In short: A very enjoyable and rewarding challenge In full: I was previously unaware of this race but I will definitely be coming back. I thoroughly enjoyed it as it's a great off-road run in fabulous surroundings. Very well organised with loads of friendly marshalls at all key points on the course. Lots of sweeping downhills with some very testing uphills too and after the recent rain, lots of mud. Thanks to Ashford Tri for putting on a great open XC race that I will recommend. Date of review: November 14, 2016
In short: Outstanding race - brilliantly organised In full: This is just a great race on so many levels. The organisation is outstanding and the special touches (beer, cakes and brass band at the finish; the piper at the start and various points on the course) are really appreciated. The marshalling and fuel/water/sponge stations are also excellent - so many across the whole route.
For someone like me who rarely goes beyond 10 mile races these days, it is really tough (especially this year with all the mud) but it is an outstanding, challenging course that hugely rewards proper preparation.
Great goody-bag etc and overall, the race delivers fantastic value for money. Date of review: July 5, 2016
In short: Pure enjoyment In full: For me, still the best race around.
As a 5 mile race, it's great - fast, varied course that some years is hot and dusty and in other years (like 2016) is wet, muddy and almost like a X-C in places.
However, what really sets it apart is the outstanding organisation and unmatched good humour that underpins everything about it. The village green atmosphere - indeed, the whole race day experience - is just great from beginning to end, with so many unique touches, and if you don't usually bother to hang around for the prize-giving ceremony, you really should do for this one !
I ran in the first H5 in 1999 (looking back at the results, there were only 167 finishers) and since then, it's just got bigger and better. Date of review: June 5, 2016
In short: Idyllic .... but tough ! In full: This race would be hard to beat for scenery, especially on a glorious Spring morning like today. It is also very friendly and welcoming, with unexpected crowd support and lots of friendly, helpful marshalls.
However, it's a tough course ! One very "big" hill at between 6 and 7K and on a hot day like today, it's a hard workout. My finishing time was 4 minutes down on a recent (flat) 10K in March and I'm sure I wasn't the only one.
Nevertheless, time is not everything and this is a very nice race indeed and I enjoyed the whole experience.
In short: Lots of positives In full: A very enjoyable out-and-back along the river towards Canterbury and back. Flat as the proverbial "pancake", which gives it definite PB potential subject to one caveat (see below).
Nice village hall HQ, friendly atmosphere, plenty of nearby off-road parking etc and there was a good mix of runners from sub-40 to 60 minutes plus.
This year, the cattle grids were covered with boarding that generally seemed to hold up well. The scenery along the river is nice and the results were up very quickly after the race had finished.
Only real "warning" is that the race shares the footpath with other users (cyclists, walkers etc and being out-and-back, other runners). On a bright, sunny day like today this meant that there were a few times on the way back that I had to "dodge" on and off the track to avois a collision !
Not the end of the world, it was still a great run; but it does mean that there is a limit on the number of runners the race can safely accommodate. Date of review: March 23, 2014
In short: Great new Half with several unique features In full: Great new race that was deservedly a sell-out. Mix of mildly undulating country lanes with off-road sections that were fairly firm yesterday but could be very interesting during heavy rain !
Start and finish in the stadium was superb and the finishing clock with runners names as we finished was going the "extra mile". Facilities and parking were also as good as it gets.
10K option for beginners and a great atmosphere.
Only one area that could be improved was the narrow bridge. On the 2nd lap there was a delay while other runners completed their 1st lap, but that is a very minor niggle and overall it's a great addition to the calendar. Date of review: December 2, 2013