I didn't get into London (again!) so am looking for another marathon in the north at a similar time. I found the Marathon of the North in Sunderland but there are no reviews on this website and I just wondered if anyone ran it last year and could recommend it? Or another marathon? I ran Manchester last year but would like a change and hopefully better weather! Thank you!
I ran this last year. One of approximately 1,500 runners, although as they run a 10k(?) race on the same morning, there was quite a crowd at the start.
Starts and finishes at Sunderland's Stadium of Light, so facilities are excellent. Steve Cram is the Race Director so he should know a thing or too about racing!
The course is broadly three out and back loops (although not covering the same roads, if that makes sense) so it's a good one for spectators to see runners a few times. (My 'team' managed six sightings). It is relatively flat, with a few undulations. taking in some of the city centre, some of the seafront and through two of the parks (names escapes me).
From memory most, if not all of the course is closed to traffic, although padestrians did wonder along some of the footpaths near the end but nothing to bothersome.
Nice technical t-shirt, medal and free massage at the finish.
Easy to travel to on the Metro as there are stops five minutes walk from the start and finish.
I'd definitely do this one again if it wasn't for the fact I lived in Essex and it was a bit of a trek (I too had it as a back up for London)
hope this helps - happy to answer any other questions!
thank you so much Bertie for taking the time to tell me so much about the race. Sounds perfect for me as I like support but not repeating the same roads will have a think and will probably enter. You doing London?
Yes, managed to get my GFA time at this year's Marathon of the North event!
It's definitely a PB course as it's fairly flat and not very crowded. If it was windy I'd imagine you'd suffer a bit along the coastal bits, but this year the conditins were near perfect!
Good luck if you do decide to run!
I ran it last year, but I have very little to compare it to other than the Great North Run as it was my first marathon. As said earlier there are the toilet facitlities of a football stadium that holds 48,000 people available to the 10k and marathon runners so that wasn't an issue. The course did have a slight feel of them struggling to squeeze 26 miles out of Sunderland but I quite liked seeing the runners ahead of me coming towards me on some of the loops and it was good being one of those runners looking at people about to start the loop when you were nearing the end. Think this happened about 4/5 times over the course.
Can't recall seeing any free massages but everyone was given free bananas at the end
I was thinking of doing it again if I didn't get in to the London Marathon. As it happens I got a place so I am planning on running the 10k instead. 2 marathons in a week sounds like too much to me. Out of interest there will be people on here who have done marathons 2 weekends running. How was it?
2 marathons in consecutive weekends is fine if you are not racing them!
Ran 4 in 4 days over last weekend and have 2 next weekend.
I am also a London reject (again!) and thinking about entering this race instead.
now toying between this race and the Brathay Windermere..... can't decide between the two
Hi, I've just entered this race for my first time marathon (having been knocked back for London). Friends of mine who ran it last year gave it a thumbs up. Well organised, 'big race' feel without being a crowded course, good transport links and fairly flat. Also for the NE of England there aren't many other options for the distance.
Ran the Steve Cram organised Kielder 10k at the weekend and was really impressed. The entry fee was at the higher end of the spectrum, but excellent event, well organised with good support. Hopefully the Marathon of the North will be similar. However as another poster mentioned could get windy where the course heads along the seafront.
I used a code for £2 off the online fee (until the end of October '12), enter SHHH2012 at registration.
I've done quite a few marathons and did this last year 2 weeks after London. Id not recovered so struggled but I was really impressed and may do it again next year. Would definately recommend this one.
Great start and finish at the stadium. Really easy access and parking. Although a fairly small field there was good support and the loops of the course helped with this as you got chatting to the same supporters that you'd seen already. Varied and quite scenic course including parks and a coastal section. Not flat but certainly not hilly enough to cause any trouble. Brill t-shirt and o.k medal. Massages at the end.
Like lily i'm undecided between this and Windermere. Perhaps see how Preston goes next week first though!
Going to enter! Thanks for all the helpful comments. Will leave Windermere till next year maybe. It falls when my daughter is doing gcses so not a good date this year. I do know that Manchester is also on 28th April too but I want to try a different marathon.
Hi. Just seen this. I did Marathon of the North this year and thought it was excellent. A bit of a wiggly course, but that has it's pluses as others have pointed out. Although wiggliness did mean some guy running broadly around the same time as me kept cutting huge corners off. I mean like I would just class as proper cheating. He must have thought the race was being run under fell running rules.
Facilities are excellent at the stadium, not having to que for the toilet was just unreal. I thought all the marshalls and helpers were great. And Crammy is a legend so you have to do his race just for that reason!
I'm in Brighton this time, but will be back to this. You just reminded me how good it was.
feeling very tired and flat after a great Tatton Half marathon on Sunday. Won't run for about a week but wondered if anyone had any advice on how to maintain my running before starting my marathon training in January? I ran a pb of 2hrs 21mins and hope to run the marathon in about 5hours. Thank you!
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