Spring/Autumn Marathons with PB Pontial in South of England

12 messages
19/12/2012 at 11:31

Hi, All

After 4 London Marathons, looking for a flat (ish) course in order to try achieve my ambition of a sub 4hr (current PB is 4:13:25). Don't fancy Brighton as I've had enough of large, busy events, and I think I'd find the course a tad dull (all along the seafront and then back again!). Really interested in the New Forest Marathon but opinions seem divided as to its PB potential. Anyone with any opinions on this or any other races? Ideally looking for Autumn/Winter/Spring events as I hate running in the heat.

Thanks in advance.

19/12/2012 at 11:50

Milton Keynes could be an option for you as it is pretty flat.

19/12/2012 at 13:56

Autumn - Abingdon Marathon - very flat and seen as a PB course by many.

seren nos    pirate
19/12/2012 at 13:59

definitely Abingdon.............but it fills up quickly when it opens......

or if you broaden the defintion of South.Llanelli in South wales in april is flat and fast

19/12/2012 at 14:05

Thanks, Guys . . . . going to check out the websites of these races.


19/12/2012 at 16:02

theres the new Bournemouth one in October

19/12/2012 at 16:22
Max's Mum wrote (see)

theres the new Bournemouth one in October


I like their incentives for faster runners, but I'd always be wary of signing up for an inaugural event (unless it was very local, maybe.)  Will be interested to read the reports to see how this one goes next year.

19/12/2012 at 16:27

Definately Abingdon in October, usually opens 1 Feb and fills up ealier each year. About 1000 max and very well organised.

19/12/2012 at 16:44

I'd say Abingdon - never done it myself but know plenty who have who got a PB.  Would agree inaugeral races are not always a good idea, and ones along sea fronts are very weather dependent.

I did the New Forest Marathon twice in my early years of long-distance running, is a beautiful course and great if you don't mind running stretches on your own ... BUT it does have some hills, and they are mainly in the latter section; plus that weekend is traditionally quite hot weather-wise, and there are long stretches on open road.  Personally I like a few hills to break it up for the the legs - use different muscles etc, but that's just me.

We have a VERY flat marathon up here (but it involves a flight from the South of England!), the Moray Marathon has provided many a PB for those local enough to complete it ... and it's in September.

Edited: 19/12/2012 at 16:45
19/12/2012 at 18:33

Thanks to all for your replies.

Had a look at Abingdon and Llanelli but discovered they're two-lappers, and I don't really like multi-lap races (fussy git aren't I? ).

MK looks good, but straying into May so might be a bit warm? Moray sounds good but probably a tad too far for me to travel. 

Still interested in doing New Forest as a few hills would be ok and I could cross my fingers that the weather might be pants (as it was this year apparently), but may also now consider travelling a bit further afield and doing Chester (looks good).

Has anyone out there got a PB at New Forest (having done other marathons e.g. London)?

19/12/2012 at 19:20

Abingdon really isn't bad as a two lapper.

For New Forest, have a delve through the results on PO10 :


 e.g. the winner in 2012 ran 2:37:25, compared to an April PB marathon of 2:28:37. All PB's on PO10 for the top 100 runners were for first time runners of marathon distance (at least for marathons on PO10).

Comnparing with London is difficult due to potential congestion depending on where you start

19/12/2012 at 21:17

I'd say definitely difficult to compare. I ran London as my first ever ever marathon and did something like 4.25 I think, a 1.5 years later I did New Forest on not the best training and did 4.09 and then did it again the following year - following a proper training schedule but was going down with a cold on the day and really struggled BUT did 4.01 ...  Was going to suggest Shakespeare Marathon as another one - but it's Spring and two laps ... but that's where I finally got a decent PB.  Appreciate Moray a long way from anywhere!!! (although Inverness airport only 25 mins away)

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