In short: Good atmosphere and race route spoiled by stupidity... Has anyone mentioned the cups!!!!! In full: First marathon for a while, so was (slightly) relieved to not get a London place, so as to return at a smaller event. However, for quite an expensive race, it was ruined by some poorly thought out planning, the biggest of which was the decision to supply both water and Gatorade in cups!
Do the organisers not run??? Everyone knows that cups are a pain in the ar*e at the best of times, let alone whilst trying to hold race pace after 21 miles or so!
I know Brighton tries to green but surely THE PRIORITY MUST BE TO ENSURE THAT THE RUNNERS STAY HYDRATED, ESPECIALLY ON A HOT DAY???
Had i known this beforehand, i wouldn't have entered as, if memory serves me correctly, it has been hot every year at this event, so to take this decision a short time beforehand smacks of penny pinching, as well as appearing underhand.
As if to rub salt in the wounds, just after 4 miles, my wife gave me a pre-planned bottle of Gatorade, only to find a fuel station no more than a mile further on dishing out Gatorade bottles! Where's the consistency?
Further on, i had to resort to the cups, and subsequently spilled sticky energy drink all down myself... Not pleasant when combined with the whiff of fish around the power station!
As previously mentioned, Expo was flat, with very little of interest, although the video message idea was a good one.
On the plus side, the crowds were great and the course not too bad apart from the power station section.
In summary, could/should be great but too expensive and ruined by some ill thought out decision making.
In short: AMAZING In full: Third time at London for me and it never disappoints. Crowds are A-M-A-Z-I-N-G, clockwork organisation, great course, superb value, perfect weather conditions and an 11 min 45 sec PB... What more could you ask for? Date of review: April 27, 2013
In short: Very well organised and great pre-Spring marathon preparation In full: Don't normally like races that involve laps, the decent scenery makes this the exception. Didn't race it flat out due to impending Spring marathon, but there were plenty of water stations and more gels offered than anyone could ever need, topped off with excellent marshaling and easy parking. Good course that is fairly flat except for three fairly small hills.
In short: Nice mid-week race In full: First time at RP 10k and was warned about the hill on numerous occasions, so when i encountered it at 7k it was a bit of a let down as it's hardly the north face of the Eiger!!! That said, due to it being a very warm, humid evening it still knoocked me sideways! Well organised but start was a bit hit and miss... no warning before the gun? Other than this minor grip, thanks RPAC. Date of review: July 10, 2012
In short: Need to understand what runners want and need before and after 26.2 miles. In full: Awful weather already mentioned several times so wont repeat. Things to change for next year:-
1) Changing area inside stadium, more toilets and more entrances/exits to stadium. 2) Covered baggage trucks... waited 15 mins in cold & wet (so much so that a very kind lady wrapped me in a VLM space blanket due to my uncontrollable shivering - thank you, whoever you are!), only to find that my dry change of clothes were almost as wet as my running gear!!! 3) I normally scoff at people that moan about the goodie bags but this was the exception... A Special K bar, some hand wash and no space blanket... REALLY!!! 4) Some sort of flourish, or even recognition that you had actually crossed the finish line... i had to ask someone??? 5) Someone to give you the medal, rather than having to trudge back up the slope to get out of the stadium and then the aforementioned goodie bag which just happened to have a medal in it to recognise your achievement.
On the plus side, the course is more picturesque than i expected... even in that weather. THE MARSHALLS AND SUPPORTERS WERE ABSOLUTELY OUTASTANDING... A MASSIVE THANK YOU FOR YOUR HELP AND ENCOURAGEMENT.
All in all, i wouldn't rush back unless the organisers take on board both mine and others CONSTRUCTIVE criticism and improve next year's event. Date of review: May 2, 2012
In short: BEST RACE IN THE WORLD!!! In full: Second time at London for me, and fair to say it was a lot better than the first. Once through the crowds, netted a 24 minute pb and the day couldn't have gone any smoother. Stunning scenery, amazing organisation (don't know how they organise 36,000 runners when i can't organise two kids to go to school in the morning!), and the support has to be seen to be believed! Thanks Virgin & London... will be back next year. Date of review: April 25, 2012
In short: FAST, FLAT, FRIENDLY. In full: Great course for a p.b... took over 4 minutes off mine! Very well organised by P.W.A.C. As i pulled up injured in last years event, it was the first time i got to see the whole course and whilst not as scenic as Tunbridge Wells Half, it's a lot flatter!!! Date of review: April 13, 2012
In short: FANTASTIC COURSE, ORGANISATION & ATMOSPHERE... A "MUST DO" RACE !!! In full: Second time at T.Wells for me and in terms of weather, a complete contrast from 2010!Beautiful weather, fantastically picturesque course (although you tend to lose sight of this when clambering up Spring Hill!), exceptional marshalling, enthusiastic crowds/drummers and Dame Kelly Holmes... what more could you want! Despite the hilly profile of this course i managed to take two minutes off of my half p.b, so despite my fairly low rating for "p.b potential" it is possible. In short, i love this race and will definitely do it for as long as my legs allow!!! Date of review: February 27, 2012
In short: PB unlikely... Do it for the scenery! In full: Local race for me so most of the route is my regular run, however the Worth Way is lovely and the atmosphere was great. One slight moan is the last 1 k, which takes you along the busy London Road. If the organisers could change the course at Gulledge Farm to drop down to Hophurst Hill and then loop back to the Worth Way, it would do away with the bland last 2 k... just a suggestion for next year as I'll definitely be back! Date of review: September 25, 2011