In short: Its big, its smooth but its an event rather than a race In full: Well organised race that managed to get 50,000 in one place at one time ready for teh start without major problems - all the problems seem to be getting them away at end.
Course is largely soulless and uninspiring made better by the huge numbers of bands around course and the spectators. to be honest was expecting a few more spectators but might have been the rain putting them off.
Mildly undullating course with nothing too serious in terms of hills.
Think this has gone beyond a race to be honest and many people scores reflect this as an event or occasion, mass participation feel good etc. As a race there are better courses and better support.
Worth doing once for the occasion but doubt I will ever be back (even if I lived close) Date of review: September 20, 2010
In short: At least four points where runners went on wrong course - says it all In full: Pre race good organisation.Chip andnumber pick up smooth. Race has possibly outgrown HQ but just about OK. Bridge in first half mile a bit of a challenge.
Potentially a lovely race. Running down canal paths, great views, pleasant. So as a training run would be stunning.
Thank you to the marshalls there were BUT too few and course not well marked. Heard of 3-4 points where runners went wrong, personally added over a mile but heard of people cutting 2 miles off. Marshall at end had to ask how far you had run and send you round field if you hadnt run far enough. Just not good enough in my book
Medal was the saddest one I have seen and goody bag (tea bag and a few vouchers - seriously!) barely recovered by first 50 or so marathon runners getting a free beer.
Race could/should be fastscenic run but spoilt by confusing route and poor signage. Date of review: September 11, 2010
In short: Great local marathon, how club runs should be In full: Lots going for this race. Thanet put on a good race, having run the 20 before knew what to expect and wasn't disappointed.
Not chipped but in this size field I dont think it was necessary. Half and full together so first 13 miles is busier than second. First half is a bit up and down but nothing major, second is largely flat but lots of it on concrete.
Good support from water stations with gels and bottled water in second half not to mention jelly babies!
Medal and T shirt and good goody bag.
Well worth doing Date of review: September 6, 2010
In short: Flat run by the seaside In full: Generally a well organised race although start was delayed by traffic problemsthis year and and communications issues letting everybody know. Start was very narrow leading to bunching. Only two criticisms of a very good race.
Flat two lap route so you know what to expect. Plenty of water and sponges. Reasonable support. Wind and/or sun can be a problem but this year was about spot on.
Well worth doing and definitely PB potential if the weather is right
In short: Muddier than ever, rivers and pools of water..Everything that makes Benfleet a special racee In full: Wow - hard 15 miles. Real multi terrain with some sea wall (although muddy in places. Little bits of road. And lots of mud across Downs. Think this was the muddiest yet and if not in trail shoes then struggled to get up a few slopes
Lots of falls in the mud and very testing for time of year - more a cross country race than anything else this year but thats partly due to all the water caused by recent snow and rain
Great organisation, nice finishers T shirt, lots of water stations and great marshalls.
This race is not a PB one its about getting round and enjoying the cammeraderie of other runners struggling in testing condition.
In short: Good end to year - challenging course depending on wind direction but loops! In full: First a big well done to the marshalls - rarely have I seen so many marshalls at a race and they were universally friendly and supportive.
Organisation generally was very good. Good race HQ, plenty of announcements. Chips on morning seemed to go well.
Race? Its a three lap route along some of Norther Luton and surrounding roads (2-3 miles along A6 for example) which isnt exactly inspiring. No real hills but plenty of slopes nto challenge you particularly on third lap.
Key to this race is where the wind is blowing. Today it seemed to be in face for 90% of time and against you on big hills which made it difficult.
Not a huge amount of support around the course but runners fairly friendly.
Also a relay which seemed to work well with the three lap nature of the race.
Nice medal. Supposed to be a momento but not sure what that was (no big deal to be honest)
So a well organised run for those who want a challenging end to year. Date of review: December 6, 2009
In short: Good solid race - more an intro to running than hard core In full: Organisation OK apart from weird over complicated baggage system that had 20 minute queues 30 mins before the race started.
Lots of freebiews before hand but slightly sparse after (bag, water and wooden medal)
Course of two halfs - well first 6 miles on roads around westminster/embankment etc. then into parks. Parks themselves were OK although route weaved around a bit and wasnt easy to work out where in race you were.
early pace markers out but later ones OK.
lots of friendly marshalls. Course largely flat. Date of review: October 11, 2009
In short: Marathon : Well organised, largely flat, bit soulless second half In full: I liked this race, organisation was spot on, very smooth, big athletes village. Great marshalling and lots of water stops with water, locozade and even gels at many especially in second half.
First half of course is definitely the better half and is run alongside th half marathon so quite a lot of people. But after first half miles or so found plenty of running space and no problems after that. Few "hills" in first ten miles, if you can call them that but flat after that.
Race loses a bit of appeal after the half marathon runners split off. Crowds naturally die down and it can be quite quiet for long stretches. Running around rowing lake is a bit pot luck depending on wind. Not a fan of from about 24.5 to 25.5 where you seem to be running away from finish in a deserted part of town.
Would recommend race for newbies and experienced runners alike and great for those groups who want to mix halfs and fulls in same race. Date of review: September 13, 2009