In short: Great race In full: Just love this race, always a fantastic if painful afternoon. Great value, organisation like clockwork as usual and great support from the marshalls and locals all the way around. The main uphill section is just relentless and though just 2km, really makes or breaks your efforts. Something about reaching the top though that seems to give you loads in the legs for the mad descent. Very addictive, will be back! Date of review: September 2, 2010
In short: One of the highlights of the running year and becoming a classic In full: First run in 1979 this race with a sell-out on the day has joined the likes of the Merthyr Mawr Christmas Pudding 10K as one of those that people in the know just don't miss. Greg gets it spot on every year. Its hilarious that utterly mundane 20+ quid road 10Ks will get ranked better than this race by people who don't know what they are talking about. Date of review: September 1, 2010
In short: Hard work up, worth it on the way back down In full: I'd done the Offa's' Orror but this was playing a different game entirely. When you hit the steepest slopes you've ever run on inside the first half mile and it just keeps getting steeper you know you're in trouble. I've never seen so many club runners walking so early in a race but it was hard not to.
You run and you walk and you climb your way to the water station and then you find out that the hard bit is still to come. You get over the steepest section and you try to work out if your legs are even going to work on command as you crest the top but before you know it you're flying down as fast as you dare. I went past several on the way down and if you're willing to take a risk you can really get some speed up and the adrenaline rush you get on some sections is unlike anything I've felt in a race before.
Before you know it you get to the bottom and wish you'd paid attention to the fact you have to lap the field to finish.
PS I missed out on cake. Gutted. Date of review: August 31, 2010
In short: Onwards and upwards, and upwards, and upwards. In full: Machen 10 number 6 for me, and it never gets any easier. The race is gruelling, yet glorious. With such a relatively small team, Greg consistently produces a wonderfully organised event, great value for money, warm and welcoming atmosphere, and of course that hill. All credit to everyone involved, organisers, marshalls, first aiders, even the runners. Date of review: August 31, 2010
In short: Wonderful weather, challenging climb and hell for leather descent In full: Brilliant fell race; this year the weather was warm and sunny. Despite recent rains the underfoot conditions were pretty much perfect, as was the organisation and excellent marshalling. One tough climb over the first 3.7 miles or so but a fantastic descent to the end! Date of review: August 30, 2010
In short: Awesome fell run using one of the steepest routes up Mynydd Machen. In full: My local mountain - I live on the other side in the Sirhowy Valley - and one I run and ride on very frequently, but that doesn't stop me relishing this run. The climb up is steep but not treacherous with a couple of stiles... once you crest what you think is a hard climb wait for the last third of a mile :)
Once past the trig point it's all downhill through the pine forestry, affectionately known as the 'Shag Pile Run' due to the liberal coating of pine needles on the forest floor. Dodgy in the wet and difficult to put the brakes on without suitable off road shoes - I was all over the place in 2009 and lost loads of time and places on the descent :( Back in 2010 with some Inov 8 fell shoes so hoping for a better run down :)
A top run, well organised with a local friendly atmosphere and definitely - definitely - worth doing. You won't regret it. Date of review: July 24, 2010
In short: What a nightmare, but what a challenge! In full: Never done such a tough race - a very steep 3 mile climb. Walked more than ran up but the journey down more than makes up for it. Loved the tea and cake, well organised- many thanks. Date of review: September 6, 2009
In short: One of the highlights of the running year In full: We are so fortunate in this area to have so many outstanding hill/fell races and Machen just edges out Pentyrch, Sirhowy 10 and Tintern Trot because its just that much more spicy and risky downhill which of course is the whole fun of it in our modern, risk-averse world :-) Date of review: September 5, 2009
In short: big,big,climb!!!!!!!!!!!!! In full: first time doing this run,thought i would give it a go as i only live 2 miles away,i am used to running up hills and mountains,but never one like that before!!all in all a fantastic race,well organised and marshalled from beginning to end,a bargain for the price,really nice t shirt too,i normally give other event t shirts away but i feel i deserved this one!!!!!!!! Date of review: September 1, 2009
In short: Great event In full: My local August off-roader and still as good as ever. Greg and co have hit on a winning formula here and have stuck with it (take note corporate sponsored event types!). A good mix of club runners and general mud enthusiasts, organisation and marshalling brilliant, a very wearable t-shirt as usual and refreshments afterwards. Can't really fault anything apart from the fact the uphill is definitely getting steeper (or I'm getting older). As for the race itself, it's a very long slog to the top and there's a lot more up than down, but the downhill section is fantastic, and much more hairy this year in the muddy conditions. Was hoping for a pb over the course but missed out by a couple of minutes. Will definitely be back! Date of review: September 1, 2009