In short: Good but can be even better In full: The good bits: -scenic first half of the route -good finish at Millennium stadium -excellent medal and T shirt -good support at parts of the course
Could improve: -position water and lucozade stations further apart and at even distances throughout the course; some water and lucozade stops were too close together leaving big gaps after that. -remove the cobblestoned part of the course; it could injure someone's ankle badly (being a GP myself I should know, having seen such injuries in the past) -too much time spent going in and out of the park; a more "square" route would be better, in my view.
First 18.5K flat as a pancake; next 1.5K with a vertical gain/drop of approx. 250ft either way. Definitely the most challenging part of the race, especially as the path is narrow and elite athletes try to overtake with little space to do so comfortably. A rethink of part of the course would help greatly, but well done for accommodationg 9000 plus people so well. Date of review: October 16, 2006
In short: Bizarre organisation decisions In full: I will start with the positives: race started on time; first part of each loop is scenic; waterstops were good and volunteers were friendly and helpful. In all, it could have been a much better race, if the oganisers allowed the 16-mile run to start at 8am and the 8.2 mile run at 8:30am, not vice versa. As it was it must have suited them by having less crowds at the water stops, but by asking the 16 mile runners to pass Kingston bridge for the second time by 10:10am, they put a lot of pressure on runners like my wife and myself, beginners who can only get close to 12-minute miles and yet have the stamina to complete the 16 miles in 3hrs 30-3hrs 40 (we have done 3 16 milers and a 20 miler, plus 4 half marathons so we know we have the legs for the distance, though not the speed). By withdrawing support after 11:40am we were doomed to failure on a warm day. With that in mind and despite getting close to the bridge by 10:11am we decided to pull out half way, only to be asked by a marshall "did we not wish to do a second loop?". Yes, we did, but (a) we thought the bridge would be closed for us and (b) no, we cannot do it without hydration. Perhaps the organisers can spare a thought for people who travelled 230km to get to the race only to find such limits imposed on them. Date of review: October 8, 2006
In short: a flat, friendly half marathon course In full: My wife and I did this race last Sunday (1/10/06) and we enjoyed it despite the rainy, windy conditions. It is flat and therefore suited to fast times. The marshals are friendly and helpful. Date of review: October 3, 2006
In short: The king/queen of Welsh 10Ks In full: excellent organisation; well marked km markers; adequate water stations; quite flat and good for PB runners. Weather a bit hot this year. 1pm start a bit of a problem for amateurs, especially those travelling from afar. Very supportive croud. Well done for an excellent race! Date of review: September 25, 2006
In short: Good, fairly flat course-little support, poor marshalling at times In full: The main race started more that 6 minutes late; at some stage a marshal got it wrong and send some of us runners down the wrong path; we thus ended up doing 360m less than the rest of the field and made our results look better. I guess it's not our fault as it was not intentional to run 9.64K rather than 10, but you'd expect better after 21 years of this race. Crowd support was sparse anywhere else except for the finish, but those who were there warm warm hearted and supportive. I liked the medal but as I never got a T-shirt despite paying for one when Is ent the entry fees in I have to say again that the organisation leaves a lot to be desired. Fairly flat course though and good for PB-my wife and I shaved 5min 17sec off our previous PB in the distance. GPS says ascent 1326ft and descent 1331ft, so not a "pancake flat" course. Will see how Swansea Bay fares in 3 weeks time! Date of review: September 3, 2006
In short: terrain not suited to fast running In full: Organisation before the start could have been better; queueing in the wrong queues due to lack of information. Race map details should have been sent rather than circulated on race day. 30K even was actually 31.71K on GPS. First part of race suited to running; second part rocky, with overgrown spiky vegetation and uneven surfaces not suited for inexperienced runners. Better suited to walking. Marvellous scenery though. Date of review: August 15, 2006