In short: Pity about the mile markers In full: I enjoyed the route, but can see there were issues with motorists and residents not liking the road closures on the housing estate. I think there is something for everyone here - a race track start, lovely rural section in Luton Hoo, good urban stretches on which to run and a central finish area. It is a pity about the mile markers which the organisers have said was down to human error. That's a pity as I clocked a decent half marathon time, best of the year for me. But it won't put me off returning as they will get this right next, time. I sincerely hope there will be a next time! Date of review: November 9, 2014
In short: Better 2nd year but still needs a bit of work In full: This is my home race and this year was so much better than last year. The course was so much nicer. Last year felt like a rollercoaster of undulation and hills. This year felt like a breeze compared to it. Weather was better too. Apart from the unfortunate error of the mileage I can't really fault the race. There were a lot runners of all abilities in the race so I don't think anyone was running without anyone in sight apart from the leader who was 6 minutes ahead of the closest runner. HQ was a bit small but had to be held there to make the course better Date of review: November 2, 2014
In short: Loved my hometown race In full: I was injured last year so couldn't take part in the inaugural running of this race, so I was determined to do it this year. Overall, I thought it was a fab event (and, as I'm from Luton, I'm trying not to be too biased!).
The route did unfortunately come out about 0.3 miles short - the organisers stated afterwards this was down to human error and the turn in Luton Hoo at 3/4 miles should have been a bit further along the estate road. A bit of a shame (especially as I was on for a massive PB), but I s'pose mistakes can and do happen, and one would assume this will be easily rectified next time.
That aside, I thought it was a great course. A cool start round the Stockwood Park athletics track, a bit of scenery heading into Luton Hoo, and then the rest urban - before finishing in front of the town hall in the town centre. Seen a few comments on social media saying they found the course quite hilly - but I disagree. There were a couple of short inclines (the last one around one mile from the end tests tired legs!), but that course was about as flat as you're going to get in Luton - and misses out all the town's major hills.
One big plus was running on traffic-free roads. Unfortunately, though, some disgruntled locals spent more time whinging in the local press that they couldn't go for a Sunday morning drive than they did getting out of their homes to support the runners.
The support from those who did line the route (and the marshals) was really good, though.
New races do take some time to establish and it's evident there's been a few teething problems both last year and this. But I would say there's huge potential for this event to grow and grow. Date of review: October 31, 2014
In short: Good intentions In full: Being from Luton originally I think it is really important to support a run in your home town and also support the intentions of the organisers.
The route included Stockwood Park, Luton Hoo and Wardown Park, but being a town the route will ultimately always be urban in nature.
It was a shame that the distance was short, but the organisers made a good attempt to rectify this during the race, by adding the loop at the end.
I think given the number of participants, trying to get the support of locals for road closures is going to be a challenge. From about 8 miles, most runners were on the pavement and as the numbers peter out, I can see why locals were getting frustrated. But the event is only in its second year and if you take Reading Half which now attracts 16,000 runners, the case for road closures changes.
I wasnt sure why we were taken out of Wardown Park onto New Bedford Road, when Old Bedford Road had been closed for the event. Perhaps a loop back through the park to join Old Bedford Road would be better.
The pre-race information was excellent. Although the Race HQ was a bit tight for space, it was sufficient for the numbers taking part. No matter what the size of the event is, there are never enough toilets. Finishing in the town centre was great. There were plenty of marshalls, although they could have been a bit more supportive. Overall, I am pleased to have taken part in this event. Well done Luton. Date of review: October 29, 2014
In short: Overall a Great Race with lots of potential. In full: First time running this race and really enjoyed it. Yes there was a slight error in the mile markers but I am sure this will be resolved for next year and I hope that it will go ahead again. Great start at the athletics track and enough support around the course to keep you going. Will definitely return...Well done Luton! Date of review: October 28, 2014
In short: Big improvements on next year. Issue with turn needs sorting In full: Good mix race with Luton Hoo scenery and some through town centre. Radically altered course from last year improved the road closures needed. I didn't see irate drivers this year, unlike last year, but there are some idiots around. Track start is nice and you have half a mile on an eight lane track. However the HQ room is small and toilets probably not enough for this. The short turn up the Hoo was a problem, the map on the website didn't show the exact point so didn't know if it was right or wrong until ran 4th mile in 2.5 mins. Basics of race are right though. Date of review: October 27, 2014
In short: OK but could have been so much better In full: Friendly enough marshals but I felt for them having to deal with irate motorists. Confusion over the course and so very obviously short between 3-4 (even without a Garmin!). Bit of confusion over where the buses were at the end. Plenty of water stops though.... Not one I would do again though Date of review: October 27, 2014
In short: As race goes past my house had to run this race. Was pleasantly surprised with the organisation and never noticed any glitches. In short, course was fairly quick and marshals and spectators very encouraging. Well done luton Date of review: October 26, 2014
In short: Really well organised, and locals very supportive. In full: There had clearly been a lot of effort put into organising this, with a carefully thought out traffic free route, and loads of marshalls. The locals really got into the spirit of it, with plenty of them out cheering all the runners on.
One small gripe is that the start was advertised as being a fifteen minute walk from the railway station: I can't walk two miles in fifteen minutes, and would have driven had I realised beforehand. But that's minor, it was a great atmosphere and a really enjoyable event. Date of review: October 26, 2014