In short: tough, tough, tough! but do it anyway . . . In full: what a trip! Day 1 - take it steady and you'll be fine. Day 2 - some lovely running in the second half - once you've got past all the steps. Day 3 - forget about running, forget about times, just keep moving forwards - slip, slide, climb, fall, walk and stagger to Lands End. Fabulous atmosphere, fantastic staff and an amazing event. Date of review: October 5, 2010
In short: some lovely views, nice atmosphere - but too much road and boring last few miles! In full: there are lots and lots of good bits to the marathon - the first 18-ish miles are lovely, great views, not too hilly. Really friendly well-stocked water-stations, reasonable route-marking and good maps. Nice laid-back atmosphere, too. But there were some bad bits - lots of road for a trail marathon, a sudden lack of signage at about 19-20 miles and an interminable, flat, hard-surfaced last few miles that really sapped my will to live! I wonder if there;s any way the distance could be made up earlier, out in the fields/woods, and then the course brought more directly into Salisbury at the end instead of through what felt like miles of village roads and pavements? A good event though, and great value. Tough in the heat! Date of review: August 10, 2010
In short: glorious place, fabulous marshalls, great support. In full: thanks Snowdonia, I was in two minds about coming back after last year, but so glad I did! Shame about the lack of electricity and therefore the lack of tea at the end ... A huge thank you to all the marshalls and supporters who stood in the rain and fed us chocolate .. and then claimed we were the crazy ones!! Date of review: October 25, 2009
In short: great race, great course, but some big points that need sorting In full: the good bits: a lovely, flat course with good atmosphere, both amongst the runners and spectators. Great pacers for a number of finish times, plenty of water stations, clear mile markers, good marshalls, a really enjoyable run. Nice medal. Good 'big city' race feel.
The bad bits: a start time before the first train gets in, even though Cardiff's easy to get to by train and the station's an easy walk away. Pre-race instructions that don't tell you which roads are closed, and unclear parking descriptions. Lack of signs in the runners village, queues for toilets (though it turned out there was another bank of loos nearby - just no signs to tell anyone!). Expensive, with a rubbish goody bag.
Please, please don't get any bigger - you can barely handle what's there now. Either get a decent goody bag, or scrap it altogether and charge us less. Park and ride? or a later start time to allow us to use public transport? Some big signs in the runners village to tell us where things are!!! Also warning signs before water stations to avoid people either missing them or suddenly swerving across the road. And, as everyone else has said, better baggage reclaim.
but thankyou Cardiff for a nice day - and thanks to the marshalls and volunteers. Date of review: October 22, 2009
In short: great fun on a cold, frosty morning! In full: really enjoyed this, a particularly nice touch for me being able to take the dog! Nice mix of beginners and quick runners, good atmosphere, and appreciated going past the spectators a few times (though the dog got far more support than me!) The post-race mulled wine was very welcome too - when I finally found it! Date of review: December 8, 2008
In short: speechless. Which, for me, is unusual. In full: What a stunner. Weather appalling, scenery incredible, camaraderie astonishing. The best marshalls, drinks station volunteers and spectators ever, they made the event for me. I had a shocker of a race, but I think (maybe) I will be back to try it again ... not sure just yet! Don't do this under-trained, don't underestimate it - but do it! Only slight gripe - for us slower ones at the back, no mars bars or jelly babies or anything at the feed stations. I could have married the wonderful man at Waunfawr handing out boiled sweets though! Date of review: October 27, 2008
In short: good course, good goody bag, good atmosphere ... In full: A good course with a good atmosphere most of the way round. Nice clear kilometre markers and overall an enjoyable race. Only down-side was a big queue to collect the goody bags - took me the best part of 20 minutes - but that wasn't a major problem. Date of review: September 22, 2008
In short: first marathon, overall good ... but ..... In full: ...but, the Expo was a nightmare, trying to get there in time was impossible and added heaps of stress only to find I could actually pick up numbers etc. on race morning. Phew. Race was good, nice and flat, reasonably scenic - but not at all what I was expecting. I was looking for a 'city' race with a 'city' feel, and I simply didn't get it from Edinburgh. Once I'd realised that and changed my expectations, I enjoyed it.
Yes, there were big queues at the end for the buses, but I found the queues moved quickly and actually didn't take that long to get through, despite looking daunting.
Loved the finish - suddenly got that 'big city' buzz and was hit was the emotion which had been lacking on the rest of the course.
Good volunteers, plenty of drinks etc - overall, thanks Edinburgh. Date of review: May 28, 2008
In short: tough, but great, and a big PB for me! In full: a good course (if slightly dull in places!) but off road, traffic free, and not too hilly. Great atmosphere amongst the runners, not many spectators but that doesn't matter too much. Free massage much appreciated! Only minor gripe was the 180 degree turning point with a water station on it - quite tricky to turn, grab water and keep going. Wind made it tough ... but so rewarding! Date of review: March 3, 2008
In short: I enjoyed it ... but there's work to be done! In full: It was a good day. I enhoyed it. But:
start zones a shambles. But, let's face it, surely people should have the sense to put themselves into their correct time zones rather than slavishly follow their (wrong) coloured race numbers? Near the back, the problems didn't seem too bad, not sure what it was like at the front.
Goody bag. Don't know, didn't get one. Let's just not bother, they were rubbish last year and, apparently, rubbish this year.
and it's expensive!!
Good points though - I really liked the course, much better than last year, yes the cobbles in Queen Square were uncomfortable, but the crowds there were fabulous. Good atmosphere most of the way round, actually.
But, please, please, please stop adding more runners and cater for those you've already got!! Date of review: September 10, 2007