In short: disapointing for fast runners as multiple laps and continous overtaking take their toll on your pace. Good for frist time runners though.. In full: I was after a PB at this race given reports of a flat, fast course. The multiple laps were of interest to get the pace right and receive good split time information. On a positive note the nature of this kind of low key race means there were some positives;
- easy and close parking to the registration (although a long walk to the start from there) - quick and efficient registration - no queues for the loos! - the pre-race atmosphere was friendly and relaxing. - my supporters said the refreshments were excellent! - Its very handy having the water stop every 2.2 miles and have your own drinks available there. The water stop volunteers gave great support - a big thanks to my friends Jo and Dave who helped out there.
However there were some issues before, during and after the race.
- There were not enough marshals and most of those that were there were not as attentive or supportive as at other races. - There were chip mats but they served no purpose but to count the number of laps for the organisers as they were not positioned at the start/finish but half way around the lap. - In my case no one knew what lap i was on so i relied on my friends telling me. - I was overtaking slower runners very regularly, often four abreast across the narrow lanes, which made if difficult to take a tight line and impacted my pace, stride and the distance run. I expected this but the pre-race briefing should have warned runners about overtaking etiquette. - the finish was let down - no obvious finishing point, no atmosphere and no photographer. - Low key prize giving, even though I won the race outright (and as a female that doesn't happen often!) there was no recognition of this other than being first female.
In summary, this is a unique race with great runner camaraderie (it was great to spend time with the ultra runners too), and with a little more organisation could be improved to be a true gem of a race in the calender. Date of review: July 2, 2012
In short: Potential PB course if the race was smaller or capped... Gun went off with out a count down! In full: Great course, biggest problem was the start I couldnt get to my start pen and was left with less than a minute to get into the yellow. Having run 1.17 I wasnt classified as elite (previous was 1.20), altough other races of similar size/status this wouldnt be the case.
I dont like to bitch about races as Reading use to be a race that was one of my favourites but the start was sheer madness! After being told to walk the long way round from a marshall with the fun runners dressed up I literally had less than a minute to the start getting through the crowds. Unfortunately a Good for age running friend never got to his pen and was held back by over 15mins slower than he can run. Consequently pulling out very disappointed and it ruined his race. Whilst I run a little quicker this year I was hopeful of a PB and the weather was there just some poor organisation. Also for a hugely profitable race only going to 5th place for the ladies is poor considering the first few places are dominated by Kenyan's. Good Marshalls and of course happy crowds, my friend summed it up, it was like running "London Marathon" with not enough space. Hope this gets sorted next year as the marshalls and supporters/stadium finish are positive Date of review: April 1, 2012
In short: Great course PB potential if they could find a longer loop at the start and avoid the Park at 12 miles to go through the town. Excellent first time half and would suit all typers of runner In full: As the leading lady and eventual winner I was in panic after the first loop go through the start again to see the back of the race and nowhere to run through losing about 20 secs to cut across the pack with lots of flying elbows. The finish through the town on a wet day although some supporters that were cheering presented a risk when slippery and had to slow, additionally running past the road where the start/finish barrier was could affect some runners moral. If the organisers could look at the start and the last 1.5 miles this was otherwise a perfect race. I also agree that maybe rather than kit lorries to have a flat covered off area and line the bags in race numberorder as the trucks were very full and with the rain bags were not coming off in order or quick enough... Less of the minors and more of the BIG positives:
Excellent location for the 1st half marathon, on time start, good race finish with water/bananas and helpers at hand for the chip cutting and water top ups. Excellent marshaling all the way round (+ supporters), good commentary and a lot of hard work put in. Hope Maidenhead residents appreciate the hard work and the opportunity this brings to the local area. I will be back next year to try and retain the ladies title especially with the great prizes...... Date of review: September 4, 2011
In full: Excellent organisation, still early days as far as being a bigger field and more competitive. A lot bigger than last years attendance and becoming a great training run pre- Henley Half. Very friendly, challenging and an enjoayble very scenic run! Be back next year to reclaim the ladies title!. Welldone for a well organised race only in its 2nd year Date of review: September 21, 2009
In full: Well worth the trip, well organised, very friendly some support on the course. First part up hill slightly and 2nd half down hill, the only part i didn't account for was the lap round the field which was slightly bumpy. Well marshalled and organised, cash prizes and mugs for completing. Great food to buy whilst onsite. Overall excellent day out, will be there next year to defend my title!!! Welldone Bearbrook, put other 10k organisers to shame. Date of review: August 12, 2009
In short: would have been excellent if they had a marshalls between the paths at 7-8mile mark In full: Sent off the fron field of runners including myself who was in the lead for the ladies race and a sub 1hr 20 half marathon. wasted valuable time due to not having clear markings. Lost the race to poort organisations!!! ended up running 14 miles and a rubbish half marathon of the year time. Seriously disappointing and I know the field i was with feel the same. I expect to see an apology out. Date of review: July 26, 2009
In short: Excellent organisation, prizes and real friendly feel In full: the Bracknell organisers are owed credit, this race is weli sponsored (fantastic prizes) even down to providing finisher t-shirts in different sizes which most races either do not supply or give Xl. I like the atmosphere, organisation, very prompt start. the course is challenging with hills but scenic and has great support at the finish. Welldone to Bracknell Forest council!!! I wont the Sweatshop vouchers for coming 2nd and a glass trophy...be back next year Date of review: May 11, 2009
In short: Overall a good experience and great for either training or to help support a London Elite marathon entry. In full: I think the race as a whole very organised. I am use to races with lots of support i.e. London/New York so I found intially it very challenging mentally. The field of runners (mainly club) also spread out very quickly and for most of the 26 miles I was on my own. Definatley good for more experienced runners because the roads are not closed off and amongst dodging traffic, you also have to get through the mental challenge. A big thank you to all the marshalls and the organisation team. The only little dissapointment was no goody bag, or sports drinks at the end. Date of review: October 25, 2006
In short: Good race but the worst finish ever In full: I have run this race twice and with experienced club runner friends. All of which hated the end of the race which finishes up a steep hill. I do think this race is fun,scenic and well organised but more like cross country and could be tough for beginners. Like other ratings needs to finish in a more open place for spectators. Date of review: October 18, 2006