In short: Professionally run race in a great location In full: My 7th Marathon and found so a very well organised race on budget. Very well marshalled / loads of water stations and a very good route. Felt that an energy drink / gel would have helped towards the later stages of the race and would debate how well the Marathon / half marathon works having both races set off at the same time. A bit more in the good bag would have been appreciated but nothing should be taken away really from this great run. If it was a local race then I would be eager to do it again. Date of review: May 6, 2013
In short: Well organized scenic race with loads and loads of water! In full: I really enjoyed this race. Scenic - you get a decent look around the old and scenic part of Stratford, some very attractive villages, some great views of the countryside and a riverside finish. Although the marathon is billed as two laps it is more two loops than two laps as the second loop only overlaps with the first one for maybe 7 – 8 miles in total. There is one notable hill on each lap but it comes earlier on than it could do, at 18 mile point on second loop i.e. before things start getting surreal. Lots of support in the villages from the locals, loads and loads of cheery marshalls, roads were either empty of traffic or had enough space coned off to have space to run without worrying about cars, and water everywhere! Seemed like a drinks station every 2 miles or less, all with easily squeezed 330ml bottles – not a cup in sight – perfect! Only slight niggle on the route was a couple of sharp switchbacks in the last couple of miles which interrupt the rhythm a bit. Medal and banana at the end, no goody bag or T shirt - you could buy a T shirts which, given that the aim of the event is to support local charities and the entry fee is relatively low, I guess is understandable. Thanks Stratford and everyone involved in putting the event on for a memorable day. Date of review: May 3, 2013
In short: Great experience, well organized run through beautiful scenery In full: Have done this several times now, and it never fails to impress. Well organized, friendly stewarding and hugely supportive crowds, particularly at the beginning and end. If you have never done a marathon before, this is as good a one as any to start.
Only gripe would be the cost, which is a tad high given no T shirt or goody bag afterwards, but I understand most of the proceeds go to charity , so hey ho.
Many thanks organizers, see you next year Date of review: May 1, 2013
In short: Brilliant to be able to change mind on distance halfway if needed. In full: At halfway I decided I was unexpectedly OK to carry on for full marathon even though I said Never Again, 9 years ago. I assume the parking costs were part of the deal with the council, but I was surprised to see parking officials actually checking cars on this happy fundraising day. My one surprise was no T-shirt; most races give out an awful one I don't want, but I really wanted a souvenir of this marathon included afterwards. Runners and marshalls all very friendly and I hope to return one day if I eventually recover!! Date of review: May 1, 2013
In short: A great introduction to marathons In full: Have run plenty before but this was my first marathon and it could not have gone any better. The organisation was great, plenty of water and sponge points, superb support and a really nice course. The hills could have been a lot worse, and having cycled in the area before the route defintitely avoided some nasty ones! I was only going to do a marathon once just to say 'I did it', but I shall be back next year. Date of review: April 30, 2013
In short: A friendly, scenic, hilly marathon with a great atmosphere In full: I really love this marathon. This was my ninth full marathon and second time at Stratford. It is described as 'undulating' which is euphemistic, but what doesnt kill you makes you stronger.. The support from the marshalls was second to none and the local support through the villages was really heartwarming. I'd thoroughly recommend to those thinking of giving this one a try, or stepping up from the half to full event. If I had one gripe it would be about parking costs, but I guess that is out of the remit of the marathon organisers. Well done to all those involved, long may it continue! Date of review: April 29, 2013
In short: Beautiful run in the lovely Warwickshire countryside In full: I found this to be a really well organised event. There were what felt like hundreds of stewards around, plenty of drinks stations and some nice touches such as sponges. I certainly felt well looked after.
Although the roads are still open to traffic, I didn't find this an issue, although I can see towards the end where you're running along a narrow lane at the edge of a main road, it could get interesting.
Overall, a lovely race, beautiful scenery, a great way to spend a Sunday morning.