In short: Half decent 10 miler In full: I enjoyed my first attempt on this version of the Fred Hughes 10. Having run several of these races on the old course at the old venue I knew that the Striders work hard on their events. This was evident in the pre race info sheet advising about all the important matters like parking, baggage and distance to the start from the HQ. Signage at the HQ was also plentiful so toilets and changing could be found easily. The course and route was good in my opinion except for the first/last 300 metres which were fairly rough tarmac pavement. The rest of the course I enjoyed on decent country lanes with the odd moderate incline. Not quite as quick as the old course in my opinion but on the whole I believe this route is better.
In short: Fun in the sun. In full: Enjoyed my 2nd Brighton marathon as much as the first. Organisers seemed to have listened to feedback from last year as the start area facilities was much improved and control of the crowds on the seafront was excellent. Loved the mods on their scooters that lead the race very much. I like the current course too and some of the pinch points were much improved. Also if I had any influence with the organisers I would keep the power station section forever. It ROCKS! The mental challenge is perfect at that point in the race. The final point i'd like to make refers to the ugly word of cheating. I passed a power walker at around 14miles and the same lady again at 19miles... Perhaps extra timing mats in the switchback areas are now needed?? Date of review: April 13, 2011
In short: Friendly and relaxed off road marathon. In full: This years race was much better attended than the previous year so word has certainly got out amongst the regulars of the marathon circuit. This seemed to help in my view as there were many more people to chat with. The event route is easy to follow on the whole and 90% of it is scenic countryside. The town part I found fine and it makes you appreciate the countryside sections more.
I'll certainly return in future if fitness allows? Date of review: April 5, 2011
In short: Best road marathon in Essex In full: This race is epitomised by the happy marshalls who all have cheery smiles. It is also an event I would recommend to others as an alternative to 'bigger' spring marathons. However having said all that after 3 Halsteads on the trot i'm going elsewhere next year.
In short: A very good first effort from the organising team. I will return in future years. In full: This event could really rival any of the so called best marathons in the world in the next few years in my opinion. The start corrals seemed to work well where I was (red) with checks being carried out by polite volunteers. The course was interesting with any inclines of note all within the first ten miles. The power station section provided the right amount of challenge that a marathon needs and spectators were many and noisy in the sections where they were allowed in that area. The finishing coastal section from Hove to the pier area will live long in the memory for the huge crowd support that had to be seen to be believed it was fantastic! Maybe a painted line would be useful here so to assist the many many volunteers in showing the spectators the racing line though. Then finally the finish which was superb and a lesson to other races in how to organise this area well. Water, gatorade and banana were easily available and race t-shirts were offered in various sizes and proudly worn by many. Many Thanks to all the BM team and especially the the fab volunteers. Date of review: April 20, 2010
In short: Friendly marathon across the rural Hetrfordshire countryside. In full: Had a lot of fun at this event due in no small part down to the way the event is organised and secondly all the friendly runners who help each other round. The route is very scenic in places and is not too taxing with only a few small hills.
All the well stocked checkpoints were marshalled very well by happy volunteers as was the race HQ. My thanks to all at FVS Date of review: July 20, 2009
In short: First time at this race and I will be back. In full: Have to say I had read poor reviews of this race many times so I had low expectations of my debut at this event. However on the day I thought it was good. Parking was easy at 9.10am with loads of spaces and then a short five minute walk to the start area. Toilets seemed busy if you used those in the start area but you could also use those at the track or leisure centre which were quiet. Baggage drop was simple and efficient. On the course there was masses of water stations it was impossible to go thirsty. At the finish you were very quickly handed your medal, t-shirt (with choice of sizes) and ice lolly and there was loads of tables with water on to quench your thirst if it still needed quenching. A quick warm shower afterwards was also a pleasant surprise.
My thanks to all the cheery marshalls and helpers.
In short: Charming rural marathon In full: Nice race this one and 2nd time for me. HRR do a great job organising this race and it shows in all the small details. Like people coming and topping your drink up at the finish and sensibly priced refreshments and goody bags with items you can actually eat.
The race puts many much larger races to shame by making every runner feel welcome with every marshall and helper just being smiley and friendly. Thanks
One possible improvement for future years would be the addition or change to bottles of water at drinks station. If this is a cost issue please charge a pound or two more on entry costs and your race would still provide good value. Thanks to everyone from HRR and the other local clubs who assisted withe the event. Date of review: May 11, 2009
In short: Excellent low key friendly race. In full: I had my first ever DNF in many years of running but that does not take the gloss of what is a fine race. The atmosphere was excellent amongst all the runners and marshalls/lap counters completed their jobs efficiently and with good humour. As others have stated the 2 marshalls stood in the gail for hours on end deserve special praise. Thanks guys!
Small touches like the free tea/coffee and biscuit at the finish were appreciated by all. My thanks to all at Kenilworth Runners.
In short: 4th year on the trot for me it's a good race. In full: Well Done again to all at Bedford Harriers for the effort you put into this event. The chipped timing seemed a winner amongst the runners I overheard so well done for adding this too.