In short: Great course, great medal, both in shape of pig In full: I believe that the reason this race is a slightly weird distance (11.7 km or 7.2 miles) is because it follows the shape of a pig. I didn't realise this until I downloaded my run and looked at the map on Garmin Connect. For those not local, it is called the Hog's Back due to the name of the hill outside Guildford.
The route is hilly but you'll definitely do a negative split as much of the uphill is in the first half and there is a glorious downhill section which goes on for at least a mile so you get your reward for the uphill, it's fantastic.
It was a cold morning and started to rain while I was in the toilet queue (more loos would be good, as ever). I was feeling miserable and was all for going home again! But the rain stopped and once I got going I felt much better. There was a slight delay due to the queue to collect race numbers, maybe people should arrive a little bit earlier. It's a 9am start, there are no closed roads so I wonder if the start could be made a bit later in future years so people can get out of bed at a slightly more civilised time, including the organisers and volunteers.
The only thing I would say is that I felt slightly misled by the "free refreshments at the end" on the website - I thought this meant tea and cake. What it actually meant was water and bananas. I don't like bananas, but I do like cake. Maybe the organisers could consider it for next year.
In the end it was a great race, I would definitely do it again and it's a good step-up from a 10k for newer runners. Date of review: December 8, 2014
In short: My local race, always do it In full: The race was marketed very efficiently this year which meant that it was a lot busier than in previous years and it took me a while to cross the line which was significant as there is only gun to chip timing. The organisers have said that they are looking into chip to chip timing for next year and I would suggest that they talk to Torbay AC about the Torbay Regatta 10k as I am pretty sure they had chip to chip timing yet only needed to close the road seconds before the runners started.
The route is a bit boring, two loops of Fleet, but there is a reasonable amount of support. I always do it as it is close to my house and there was a really good medal this year (MUCH better than the dreary Fleet half marathon 2014 medal). It is my PB course but I've been a bit slower the last couple of years. I'll be back next year. Date of review: October 26, 2014
In short: Great ladies race for beginners and experienced runners alike by organisers of Windsor HM In full: This race is organised by Windsor half marathon organisers and benefits from its infrastructure - plenty of loos, bouncy castle for the kids etc. It used to be an 8k but after a flirtation with "She Runs" last year, became a 10k. I hope that the organisers will consider reverting back to the 8k, as there are plenty of 10ks, 8k is a nice stepping stone from parkrun to 10k and is an interesting distance in its own right. But taken as a 10k, it's an undulating, challenging route, all on closed roads through Windsor Great Park and you can see the castle for the last mile or so.
It was a warm day - I found the two water stations sufficient and the cups didn't bother me as I don't like carrying a bottle when running. However, the bottles of water at the end were rather small, although you could top up from a tap - I think they should be 500ml. The race started at 12 noon. I can see from the Windsor half marathon reviews that there were several comments about the 1pm start. I am not sure, but I don't think this is the organisers being stubborn or reckless about safety - I think the park authorities don't allow the events to take place earlier - there is something else going on in the park.
The medal was good and the Mars bar appreciated. After a half marathon I might have wanted a bit more but it was fine for 10k. This was the 4th time I had run this event (3 times when it was 8k) and I will be back next year. Date of review: September 29, 2014
In short: Great race again but what have they done to the medal? In full: This is my local HM and starts around 10 minutes walk from my house. I got a PB last year but was running with a cold today so was 10 minutes slower. Marshals and onlookers very supportive and it was a beautiful day which wasn't good for fast times but helped a lovely atmosphere.
But what a disappointment at the finish. The medals in the last three years have been bespoke, really nice ones. Reading really raised its game this year, but for some reason Fleet went down a cheap route - it may not matter to lots of runners but if you are running your first HM you really want a special medal for it. What a shame - otherwise a perfect event. Date of review: March 16, 2014
In short: Great race in glorious weather In full: I reviewed this race last year and really enjoyed it then. I didn't get a PB this year but it was a glorious day and the course was lovely as usual. My only criticism was that I had to forego water at the second water station because the volunteers weren't getting the water out fast enough which meant by the time I got to number three I was pretty desperate for water. It wasn't superwarm, but it was warm compared with previous weather, being the first properly warm day of the year. I really like the technical t-shirt. But you've got a great logo City of Salisbury so please do a bespoke medal with it! Date of review: March 9, 2014
In short: Good little race In full: Pity there isn't a bigger turnout for this, as it's a decent 2-lap course and on this particular Sunday it was about the only race for miles around that hadn't been cancelled due to flooding.
I entered on the day. There were clean toilets in a university building and the course was well marshaled. Because of the rain we'd had it was quite boggy in parts, so I was glad I had taken trail shoes, and windy. The overall distance appears to have been a little over 5 miles, so although I had hoped for a slightly faster time, it was probably respectable for the conditions. Finishers received a medal, water and Jaffa cake. All in all a decent low key event and I hope it gets a bit more support in future years. Date of review: February 9, 2014
In short: Well organised, close to my house, does what it says on the tin In full: This was my 3rd time of running the Fleet 10k - it's about a 5 minute walk to the start from my house. It's good value for money with plenty of drinks/chocolate at the end and a medal. A gently undulating course, can be a bit tough on the second lap. Lots of support and great marshalling as always.
I was much slower than in previous years but still managed to bag a bottle of wine as part of a team prize. And that's my only criticism - the prize-giving needs to be a lot slicker. Sort out who has won the prizes, make sure you have a working microphone and make the winners feel a bit special! But otherwise a great event and I will be back next year. Date of review: October 27, 2013
In short: Great race - and lovely memento In full: This is a lovely race around lanes in north Hampshire. I found it rather hilly, but someone else said he thought it was much easier than the Salisbury 10, which I flew round. So maybe I'm just not very fit at the moment! However, encouraging marshals, results on website quickly and very good value for £10. Date of review: October 20, 2013
In short: Great 10k In full: When I do a 10k I like a medal and a chocolate bar at the end, and Swallowfield delivered on this, as well as giving a water bottle! It's good value for money and chip timing would be nice as the start is quite tight, but it's not a big problem. The course is not as hilly as the elevation I saw beforehand suggested, but the second 5k is pretty flat, and after the uphill you get a great downhill. The marshals were pretty enthusiastic on the whole.
At the time of writing this review the results are not yet up (4pm) - I guess I have been spoilt by the insane efficiency of Teignbridge Trotters in Devon who appear to be able to post their results more or less as soon as a race is over, despite using manual timing! I think race organisers should provide a statement on their websites saying when they expect to have the results available.
On the whole this is a great race. One suggestion: more signage as you enter the village to say where the car park is. Date of review: September 22, 2013
In short: Very flat course a bit dull but very well organised In full: It had been very hot in the lead-up to this event but on the day it was cloudy, however, still humid. I suffered quite a lot so rather than a PB on the pancake flat course (2 laps around Dorney Lake, where the Olympic rowing was held), ran my slowest 10k time in 2 years! However, the event is very well organised, great bespoke medal and a well-stocked goody bag of drinks and snacks. Would I do it again? Maybe - if it were in October! Date of review: July 26, 2013