In short: What winter running is all about. Simply great fun In full: Chippenham Harriers do an outstanding job organising this stunning and difficult cross country squelch. If you think you don't like off road mud, think again. This is a great event to have a go at. Date of review: February 1, 2007
In short: Too many basic things done very badly In full: I have run this event several times before. Never again.
I heard no announcements or encouragement for runners to get into the start area well in time. No announcements stressing how important it is to get into the right place for your speed. This has to be constant at a big event to make it work.
The result was that close to 500 runners were stuck in the bottleneck from the rec up to the start area when the race started - despite the fact that hey had started the 200 yard walk up 10 mins before the start.
The result? Quick runners in the mix crossing the line 4 mins after the gun and spending 3 crowded miles trying to get going.
If you want 6,500 runners get organised properly - particularly communication on the day. Otherwise don't be so bloody greedy.
Runners are people, not cattle. Date of review: March 20, 2005
In short: Perfect pre London prep. All I had to do was run. In full: When you run a race you want to be able to concentrate on yourself and your running; nothing else. The organistaion of this event meant I could do just that and put in a time that I was just delighted with. Lovely route too. Date of review: March 7, 2005
In short: Tough run with a sense of fun. Cracking In full: Beautiful course, great fun, lovely marshalling, had a ball. The only downer was the long delay at the start - but the runners in the baggage queue were grateful Date of review: February 27, 2005
In short: Cracking event. Marshalls deserved a medal for standing for 4 hours in such cold conditions In full: 20 mile races are perfect for marathon training. If well organised it means you can switch off and concentrate on running. This race was just the job. Thanks to RRR.
The memento caused controversy. I liked the pen but runners are a staid old lot that like t shirts and medals. Please don't put the price up to accommodate this. Its just fine.
But why were there so many worms on the roads? Very odd. Date of review: February 21, 2005
In short: The biggest event I have done. The numbers get in the way of it as a pure running event but it is a great occasion to be involved in. In full: The organisers did a very very good job. I came away very satisfied that the entry fee was money well spent, despite the high price. More importantly I thoroughly enjoyed the run.
I have two constuctive criticisms.
The split of the field into 3 large groups was a mixed blessing. With over 3000 setting off in each group without any speed grading, slower runners near the front caused the inevitable weaving in and out from the faster runners. This repeated later in the race as the faster runners from the second and third wave caught up with the slower runners ahead -a and there were a lot of runners in the lead group who would finish well down the order. I would grade the filed more effectively by using the time boards used successfully at major half marathons and ensure that the waves are more homogenous with egall of the slow runners are in the third wave.
And finally, although the drinks station on the course were excellent, there was not enough water at the finish Date of review: October 11, 2004