In short: Lightning Flashed, thundered roared and down it poured..... In full: What a start thunder and lightning and torrential rain before the start - did it dampen the spirits - not a bit.
The race (and for those mental guys at the front it was a race) is tough - I managed a Personal Worst time for a marathon - so unless it's you first ever marathon a PB is unlikely.
The course is cleverly designed to extract as much psychological torture as possible. Every hill you run down - you will be running back up at some point. You know how far ahead the leaders are as they come steaming by you in the opposite direction. And then there is reaching the final line for the first time, where you have to turn round and do it all over again.
Having said that, the downhills and flats (and quite a few of the hills) were all runnable.
Hats of to the marshalls - top notch cheekiness from all of them.
The only bad point was that I had the wrong name printed on my running number - but by the end of the race I had stopped thinking there was somebody else behind and became my new alter ego "Matt"
P.S. Hats of to the guy from Colchester who did the steps 5 times (instead of the normal 4) - I tipped the marshals a fiver to send you the wrong way ;-)
Overall a great race - may even do it again in 2 years time.
In short: Early start to the season In full: Laps round the country lanes were noas dull as I feared - support all along the way kept the spirits up.
Getting a hat mad a nice chnage from the usual T-shirt, start was well organised, I sure there is a good organisational reason as to why we finish were we did but it's no fun hanging around for a bus (or worse walking back).
Still quite enjoyed the quick course - no PB - the slight undulations (and early start) put pay to that.
In short: chilly start - warm glow at thefinish In full: freezing cold start - soon warmed up, course was well organised with good support from the marshalls. Course is a little dull - going up and down the kerb on the footpaths was not my idea of fun (my usual races are x-country) but for speed this is a great race - having removed the hills from my usual races I chipped 30 minutes of my PB - so the race did what it was suppose to do.
In short: Like clockwork In full: Organisation is stupendous - park next to the start line. Number collection and baggage drop were quick, map and details were clear. I did the 50K -although the GPS sais it was shorter than that - still how can I complain when the start line appeared sooner than I had expected. No major hills, all are runable, the do on and one though. lots of undulations out there, keep the head down and don't think about. plenty of nutters on the course - check out tyregirl.com, and plenty of people using this as a training run - mad people.
Overall really enjoyed this one Date of review: August 9, 2010
In short: Perfect course - full of colour In full: What a great day - I had done the 20 miler a few years ago, but tried the 33 miler this time (first ultra).
Course is great - lots of variety, fantastic colours: running through the bluebell woods, the yellow of the oil seed rape, followed by green rolling hills. Course undulates but most of it was gentle and I found most of it quite runnable.
Stations are well spaced, full of goodies and friendly marshalls.
Route finding is quite easy so long as you read the instructions and don't daydream!
The only downside for me was the sun - got a little sunburnt, still takes my mind off the tried legs
Well done MRC - great event, will be back next year - need another mug for my collection