In short: A Little Better than 2014 In full: Ran this race for the fourth time in 2016. As I've said before it's a great race to start the year with, and good as part of any training for a spring half marathon. After the chaotic race in 2014 in which we had to dodge cars and pedestrians, plus the technical t-shirt which the print came off after a wearing it a few times, I'd had a break in 2015. This time the original route had been restored, however there were a lot more runners this time. The race couldn't be started at the earlier time of 9am due to the traffic queue to get in to the park. After standing around in the freezing cold we were off, and all went well, until the last couple of miles where someone decided to direct all the traffic out of the park via the race route, as opposed to the way we all came in! There was barely enough room to run up that hill without all the traffic as well! Crossing the finish line, I nearly missed my medal, but after picking it up I found I had a 2013 medal! I guess there were a few left over, and the organisers thought it would be a good way to get rid of the remaining medals from that year. Race is still photographed by the great Phil O'Connor photography, I look forward to seeing their photos when they are available. Date of review: February 8, 2016
In short: such a shame In full: I wouldn't recommend this race normally due to several problems. But the scenery and the lovely lion head medal makes it worth signing up for one year. However I wouldn't do it again. The first issue was the race being moved forward an hour quite late on in the process. It affected runners who needed to get trains in although the organisers did allow deferring to next year. On the day the issues began with getting into the park. 50 mins stuck in non moving traffic which seemed to be down to some arguing between staff members about how to deal with it. The start line was farcical- it was impossible to get to the end of the queue easily. Lots of cars were still trying to come in so the start time come and went. No messages were effectively passed along so when the starting horn went off, most runners seemed a little shocked. The late comers had to just start as they turned up. The route itself was clearly marked out, however the marshalling was sparse and the ones that were around didn't make eye contact, no encouragement and no conversation. One Marshall was just sat in her car! The local villagers apparently didn't know the race was taking place so they were annoyed. The route was 3 loops which were very hilly but the scenery is gorgeous. The quick runners had whipped round and were trying to drive out of the park and it became really quite busy en route with cars as us slower runners were still completing the race. The finish was clearly laid out but only sparkling water was available (?) and my medal has 2013 on the lanyard !! Getting out of the park was slow which is normal for most races. Date of review: February 8, 2016
In short: Great course In full: Picked my number up on the day.no problem. The course was great.challenging hills and a very windy long finish line!! My only gripe was the countdown at the start. 5,4,3,2,1 GO. Nothing else at all. A minute to go call next time please!! Date of review: February 2, 2015
In short: undulating!!!!!!!!!!!!! In full: agree totally with previous enjoyed the race even the hills. and the girl in the wheelchair was awe inspiring! shame about marshalls!! and horrendous to get out of the car park. but lion medal was worth it!! Date of review: February 2, 2015
In short: The hills are alive... In full: Great fun. The hills are pretty taxing, but the downhill stretches are great! Good oragnisation generally, although it's obvious the marshalls are Rotarians rather then runners - very good at pointing, but not keen to applaud or encourage! My only gripe would be that it took 40 minutes to get out of the car park at the end... there was no traffic management provided by the organisers at all. Date of review: February 1, 2015
In short: Thoroughly enjoyable and challenging In full: Very good atmosphere. Very welcoming and friendly as this was my first ever race, hills were challenging but not too bad and the scenery was beautiful. Great goody bag at the end and plenty of water for everyone. And the medal is awesome :-) Can't wait to do it again next year! Date of review: March 10, 2014
In short: Great scenic cours with some killer hills! In full: This was my first time at the Longleat 10K and I really enjoyed the race.
A lot of noise has been generated about the decision by Longleat to open earlier and therefore charge spectators but that's not really the organisers fault and they have moved the date back next year to avoid - my family all entered the Fun Run so all worked out well.
The course was rather challenging, a killer hill after the first km, one later on and then the final km to the finish was slightly uphill - but where's the fun without a challenge? :-)
I did manage a PB but this is my first 10K race since a fairly intensive training regime leading up to the Bath Half.
Organisation was a little lacking in places but chip timing and a "OK" goody-bag and nice medal although not the famous lions head which everyone was speaking about (apparently it's back next year).
The only complaint I would make is that the Marshalls pretty much universally weren't interested in the race, there was no encouragement and they seemed a little sparse out on the course. I appreciate it was a Rotary club rather than runners but perhaps recruit some runners?
I'll definitely be back next year... Date of review: February 18, 2014
In short: Poor Organisation In full: IM only going to cover the things that stuck out as needing looking at:
1, started late due to people not getting to the start on time, marshalls should have been clearing the course so it could start on time, if people choose to be late that is there fault, letting runners get even colder is not acceptable.
2. Lack of marshalls on course, this has been mentioned previously, there weren't enough, especially in areas where there was traffic, and that includes Longleat vehicles driving like idiots!!
3, No toilets at start area,, its not that difficult is it????
4, Finish area was a shambles, people queing for bags and getting official times actaully spilling out onto the finish line, no marshalls at all in this area, I finished in under 40 minutes and stayed till the last runner and didn't see anyone asking runners to que in an oposite direction, taking them away from the finish...
5. Runners walking in the opposite direcion on the finish straight, against oncoming runners!! how dangerous and how stupid... I know the route had to be changed but did commen sense have a day off??
6. Hills,, not a gripe about the hills, but to those who keep bringing it up,, Longleat is not flat, if you dont like hills, dont enter it!!! if you want flat, go to a running track
7. Goody bag, I dont enter races for a goody bad, but it did make me smile when I looked and saw 2 sachets of Shampoo, but nowhere there to have a shower!
8. Medal, neither do I enter races to collect medals, although this one was described as a' lions Head' it more resembles a cartoon Cat (Garfield) doing a rather poor sprint. Not a great medal, not even a date on it considering it was a 10th aniversary!
9, A classic example of a 209 event where it could be really good, but let down again by poor organisation, (remember the wye valley half in 2011 where front runners went the wrong way beacuse of.... lack of marshalls....)
In short: Nice course, nice grounds, shoddy organisation In full: Weather held off and was a chilly but bright and dry race.
Organisationally, the event was a shambles. From the 3 course changes announced before the event to on the day shenanigans (More later) there seemed to be very little actual organisation. It was further hurt by Longleat's decision to open the park during the event which meant spectators either needed to pay the entry (At a 30% discount) or enter the fun run (£2 cheaper than the discounted rate)
Despite there being mention of timed start pens, I only saw the sub 40 one. The rest were hidden by swathes of people, not helped by the distinct lack of marshals trying to organise people properly. There was a PA system you could barely hear and no-one had a clue what was going on. I didn't hearIt ended up just a mass funnel of people of varying paces.
This was exacerbated by the Fun Run. There was supposed to be a 3k fun run taking place 5 minutes after the start of the main run. But people didn't seem to be able to tell what was going on (Lack of marshalling/decent PA contributed). So all the fun runners also started at the same time.
I spent the first 2k weaving in and out of people including, rather dangerously, children. In a fun run situation fair enough, but when I'm chasing a PB I'm not always looking down far enough and nearly rattled a few kids.
After that debacle though, I have to say the race was good. There were some KILLER hills. To say that marshals were sparse would be an understatement. If there was an emergency, it would take 2-3 minutes for a marshal to even get notified they were that far apart.
The problems return during the last kilometer. As runners were running up the finish straight, people who were already finished were walking down the same router, and I was having to weave around them too! Once again, no marshalling to keep runners and finishers separated.
The medal was good, the goody bag was shoddy. The tee shirt was good but paid extra for it.
The best part of the day was the attractions in Longleat which we did have free entry to (Except the safari park). The saving grace of the event.
I had fun, but have been to much better organised events and wouldn't do this one again with the current arrangements. Date of review: February 10, 2014