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
In short: Tough, but a great work -out In full: One of the hardest halfs in Kent. There are a lot of hills and only the last couple of miles provide any sustained relief. However, that's not necessarily a bad thing - the course is a real challenge and very rewarding if you run well.
Excellent marshalling and water stations. The support was much appreciated and Deal Tri put a lot of effort into making it an enjoyable occasion.
Nice race venue with hot food and drink on offer and personally, I didn't mind it being a mile or so away from the start ( ideal for a warm up/warm down) although I might not have appreciated it on a cold, wet day.
I hope the runner who collapsed in sight of the finishing line is OK - always sad to see that happen to a fellow runner. Date of review: May 13, 2012