In short: Very well organised and supported. Freezing cold and wet,lots of fun, shame about the 1:30 pace maker In full: Thanks to all who contributed or supported. I have done lots of small half marathons but this was my first big scale event. Organisation was excellent. An absolutely miserable day weather-wise. Very little congestion on the road despite the 14000 runners and really well supported all the way round. Scenery is non existent but the supporter atmosphere more than made up. 2 minor criticisms; not enough space for people to get changed into dry clothes and the second was the pace maker. I was aiming for sub 1:30 and had the 1:30 pacemaker in my sights most of the way round. He ran very uneven splits and I overtook him with 1/2 mile to go and still ended up with 1:31. How does that work? Not the fault of the organisers though. Date of review: March 17, 2013
In short: Another great marathon training run from GVH In full: Relaxed, friendly, varied and interesting course... a great training run on a BITTERLY cold morning. Hot tea and cake at the end. Couldnt ask for more. Thanks very much GVH, see you at the 20. Date of review: February 25, 2013
In short: Fantastic marshalls, well organised race HQ In full: This is a very well organised race along quiet roads with only mild undulations - much less challenging than say the Hemel 20. Lots of marshals and good support in the village and plenty of water stations. Race HQ is excellent with good changing facilities, bag drop and cake/sandwiches stall. Received the best goodie bag I've ever had on any race. Only organisation hiccup was the parking; queued for 20 minutes to get in and the marshalls were a bit thin on the ground. Also much further away than the 10 minutes stated!
One negative (not the organisers fault); I was very disappointed to see just how much litter (mainly empty gel packets) were dropped by runners. One local in the village I saw was understandably disgusted but it wasn't just there; especially on the second lap there were empty packets everywhere. There's no need for it. Perhaps the race organisers can encourage/threaten but as runners we do need to be better behaved Date of review: February 17, 2013
In short: Brilliant race in appalling conditions In full: Freezing rain for the first hour, roads flooded ankle deep, the conditions were so bad it was great - the most enjoyable run I've had this year. A huge thank you to fantastic marshalls and organisers who remained cheerful throughout. This remains my favourite race in the calendar, looking forward to 2013 if my kit dries out in time! Date of review: November 4, 2012
In short: Gorgeous trail race through wonderful and varied scenery In full: A big thanks to the organisers. This is my second time on the half marathon course. A very very friendly bunch of people at race HQ. (race HQ is excellent by the way) Maybe because it is off road, largely unmarked and definitely not suitable for a PB, my fellow runners were also extremely friendly and I chatted to more people on the course than I ever have at any race before. No problems with getting lost on route thanks to the course being uploaded on my Garmin
The downs themselves are of course beautiful but it was the range of terrain and scenery that made it very special.
It was hard as nails today due to the 25C+ temperature. Only potential improvement would be more water stations... only 2 on a half marathon course in this heat was an issue, though to be fair it was clear on pre-race instructions that this was the case so I should have brought more liquid with me.
A great race, thank you! Date of review: September 9, 2012
In short: Thanks for another super half marathon In full: As ever, this is a fantastic race. Glorious scenery, two very tough hills at mile 8 and 11 and excellent organisation. The race I always look forward to each year, thank you Marlow Striders and all marshalls and helpers Date of review: November 6, 2011
In short: Incredibly well organised with great support In full: Surprised by how big this race was. Everything was immaculately organised and lots of marshalls making safe what would otherwise have been a tricky route. Lots of support out on the course and at the finish and the most generous goodie bag I've ever had anywhere. Thank you to Handy Cross Runners and Grant and Stone! Date of review: July 17, 2011
In short: Well done again, well organised and supported as always In full: Much more expensive this year, but as its now being run by a charity and the proceeds go to them I didn't mind paying the extra. This is my local race; the first 5k is very hilly through beautiful Chilterns woodland, the second 5k is flat through Prestwood village. Parking is easy, the new "vest chips" worked well and all in all very pleasant. Date of review: May 16, 2011
In short: Really well organised, great route, thank you! In full: Course is actually 20.2 miles with a rather steep hill at mile 15 so excellent marathon training. Great marshalling and nice warm informal feel to event. Staggered start a good idea but perhaps one improvement might be to call people to start line explicitly in speed order... I spend the first 6km trying to get past people who were much slower.
It was a great event, thanks to all who helped organise it, Date of review: March 29, 2011
In short: Great organisation and a pleasant course - excellent pre Marathon run In full: Very well organised (marshalls and signposting everywhere) and in location with plenty of parking. Some parts of course very nice. The hill at mile 11 was a bit of a killer. Well done and thank you Date of review: March 26, 2011