In short: a real x-country challenge In full: A different race, and a challenge along beaches and paths with a few stiles and gates thrown in. Last year we had rain and mud, this year it was sun and wind. But I think the last few miles on the beach into the head wind was the toughest part yet. Its certainly a change from the standard road race, but great fun for it. Date of review: June 30, 2008
In short: Good new course - fast & flat In full: Good points = course is flat and faster than the old one. Its also along the seafront, which seemed to provide better support and atmosphere, and it always seemed odd not to run the front when visiting Southend and I did not miss the return across the Wakering fields on the final hill! Overall, the new location seemed more organised and easier for cars to get in out, but I arrived early and got away quickly.
Bad points = less facilities at the new start ie I missed the nice sports hall and especially the showers and toilets. As for 'crossover' for runners, having been strongly told to keep to the right at the start I was surprised when the lead car and front runners returned on the first lap on the left and against the main field. Think this was a mistake, as the course naturally favoured staying on the right the whole way round, and it was a fairly basic error.
But overall, I think the race has benefitted from the move and has more potential to develop. Date of review: June 8, 2008
In short: a well organised race and a challenging course In full: race was well organised and marshalled. course is undulating - you seem to be always running up or down hill, but its an enjoyable route especially once you get away from the busier roads. facilites - changing rooms, car park etc were also better than average and there was good support along the course. Date of review: May 21, 2008
In short: a well organised, challenging x-country run In full: The second year I've run this, and I was better prepared physically and mentally, but the section back across Hadleigh marshes against the wind was as tough as ever. Seemed less mud this year though!
The race is well organised, the school has good facilities and there are plenty of water stops.
But I would mention marshalling (or lack of it) at the very end approaching the school field, where bizarrely for once I had no one to follow. The path had several branches and I had no real idea which one to take. I did work it out, mostly because I've done the 15 mile and 10k a few times before. But it could have been a bit more obvious. Date of review: January 28, 2008
In short: Well organised run with good facilities and goodies In full: The run is well organised and marshalled. HQ is impressive and the goodies were definitely above average. Hills at 4th and 9th miles were reasonably challenging.
Only slight let downs were the traffic and scenery, but there isn't much that DRR can do about that. Date of review: January 21, 2008
In short: Nice country run with a few challenging slopes In full: A nice run round the Essex countryside, with a few challenging hills, particularly the last mile or so. Organisation was generally good, but like others the finish seemed cramped and not sure why the water station couldn't been somewhere more convenient i.e. the large playing field next door.
A water station around the course would also have made things easier on a hot day. Date of review: September 24, 2007
In short: A nice, well organised off road race through Hainault Forest Country Park. In full: This is a nice, shorter run which is all off-road through a country park. A few slopes but nothing too frightening. Organisation is good, friendly and entry fee is cheap. Rather disappointing turn out this year, which is surprising as its a more favourable course compared to many of the south essex 10k road runs. Date of review: September 8, 2007