and as a result people were all over the place - it didn't help with it raining the night before with everyone avoiding the puddles as well.
Anyway things settled down and the running was enjoyable if not over too many broken paving slabs. The water station on the grass was a bit tricky, again due to the rain!!
The finish had no clock - or I didn't see it, either way not great when you're finishing.
The finish channels weren't long enough at the end and it was not obvoius where to go after this - free lucuozade was most welcome - bag store was badly set up and very vulnerable to theft. A few more barriers and a clear entrance would have helped with this.
All this said it is an enjoyable run if not a little crazy at the start. Public support at the finish was very welcome. With a few minor touches it could be great, i.e. please sort out the start for next time!!!!!!!!! Date of review: April 3, 2006
In short: Good, although the organisation could have been better. In full: It was the first time I had done this. As a beginner, it was a shame that the odd one or two 'elitists' had to shout so agressively and cut people up! Also, as previous people have mentioned, the start was very slow, as was the finish - especially in handing in the barcode strips. I didn't even bother with the goodie bags! Would do it again though, as I live in the area and there was a good atmosphere. Date of review: April 3, 2006
In short: 8.2 start poor very slow for first mile due to numbers , path by river was nice but to narrow for numbers at times , finish was also poor waited to long to collect materials and then ended up in an area which was difficult to get out of to go home Date of review: April 3, 2006
In short: Finish badly organised In full: Would agree with other reviewers. Finish was badly organised. Had to queue for 5 minutes in the cold to hand in tag which has no real relevance. Really needs accurate chip timing. Also water stations were cups rather than water bottles, would have thought Human Race could organise bottles. Thames path part of the course is good though. Date of review: April 3, 2006
In short: Really enjoyed it, but much too busy at the start In full: The start of the race was frustrating as it took me 30 seconds to cross the start line followed by a very slow jog then serious pegging it through the field to try and get a decent postion.
Once we got out of the town centre the pace opened up well and the run along the river was really nice.
This was my first race in 20 years and I did really enjoy it. The atmosphere with the other runners was great. Thanks to the guy who on my shoulder for most of the race for pushing me round in a decent time.
The organisation was ok. The toilets weren't as bad as I was led to expect, but I was disapointed I didn't get my mug at the end just a back of leaflets.
I did the 8.2 and I definitely be back for the 16 next year. Date of review: April 3, 2006
In short: wonderful route In full: The was end it a bit of a disaster and should have a longer walk out after the race and runners should not just have to stop and stand in a queue. Race chips would be much better why where those pointless tags collected in? They do not reflect the position of the runners, as someone I ran with the hole way and finished at the same time handed in there tag about 20 people behind me because his queue was slower pointless. Date of review: April 3, 2006
In short: Busy race - not particularly exciting In full: Havn't read many of the other reviews but I didn't particularly enjoy this race. The first part along the river is pleasant but after that it's just pavement pounding. I went round with a friend who hadn't trained so we were at the back of the pack and had to put up with the elite runners doing the 16m pounding past us - some were a bit pushy, and I thought that they must have a fairly horrible race trying to get past all the 8 milers. The elite runners also ended up running on the road a lot which probably isn't that safe as there was a fair amount of traffic. The organisation at the end was fairly poor, and the 'goody' bag was just ads and the mug isn't particularly exciting. Wouldn't do this again unless I really needed to do a 16m training run. Date of review: April 3, 2006
In short: I enjoyed it, but it could have been so much better with better organisation behind it In full: having read everyone else's frustrations, I thought I would add my own. I did the 8 miler and was also frustrated by the narrowness of the first 3 miles and the fact that all comers set off together (it can't be that hard to try stagger the 8 mile start).
Was also annoyed that there was no clock at the finish and they actually charged money for the pitiful and unsecured baggage store and that not all junctions were marshalled.
if it were a small, poor club organising the race then I would feel more tolerant, but Human Race, frankly, can do better than this, bearing in mind the amount they charged for the race.
On the plus side, it is a relatively big event which has its own adrenalin rush and fun factor. And the river section is lovely (if only less people had run 3 abreast along it while I was trying to get past!)
probably would do it again, probably the 16 miler as it is a useful 'bit more than half marathon' distance. Date of review: April 3, 2006