In short: Brilliant event marred only by poor signage In full: This was a really friendly race with a good mix of fun and club runners. I did the 25k run (there were 15K and 42K events too, as well as walking and cycling events). The route is undulating through a mixture of woodland trails, fields, stony tracks and on the roadside and the scenery was beautiful, even with the rainy weather we had on the day.
The only downside was the poor signage particularly in the second half of the race. Each event should have had a colour coded sticker on each arrow sign so you knew when that sign related to you, but these were missing on a lot of signs leaving you wondering if you should ignore the sign to turn off, or assume the sticker had fallen off and follow the sign anyway. There was one junction with an arrow saying 'walkers only' and the other saying '50k' (which was the cycle route distance) so runners had to guess which way to go. If the route maps for all events had been posted on the website in advance we would at least have known where runners/walkers/cyclists shared the same route.
It would also have been useful to have marshalls at certain points along the route rather than just at the checkpoints which were 3-4 miles apart. I often couldn't see any other runners, and given I'd started to lose confidence in the signs, often wondered if I had gone off course. It became quite frustrating having to stop to check the map so often.
Now that I know the route I would do this event again, but really hope the organisers sort out the signage problem which was causing a lot of frustration amongst runners on the day. Date of review: July 9, 2012
In short: Could be so much better In full: I did the 42km or marathon if you like. I'm just gonna reiterate what has already been said by many really and that is to say that this race has all the makings of a very special race or challenge as the man at the start said. But it was ominous from the start when we all and I mean all went off in the wrong direction. There needed to be a marshal directing at least at this point as the elite guys even got it wrong and everyone else was following them. The signage was very bad and in places it was hard to know if you was going in the right direction as it was easy to find yourself completely alone and then you may come to another arrow almost hidden in the foliage, very bad. As another mentioned this race is made for walkers and there needs to be a conscientious effort to try and see this event from a runners point of view. The organisers either need to make the signs clearer or give a better road book so we all know where we stand. I too got lost a couple of times, not badly but lost all the same so don't know how many more miles I may have done. I was on for a good time till this happened too. The water stations needed to be better than just water and hard sweets and also I thought the distance between checkpoint 2 and 3 was way too far apart. Its also been mentioned that this event probably has too many other events going on at the same time at different distances and this was very obvious at times as some walkers were going one way and people on mountain bikes going the other and everyone crossing each others paths and this caused confusion too.
Apart from all this though it was one of most beautiful events I have done for scenery and a fantastic experience to be part of as I have done many runs and races through the South Downs and it always amazes me how much there still is to be found.
I would like to come back to do this again next year but hope the organisers take note from some of the ramblings here and surprise us all. Date of review: July 16, 2011
In short: Lovely scenery, spoilt by poor organisation - no route maps on website beforehand - and inadequate route marking In full: I ran this event a few years ago when it started in Chichester and followed a much simpler - albeit possibly shorter - route. This year most of the field went wrong within the first mile and I went so far off-route after checkpoint 3 that I visited checkpoint 2 twice and ended up doing about 30 miles! Therefore I recommend ideally a simpler route, more markers or written instructions - as on LDWA events. Although there were relatively few runners, I don't understand why the times were slower than the South Downs or Beachy Head that have tougher hills. Despite all this, I plan to be back next year and do it properly. Date of review: July 13, 2011
In short: 25k. Superb scenic hilly run. Poor route marking In full: Entered this online and received no further information until I enquired 3 days before race which was a bit poor. The event's website isn't the best either but did the job.
On the day, a very good race. Easy parking. Easy number and chip collection. Organised start. Beautiful scenery that beats the pants off road runs. At one point we ended up in a small village in between two hills and it was stunning.
This one definitely reminded me of the Salisbury 54321 but smaller. Multi-distance, walkers and runners (and bikes) over very beautiful public footpaths and private land. The 25k distance was perfect for my marathon training. The route marking needs to be much better. Around Goodwood I would have gone off course at least twice if a fellow runner (who must have run last year) guided me and others back on course. At one point by the racecourse where we ended back where we have been earlier, there were two identical markers pointing in opposite directions! Sure, you have a map but if the event does some marking, the map becomes fairly useless if you can't identify easily where you are on it! Nobody told me there were check-in points to be initialled. I found out because I stopped at the first water station (others didn't). This station was overrun and the one person on it really needed more help.
Aside from this, the actual run was superb. The course great. Other runners were friendly. The downhill in the last 2/3 miles was welcome and very fast.
If they get the course marking right on this (or more marshals or both), this could be an excellent event.
I will be back for the 42k next year. Date of review: July 13, 2011
In short: Lovely social run In full: Navigation is not one of my greatest skills and I was certainly tested!! However, the atmosphere was great and there was lots of support and help from fellow runners. I think I clocked 30 miles in the end after getting lost 5 times. Adds to the challenge. Reckon I should be more with it next year!! Friendly marshalls added a smile at the checkpoints Date of review: July 11, 2011
In short: A great Sunday run In full: Entered on line but until a couple of days before the race was not sure what time it started. Found the organisation web site difficult to understand. On race day there were no issues pre race. I didn't take the route map during the race - never occurred to me & the lady who gave me my number never recommended that I should. The route is very twisty, well signed for walkers but not for runners. Clearly the trail markings are set by walkers for walkers. Sorry but a running perspective is needed ie marshals required. The route is great & although it goes over the top of the Downs & back, it is not that too hilly & I ran the whole 25k route. The directions are difficult to understand at time, why not use different coloured signs once hitting half way rather than two arrows showing opposite directions at Goodwood when completing a loop! At the end just a cup of water & no food is poor & given the cost with no medal thrown in was poor. Why were runners charged much more than walkers? The field for the 25k was small. If the organisers want to big this event, it has to make improvements as stated above. The course route deserves it! Date of review: July 11, 2011
In short: What a shame it went wrong at the 25 / 42km marker...... In full: I will never ever ever ever ever ever ever do a multi distance race like this again. As this is the second time I have done something like this and both times been directed the wrong way. The organisers hearts were in the right place but they need organising in the key areas ie. where the 25km splits from the 42km marker. This challenge is okay for a fun runner but not for a serious runner. Date of review: July 11, 2011
In short: Great scenery, Good Value, Enjoyed almost all of it. In full: Absolutely stunning views of Goodwood racecourse made this race for me, you basically circle it on route. Such a shame the route was so poorly marked this really needs to be addressed as its not the first year its been critised for this reason. I ended up running 29 miles and stopped another bunch of runners from the same mistake all because of poorly positioned directions. Would I run the race again? Well the answer is definately Yes! but only because I know the course and its Glorious!!