Wicksteed Recovery Run Half-Marathon

Anyone else?

121 to 140 of 145 messages
03/01/2011 at 21:24

Phil, no I didn't contact him directly. I'd said it didn't look good to me, and how long a discussion can you have about something as subjective as that?

Cinders, in 2010 there was a 10k held in both Summer and Autumn. Although I do believe this was the first half there. Like I said, being local it'd be brilliant if the races were up to scratch, but the reports from this one, and other comments I've heard, suggest they're not.

03/01/2011 at 21:27

Interesting you should notice that Mike - I was very suspicious too, especially when I cant find him on the results pages!!!!

I was told that a guy doing the half ran the first lap, and when in the park second time round, stopped by his wife/girlfriend, handed his number to the marshall, and buggered off saying something like "sod this for a laugh"!! I know this to be true, as she was stood chatting to my friend at the time it happened!!

03/01/2011 at 21:31

I did this run on Saturday and it was my first half marathon since Silverstone in March 2009.

 I was pleased with my time (2hrs 35) finishing a second behind Ickle Jim and pleased to complete the distance on what was a tough course for someone getting back in the 13.1 mile distance.

 With regards to the organisation, I was very disappointed with the medal as I thought this was going to be engraved 1/1/11 11:11 etc, but it wasn't. With regards to the directions etc., it was hard not knowing which way to go and simply not worth the money.

Wicksteed Park also missed a trick as I had told my friends and family that the cafe would be open, but there was nothing and the biscuits were a little stale in the tin at the end, but overall, I enjoyed it.

Feeling it a bit today, but back to the gym tomorrow to prepare for Silverstone.

Ickle Jim - thank you for pacing me at times. I was struggling at times, but you helped get me through and I finished a second behind you. Just didn't have the legs to catch you!!!

 Mike - thanks for your shout of "Keep going, not far" on the final bend - much appreciated!

 Would be interested to see the response from UM (if any), but I was warned this wouldn't be particularly well organised.

03/01/2011 at 21:32

Oh Dear I see the ranting and raving still goes on...

Would be interested to know what the organisers have to say.

I too saw superwoman and fairy - it cheared me up and made me continue. Thank you - shame there weren't more in fancy dress.

Well done to the 5 and 10km runners who had to deal with steep hills and others overtaking.

03/01/2011 at 21:39
I saw the fancy dress runners as well - well done! good effort!
03/01/2011 at 22:28
cheers for your support and pacing too, Simon
03/01/2011 at 23:46

Oooh just read all your comments above.

Guess I must have been at a different Wicksteed Park HM event or was I the only one sober??? Or not sober???

Saw Superwoman and Fairy - you both looked fab and I know you were much admired by all your fellow runners.

The HM event was absolutely BRILL! I thoroughly enjoyed it but had to go slow as I mistakenly wore trail shoes instead of ordinary  running shoes and came in 4th from bottom - well that's my excuse!

The event was brilliant for the reasons below

- the event with its loops allowed runners doing different distances and at all level of fitness to run together. Stronger / quicker runners had the opportunity to encourage slower pace runners in the HM and 10k. I love that comradarie amongst runners. So thank you all for overtaking me many times and encouraging me throughout the run. Much appreciated.

- it's a local HM on NYD - yaye! A great way to start the year. Last year I went all the way to Preston for the Central Lancashire HM in January and it was cancelled due to the snow. Not good for my goal to complete a HM race every month. The few other HMs that exist in January (not local) gets booked up so far in advance, suffered the same fate last year so I am just very pleased about this local HM. I have  accomplish my personal goal of a HM every month for the last 2 years. I know small beer to some of you experienced runners but thanks to UM its done and dusted now for the first month of this year.

- its a timed and published HM. Got a time, Actioned my goal for this month!

- 11 am start time...so refreshing to have a HM that has a much later start time.

- wonderful friendly and encouraging marshals. Those at road junction handled the traffice so well. The weather was so miserable but you were all so wonderful and kept us going.

- almost free of traffic

- good facilities (toilets, car park) and it was easy to find. Yes, it was a shame that Wicksteed Park did not have the cafe opened.

- the medal was a nice memento especially if you are new to running and it's a decent one. I have got loads of tatty medals (still grateful for, and find highly amusing)  and the one from this event is well made with a comical design. Some of my tatty medals have been given to my 7 year old nephew after lots of begging, but this one sorry I'm keeping! 

- the central water station was brill. It meant you could get water as you finished a loop and also a little later just after the start of the new loop.

-  biscuits at the end was an unexpected nice treat, none of the ones I had were stale

So as you can see the HM did tick many boxes for me. Many years ago, I did do a local HM on NYD at Pitsford Resevoir organised by someone that worked for the Post Office I think.  That was fabulous. Its a great venue and is trail, flat - just 2 laps round the resevoir. Organisers any chance of going there?

Only 1 disppointment for me - my car was muddier than I was at the end of the event. Won't say where I parked!

Cheers from a very sober


04/01/2011 at 01:17

Now that I've got some pictures from the event, I am pleased to announce my sponsors and I managed to raise £405 (and still counting) for a young lad - Jay Brewer.

 Further details can be found on the website www.runforjay.co.uk

Still buzzing from the run!

04/01/2011 at 09:23
MK Lakeside - I don't drink actually. I race most weekend - I did four marathons and four Ultras in 2009 , I do a 10K, 10 mile or half most weekends.

You can put whatever spin you like on this - yes it was a half and thats about it. I cracked round it and thats that.

Lets look at it - parking charges on the gate, no mention of that . No proper race HQ - had there been more than the 180 that turned it would have been total chaos. No bag storage - I was one of the few who got my bag put in the back of the BMW parked at the start. No start line. No clear finish line - I saw several run into the area and go *where now*

The course - lets be honest, 3 - 4 laps aren't a good idea for a half marathon are they? 2 laps is pushing it for a half , this course should have been left as a 10K - just because they *can* doesn't mean they *should*. No signs at all , no route markers , no **Caution runners** , I had to call out to frozen marshals *which way* - some had confusion even when they did ask. Not car /traffic free by any stretch of the imagination - couple of road junctions covered a couple not but there was a point on a bend where folk where changing from right to left side of the road , no marshals at all there throughout the race. I dodged cars on the course, on the carpark (as 10K people left) , no taping off the course in the park , I dodged pedestrians in big groups and one time as I got back to the race *hub* there was such a crowd I had to shout to them to get out of the way.

The water stops - the two little lads and their mother were spectators roped in on the day, the mother told me. They didn't know what to do and it wasn't their fault, people were milling about and once I had to push past finished runners to get a quarter cup.

The medal - well many seemed to think it was poor and didn't say if it was for 5/10K or half and not engraved. I don't collect them anyway - a goody bag would be better with an energy drink or bar.

The lack of facilities in the park given the awful weather was a big minus point - many bring along relatives , if they'd said NO facilities then they might have brought flasks etc. The toilets however were superb, if you could find them.

So there we have it - the thing is what was the £20 for? and who would give them money again? In the summer there are plenty of races - they only got me because no half was available but I could have run a much nicer 13mile training run and avoided the cost, I thought this might be a good half , it wasn't and a big disappointment given the cost.

Oh and one more point - by not having a race HQ where I could fill in late entry I didn't sign any kind of disclaimer, had I got injured then they could be liable. Just a point but a good one.
04/01/2011 at 09:44

Glad you enjoyed it MKLR, I too was also sober as I suspect most of the runners were!  Not sure how I'd run a half if not sober! 

04/01/2011 at 09:53
BTW.  Lloyd has posted his own review of his race and commented also.
04/01/2011 at 09:58

Does anyone know when the photographs are available ?

 I've been on the Welcome Photography website a few times and I'm itching to see how knackered I look!

04/01/2011 at 13:05

I have read and re-read Lloyd's defence of the event and so far as I am concerned it serves only to underline the contempt the organisation of the event showed the competitors.  I will try and keep this brief but:-

"There were two start lines .... and you were directed to where the finish line was".  No, there were no start and finish "lines" -  just vague "start over there" and "finish over there" directions (at a briefing that was frankly largely inaudible).  A number of competitors report saying "is this it then?".  So basically we're just dumb then are we?  Okay.

"Anyone not wishing to pay the £2 could quite easily have parked outside the park" - well no, not really.  If you didn't know the venue, the first you'll have known about the charge would have been on reaching the kiosk, by which point it would be very difficult to turn round, especially with other cars behind.  They DID advertise onsite parking as a facility - if this was chargeable, why couldn't they have said so - other races manage to make it clear when parking charges apply.

"I would have expected the vast majority to use their own cars for storage" - Again, not really okay, if they advertised bag storage.  Which they did, and then didn't appropriately provide it.  

"I would have been worried if runners had been passing "caution runners" signs" - REALLY?  This I simply do not accept.  You know where I want a driver to exercise caution?  Where I'm running! 

"Water was provided at the start/finish line in cups" - but the start and finish "lines" weren't in the same place.  This is deliberately conflating a water station with post-race drinks.  The fact that the former existed and the latter didn't led to complaints that finishers were impeding competitors on the course.

I would have felt better about the whole situation if a little humility could have been shown and failings accepted, rather than the shifting of blame onto runners.  Unfortunately the spectacularly selective nature of the illustrative remarks from a tiny minority of satisfied runners says it all really.

Oh I could go on, but I will spare you. 

04/01/2011 at 13:46

Oh, and if you want to read reviews of events from the same organisers you will find them here:






While none are in the same league as the pasting Saturday's event is getting, you may find a certain familiarity in the reports of poor organisation, unclear start/finish lines, inadequate water, poor value for money, surprise parking charges and tatty medals.  Just sayin'. 

04/01/2011 at 14:39
Well I did not need see the mile/ kilometre markers, though I suppose a bit difficult when trying to follow other runners as have never run a race where everyone was unclear about the route....
04/01/2011 at 16:46

Running sober or not sober? Neither do I drinK MW - well not really! It was just my small attempt to lighten up things a bit. Something to do with it being NYD, GSOH and

But I must just mention as this will be my last missive, it's definitely true what they say about the 2nd glass of champers - once the bottle has been opened it must be consumed, hence the 3rd.... hiccup and 4th....

UM if you can organise a NYD HM at Pitsford Resevoir 2012 you would be most welcome to celebrate with me a sip  or glass of champers post run.



04/01/2011 at 19:49

Firstly, thank you Lloyd for coming out and trying to address the feelings of some of us who ran and were unhappy with the race - it would have been very easy to hide away now that the race has finished.

I wont repeat everything Kaybee has said, I tend to agree with what she has posted.

Can I please begin by apologising for not seeing the Red Cross van in the park - I genuinely didnt see it, but a friend with me has confirmed she saw it there. As it was raining and I am very short sighted, I took my glasses off!  would have been very surprised had there not been - so I apologise for this.

Parking outside the park isnt permitted - and with very little street parking available nearby (I live here!) not sure where 600 people would have parked if all places had been sold. Then again, £2 is a very fair price, though this could/should have been advised.

I have just run the route again, and the stretch of road heading back towards the main road before turning for the park is 0.9 miles long, which has to be crossed - No warning signs along here is difficult to understand, especially as I now noticed the 'official' crossing point was at the very end. Most runners crossed well before this, surely either a) a safety briefing for this part of the course is in order or b) a proper manned crossing well before to ensure the safety of all the runners?

Water at the finish - its not acceptable to suggest we should take it from a working drink station in the middle of the course! To get to it would have meant crossing the path of those still running - something I find incredibly annoying to have done to me, and I would NEVER knowingly do to another runner!

May I suggest that a number of these issues could have been addresses in the race pack that was sent out - I am sure most of these decisions were made long before the day? i.e. location of first aid/crossing points/safety instructions/water stations/toilets/distance markers etc.

For the record - I did ask Lloyd ref charity donation made from the entry fee - I can only assume a lack of response means that NO donation has been made (I would have shouted very loudly about this if they had given the response).

04/01/2011 at 20:43

One final point -

Lloyd posted:

 ""......Recruit marshals who are willing to give up not only a significant bank holiday but who refrain from going out partying the night before in order to allow others to run and then let them read the negative and in many cases inaccurate feedback being given and then consider why they bother."

I, like a good many others here have posted positively about the contribution these guys make, and understand how important they are to the running of ANY race.

I just feel that the comment made was out of context, and certainly not reflective of the points I/others were making.


Mike - Good luck inTelford on sunday - sure we will cross paths somewhere across the country.

Simon - Well done on the fundraising - a great effort.

04/01/2011 at 21:04

For all those doubting my existence, I am actually a real person who did do the run on Saturday .Why I have only commented on one run is because my original account was hacked by some idiot and password changed. To protect my accounts in the future I have made a screen name that is different from my own .I have however written many comments on my old account for runs such as Mercedes world run and a run at Silverstone.

Runners world actually state in their code of conduct to not "slam newbies for being odd " and now you all know why my account looked odd

04/01/2011 at 21:12

Where do I find Lloyds comment on his race??

Noone was complaining about the marshalls!!

I did look on wickstead website in advance and found it was reduced rate parking on new years day of £2. ie. nothing to do with UM negociating a 50% reduction in parking fees.

How to rectify - take on board the comments people have made and address them

- reissue medal with 1.1.11 engraved on it?

- send out an appology

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