In short: A great race - glad to see it back In full: I really enjoyed the race and echo what everybody else has been saying about marshals etc. I am a TRAC member, so I guess I am biased but on a wet and potentially manky day I salute those who were out on the course for over 4 hours, at least us runners were moving about a bit.
On a personal note, I would like to thank Steve from Tunbridge Wells Harriers who ran the race with me and helped me to a PB time I never thought possible. You were great company and kept me going when I was flagging.
Finally, the usual old story, toilets. Experience has taught me that there are two things certain about every race ever organised. (a) folk will moan about toilets (b) folk won't read their race instructions fully. I used the gents near the race start, ten minutes before the start, and was in and out in less than a minute. There were approximately ten ladies outside their loo at that time.
I am TRAC treasurer this year and I was stunned at the cost of portaloo hire. The four at HQ plus a bank of urinals cost £552 to hire including delivery. That is about £1.25 per runner, nearly 10% of your entry fee. Getting the balance right between facilities laid on, goody bag contents, race entry fee etc is very difficult and to be honest I think it was about bang on. Date of review: March 7, 2012
In short: Excellent flat race In full: This is the third time I have run this race. The first time was in 2007 when there were 1395 finishers, this time there were 1920 more than a third up. I think some of the valid points made by other runners are due to that level of increase and could have been avoided by having a fixed cut off number, say 2000, and taking no entries on the day. That was what Tunbridge Wells did and made the event easier to manage.
HOWEVER Having said that, this was a great race, well marshalled, enthusiastic support, plenty of water stations and two sponge stations which were greatly appreciated. A special mention needs to be given to the youngsters manning the baggage store who did a fantastic job both lodging and retrieving. I will be back again next year and can thoroughly recommend this race. Date of review: March 28, 2011
In short: Much improved from last two years In full: Do the people of Lydd want this race and do any of them even know it is happening? Organisation, marshals, water stations etc were far better than 2009 and 2010 when I did my last two races here. The downside was that there was virtually no support at all apart from friends and relatives at the start and finish. Out on the course I think I must have counted about a dozen (and I am being generous) spectators including one small boy standing at his front gate cheering everybody on.
As I understand it ftom previous years some of the proceeds of this race go to the local Mayor's charity appeal. Well, to be blunt, the people of Lydd really need to get off their derrieres and give this race more support. This has the potential to be a good race, it is fast, flat and perfect PB material, The organisation is getting there. The car park exit conflicting with runners still finishing was a bit of a pain and could have been reduced by giving a cut-off time and telling folk that they could not get out of the car park until at least two hours after the race started, by that time the spread out runners could have been accommodated alongside cars going out.
All told far better, I got a PB by 5 minutes, so I am happy and will be back. Date of review: March 13, 2011
In short: Excellent race In full: I really enjoyed this race. After tackling Spring Hill last week at Tunbridge Wells the hill in the park falls more into the short sharp slope category and you do get a couple of really good downhill stretches to compensate for it. The organisation and marshals were very good and the fact that the whole run was inside the park made it totally traffic free. I got a PB on this one, so all told very happy and will be back next year. Date of review: March 7, 2011
In short: Brilliant race, excellent organisation, great value for money In full: This is the first time I have run TW and it won't be the last. The organisation was faultless, loads of marshals, plenty of water stations well manned, lots of road closures resulting in an excellent traffic free experience. The goody bag at the end was the best I have ever had and that was in addition to a T shirt and a medal. The locals were fantastic in their support, very welcoming, very vocal and my own special thanks go to a local runner whose namre unfortunately I did not get who hopped into my car and directed me to Race HQ when I got hopelessly lost on my way there. Finally, and this was the icing on the cake for me, it was a big surprise to find Dame Kelly Holmes handing out the medals at the end, how many races can claim that. Like the Terminator, I'll be back. Date of review: February 27, 2011
In short: Tough given the weather and the hills In full: This is the first time I have run this race. The last couple of Km are one long charge downhill to the finish, apart from the last couple of hundred metres. To pay for that you have a long slow slog uphill from halfway to about 7km. I agree with the comments about the bag but I don't know where they went to pay 6 quid for a cup of tea and a piece of cake. My wife and I had 2 cups of tea at 75p each in the tearoom before the race. This was my worst ever 10k time but I will definitely be back next year. Date of review: July 12, 2010
In short: Excellent but demanding In full: This is a great race, superb organisation, very unforgiving when it is hot (like this one), but I love it, Will definitely be back next year. Top marks for laying on 5 water stations, other organisers take note! Date of review: May 24, 2010
In short: A good race with plenty of PB potential In full: I don't know what race Kev Hall was in but it didn't match my experience. I found there were enough marshals who in the main were very encouraging, in fact I thanked a number of them as I passed. All junctions and places where we could have gone wrong were properly marshalled. I arrived at 10am and a marshal told me car park was full and described where to go. Anyone who drives should know that SINGLE yellow lines mean you can park freely on a Sunday and I found a space a few hundred yards from the school. All told I found this a well organised race which I enjoyed, even if I didn't enjoy my time.
In case anybody thinks this is a "plant", I am not a member of Invicta and have no connection with the organisers. Date of review: January 31, 2010