In short: Overpriced and too many organisational issues In full: Having sworn last year I wouldn't do this one again, it unfortunately fit well into my training schedule so I thought I'd give it another chance. Hideously overpriced for a race with nothing special about it, no goody bag, t-shirt, etc to justify the cost. To ask people to pay £2 in addition for the priviledge of leaving a bag was insulting. Race start delayed AGAIN this year as they can't figure out the parking, and a long wait to get out of the car park unless you were one of the last finishers. On a positive note, the marshalls seemed more cheerful this year - there just weren't enough of them - two people to man a water stand isn't enough. Clearly this is a PB course and if you're desperate for one, this is a good race to do, but just be prepared to turn up early, stay late and spend lots of money! Date of review: February 18, 2013
In short: Wonderful race - except maybe for those hills In full: I've done this race 3 times now and every time am caught out by how hard it actually is. Many uphills and quite a steep downhill which is torture after all the ups! Also a long up around mile 12 which is just cruel. :) Having said all that, you always get a decent goody bag and t-shirt. This is the one race I've ever done that has enough toilets at the start, and plenty around the course. Strong support from villages and really nice marshals. Many offers of jelly babies along the way.
This course is much harder than any other HM I have done. I was disappointed with my time today, caused by my own foolishness of overdrinking and then getting stitches/cramps and having to walk repeatedly. I could have got away with less walking on a flatter course.
The scenery is beautiful, can't think of any ugly bits on the course. That combined with the good organisation would make me come back - but I might try just marshalling next year! Date of review: October 14, 2012
In short: Just big enough yet low-key In full: Pros: Nice course along fields, towpath and a little bit of town. Well measured and marshalled. Cons: Started 10 minutes late for some reason (PA system terrible)
Did a PB despite first mile of course being crowded and narrow in places. All in all a very pleasant race with just enough people to make it appeal to all levels. Date of review: September 30, 2012
In short: My new favourite race? In full: Loved the convenient car parking, after picking up your race pack you could even sit inside - a rarity and nice on a day like today when a little cold. No ugly bits on the course and probably flattest one I've ever done. Lots of happy marshalls. Minor gripes - no goody bag and baggage retrieval still a 15 minute process which I understand is a huge improvement on last year. Overall, loved the race, a really pleasant surprise. Date of review: September 16, 2012
In short: First timer still on a high and signed up for 2013! In full: I loved the race. It's probably the best organised one overall I've ever done. My only gripe would be: the app was great but iphone only, please do it for Android if possible.
Amazing atmosphere. Yes, the power station bit is dull, and comprises running around a whole industrial park at just the wrong time - 20-23 miles is grim.
There are many out and back sections which are more fun when you're on the way back than on the way out!
As a beginner I had all kinds of fears about having a disastrous injury along the way, which didn't happen, but there were many helpful marshals and loads of water stations so you were never too far from help. Date of review: April 21, 2012
In short: Nice mix of town centre/crowds with quieter off road footpaths In full: I did enjoy this race, but there are many narrow bits and I kept getting held up by slower runners. Also, my garmin measured this at 6.37m, which was discouraging at the end when I thought there wasn't much longer to go and then there was, and I might have pushed myself harder if I'd known my time wasn't going to be as good as I thought it was going to be at around 5 miles. Well organised, lots of parking and toilets. Easy to get in and out traffic-wise, would definitely do again but perhaps start myself a bit further up the field. Date of review: May 30, 2010
In short: Great race but hard for a beginner In full: The course was interesting in terms of variation and scenery. However as a first time half marathoner I have to say the hills were somewhat "challenging" although I'm proud that I wasn't walking up all of them like a lot of people around me were! Great amount of toilets and drinks and well signposted. My only gripe is I actually struggled to find the car park - signs along the way would have been nice for those of us who aren't local. I then went off after the race in my husband's car only to come back and find the car park blocked off unless you came from one way (and not the way we had come). The website also seems to have been down yesterday and today which is really unfortunate timing. Parking aside an enjoyable race although it did nearly kill me in places (partly my fault for starting off too fast). On a positive note it will make Reading seem really easy!