In short: Tough but tremendously rewarding experience In full: Even without the terrible weather this would have been a tough race. A combination of having to navigate 56 miles with a lot of climbing made it a challenge both mentally and physically.
It was very well organised with good support along the route and a warm welcome at the end from people who had been out all day. Thanks to all who helped in any way.
This was my longest run and I'd have to say it was a tremendous experience and this race has potential iconic status in the running calendar.
If you're thinking about doing it next year... I'd advise doing it with a running mate with a support team at least at checkpoints 2,3,4 and 5. Also you don't need to overdo the training. We did 4 weeks of 60 - 65 miles including a marathon and our longest run (30 miles) in one week. Although we were tired at the end, we still had the energy to up our pace in the last six miles - so although we were exhausted we must have had something left!
If you fancy an ultra you'd have to go a long way to beat this one.
In short: A well organised marathon with great support from the marshalls. In full: This was a well organised event with exceptional support (both vocal and cullinary) from the marshalls and others on the course.
I found the first eight/nine miles quite attractive running along the coast (once we got out of Margate itself). After that I thought the course was incredibly dull and monotonous. Mile after mile along the concrete above the sea wall was not my idea of an enjoyable run.
If you can cut out the boredom and are lucky with the weather (as we were apart from the strong headwind from 10 - 19 miles), this course has definite PB potential as it is virtually flat - a few gentle slopes of 100/200m.
Thanet Runners can be really proud of the effort they put in to make this a really welcoming event. Thank you very much to all who contributed. Date of review: September 7, 2008
In short: Well organised, friendly race. In full: Well organised, small (but growing) friendly race in a beautiful part of the country.
The drinks stations were great with nice touches and friendly volunteers. The route was extremely well marked until the last mile (through the city centre)when some local hoodlum had obviously removed some of the signs.
Although it was a very attractive route through a couple of grand estates and attractive villages there was a great deal of running on tarmac considering it was a "trail race". That's the only reason I wouldn't do it again.
But thanks very much to the organisers for putting together a really good event (the marathon) which was a pleasure to take part in. Date of review: August 11, 2008
In short: So much potential - I really wish the organisers could sort the shortcomings because Edinburgh could be a real highlight of the marathon calendar In full: I thought the course was good, interesting and had definite PB potential. The runners were well serviced and you could run your own race throughout. Thanks to all the marshalls and water providers who stayed out on the course for so long. But there were big problems with the day. I really want Edinburgh to succeed as a marathon. Please, please listen to the comments made by the runners - involve runners and spectators more in the planning of the race and basically do more for the exhorbitant price you charge for the race and sell your great city more effectively.
The start was a nightmare - congestion caused by inadequate space and allowing spectators into the area around the starting pens. The last thing you want before a marathon is to fight your way down and then up a narrow street with the starter continuing to insist you must be in your pens 15 minutes before the start. I would if I could!
The finish was wholly inadequate - alright for those who had booked their grandstand seat, but pretty hopeless for anyone else. Access was nearly impossible without a car parking ticket and all the spectators from our group missed the finish by a considerable margin. The supporters had a really frustrating day as movement around the course was really difficult. Not what you want when you've travelled 400 miles to support a runner. It seemed to me that there were places to watch which would have been fairly easy to access but there was no help to visitors in the information - only warnings about congestion around the finish. Why not include some suggestions to people who don't know the area?
Don't get me going on the Expo. I thought it was pointless two years ago - it seemed even worse this year. If you have travelled a long way the last thing you want to do is spend another couple of hours going to pick up an envelope with your name and address on. OK it's a way of keeping the cost down through sponsorship but why then is it one of Eurpoe's most expensive marathons?
In short: A great experience. In full: Green start - I was surprised how well you could get away and get into your running, so no excuses for a slow time because of crowds.
The organisation was excellent apart from the pointless registration and expo. What is that all about? The location is inconvenient and the last thing I want to have to do after work / the day before a marathon.
The course itself is pretty dull and not a patch on Amsterdam or Paris - but the support on route and atmosphere is outstanding. Date of review: April 13, 2008
In short: Well organised and a pleasure to run despite the weather. In full: Thnaks to the club for the good organisation and the marshalls for their endurance and encouragement.
This is a good warm up with London - basically flat with gentle undulations and one or two short hills. The route, although not traffic free, was rural and pleasant enough. One good feature was that there were no long straight sections.
I'd definitely recommend it to FLM runners. Date of review: March 16, 2008
In short: Well organised event and well worth a look in future years. In full: Pretty atrocious conditions put a a bit of a dampener on the race in terms of support. But thanks to the police, marshalls and drink stationeers who did a sterling job. I think this a well organised race - my second year. There are advantages and disadvantages with three laps, but it's good to know what's coming if you are looking for a PB - which is achievable. The relay adds a bit of interest as well. Date of review: December 2, 2007
In short: Great experience. Wonderful scenery. Best ever race. In full: Fantastic race, run through some beautiful countryside. Well organised and required a bit of "working out" along the way, but enough clues and markers to reassure runners they were on the right track.
Thanks to all the organisers and marshalls. A nice touch with the Mars bars and jelly babies at the checkpoints.
Good idea not to have a T-shirt/medal and keep the cost down instead.
Best race I've ever done - and I've done a few! Date of review: September 16, 2007
In short: My first ultra. Unfortunate conditions. Left me feeling a bit flat. In full: I am still not sure what to make of this experience. I felt it was pure endurance and not a lot about running. The old railway line section was the only time we ran for more than two miles and certainly the only section we could run with any confidence.
The bogs and marshes were treacherous and seemed to go on for ever and having to climb for a mile and a half through two foot high gorse was no fun.
The check points were outstanding as was the support from fellow competitors.
The organisation was rather pompous and there wasn't even a well done at the end after ten and a half hours of torture.
I know I caught it in atrocious conditions but I think I'll accept the life time ban which was threatened in the literature! Date of review: July 8, 2007