In short: Unexpectedly challenging In full: Credit to the organizers for finding a rural off-road course in the suburban sprawl of west London. It was harder than I expected but good fun nonetheless. Good choice of start venue, with a shopping centre nearby for the family and within easy cycling range of the railway station. A nice no-frills no-nonsense 10k to work off the Easter chocolate. Date of review: April 13, 2009
In short: A nice event but over-organized In full: I echo what Sleepy Lion said earlier - there was a lot of mailings and imho an opportunity missed to earn more money for the cause. For the price to get a T-shirt, traffic-free course, medal and chip timing is very, even excessively, generous given the fundraising cause. Tbh I would have done away with the chip and put the money to asthma - the start was spacious enough for everyone to be across the line within seconds.
The venue was nice, the course flat and straight although a bit windswept and desolate. Supervised baggage storage was excellent. The PA system was poor, I couldn't hear the safety talk and speeches properly. Unlike another previous reviewer, I had no trouble spotting the distance markers.
A good and enjoyable event and I'll be back, but I reckon it could raise more for the cause with a little less organization, if you see what I mean. Date of review: April 11, 2009
In short: Very good race In full: A friendly, sociable village green type of 10K, in a very good cause. The course is hardly inspiring, but then it is Frimley! That said, it's nice and varied with some inclines (none of them killers) to add some spice. A couple of comments. 1) It's all in densely-populated suburbia so we gents have to use the supplied loos rather than a bush. There were enough portaloos, but only just. You can't have too many. 2)Parts of the course were along the pavements of busy roads, so care is needed in places. But no complaints from me, and I'll be back next year. Date of review: April 5, 2009
In short: In danger of becoming a victim of its own success In full: The organizers are clearly bigging this one up to rival the GNR in the numbers game. That's fine, but the start venue was creaking at the seams today. I gave up on the baggage queue and stowed my gear on my bike instead. With some 15,000 runners the course was crowded throughout, although apart from the baggage hall it all went smoothly enough and is clearly a big undertaking so credit to the organizers. But it's expensive, and I wouldn't turn out if I didn't live in Reading. In short: great for the first timers, charity and do-a-challenge runners, less so for the more experienced and club runners. But a nice day out all the same. Date of review: March 29, 2009
In short: What a great day out! In full: First running of this event, and it was top notch. Start venue excellent, mixed-terrain and superbly scenic course, cheeriest marshals I've seen for a long time, African musicians at the pub partway round, no queues or delays, supervised baggage stow (which matters to a non-motorist with no car to leave gear in), medal and quality T-shirt. Nothing to find fault with, tbh. The sun was shining and it was a lovely day, but even if it had pelting with rain it would still have been a great race. An exemplary event. I'll be back! Date of review: March 22, 2009
In short: A great event In full: Flattish course, good mix of scenery, prompt start, good start and finish venue, supervised baggage ... a very well organized race. The weather was great and the locals were out in force. Plenty of water stations. Loads of marshals and rozzers attending the route too. Really good event, must do again. Date of review: March 15, 2009
In short: A fine village green 10K In full: One of the local perennial favourites for me. Always well organized (they arranged particularly good weather this year, which was good because parts of the course are a bit exposed. Good value, good facilities, seems like most of the village turns out to take part or cheer us on, and a nice up and down course that has some long flat bits to make up for the hills. Lovely scenery along by the river, Red Kites circling overhead to pick off the stragglers ... None of yer chip timing malarkey, a good simple old-fashioned race with no frills. I'll be back again next year. Date of review: March 1, 2009
In short: Mixture of commuterland and muddy towpath In full: Тоp marks to 209 Events for finding an alternative route at short notice and keeping everyone informed in advance. The outward leg was through pretty dull suburbia but in the circumstances the organizers did a grand job. Excellently marshalled throughout. A nice low-key run and thoroughly enjoyable. I'll be back next year. Date of review: January 25, 2009
In short: A good event In full: About four miles of steady climbing, then a second half that's mostly downhill or flat and fast. Great finishing venue, start venue is very bleak and bare - I reckon a tea wagon would do a good trade. Smoothly organized, very efficient baggage handling, plenty of vocal marshalls, overall a good day out. Date of review: December 14, 2008
In short: Fast and flat and very well organized In full: This was the second running of this race and as last year it was a fine day out. The course is flat and probably slightly downhill overall and although the towpath is narrow in places the field isn't so large that it gets congested and prevents overtaking. The organization was excellent - everything happened as promised, the buses were prompt and comfortable, plenty of water and marshals en route, baggage handling was quick and efficient, mile markers present and correct, etc. The lack of portaloos didn't bother me because being a chap I found a friendly bush. For the ladies it might be an issue, though. Nice medal at the end. This my third outing in a Purple Patch event, and every time they've done an excellent job. Date of review: November 9, 2008