In short: Excellent Event Yet Again! In full: This was my 4th Bournemouth Bay Half Marathon (sorry could only find the 10K event on here to leave feedback).
This event is always extrememly well organised with so much happening on the day. I like how the races are staggered so there are plenty of people on the course at once.
As the event continues to grow, the organisers must have a look at the start as the line up for the half (and the 10k by the look of it) is getting extremely congested along the narrow stretch of promenade by the pier.
That aside, the atmosphere is great, the weather always seems to be perfect and value is incredible.
I'll be back next year. Date of review: April 2, 2012
In short: Even The Rain Couldn't Spoil It! In full: Massive thanks to the organisers and volunteers at the Berkhamsted Half. So many gave up their Sunday morning to stand in the pouring rain and do at great job at organising this wonderful event.
There were a couple of negatives first off. The downhill finish was great but it was very tight with the traffic trying to come up the hill and there were a few of us trying to get through a gap of a few feet whislt negotiating a fast burst to the line. Could have been a little dangerous. The majority of the route shared with traffic was fine though.
Also, a few people complained about the goodie bag at the end. I'm not overly fussed as I do the race for the experience but it was a little light.
The positives far outweigh the above though. Firstly, the route was lovely, I am so glad that I chose this event over the MK Half, the views were beautiful, much nicer than concrete town.
The marshals were great, enthusiastic and upbeat despite the weather and that can also be said of the clutches of locals dotted around the route.
The hills were a great challenge with plenty of ups and downs to make it interesting too.
I would definitely do this event again and shall be highly recommending it to my fellow club members (many of whom stopped off at MK). Date of review: March 5, 2012
In short: Surely one of the most beautiful marathons in England. In full: What a lovely setting for a great challenge! I am a big fan of off road and rural races so this hit the spot for my 4th marathon (the other three being London so a nice change for this distance).
The terrain was tough and the ups and downs were very challenging, especially in the latter stages but if we wanted tarmac we would have entered a road race.
I'll start with the negatives (sorry horrible word because they are not negative, they are suggestions). The mile 24 marker, although a guide was cruely placed...I thought my garmin was out and I had an extra half mile to go. The cost has been mentioned and it was a little steep considering as basic t shirt and medal. Remember we had to pay an extra £3 to park as well. Also as mentioned, an extra water station in the last few miles would have been most welcome (especially as this was the quietest stretch and the part where runners need the most encoragement to get to the line.
Now the positives... The location was out of this world, you cannot beat the scenery and this was surely the most beautiful the England has to offer. The organisation was pretty good with a laid back start and plenty of support from the marshals and army cadets. I didn't mind doing the peninsular twice, it was a nice part of the course. I will highly reccommend this event. Date of review: November 8, 2011
In short: Absolutely Brilliant In full: My first Ridgeway and I loved it! A lot of my fellow club members from Northampton Road Runners have done this event before and talked very highly of it. We had about 20 members there on Sunday so it certainly shows the popularity from our crew.
The organisation was spot on with loads of parking and good facilities.
The marshals were very friendly and encouraging (special mention to the enthusiastic younger helpers too).
The course was stunning and had everything! Ok, it was a little congested at the start but once we passed that lane, the climb onto the Ridgeway was a lovely challenge and the views at the top were amazing. The final decent through the woods was exhilarating too and then a fast finish with plenty of support dotted around.
Oh and then to cap it all, a great technical t-shirt (I wasn't expecting that).
In short: My Home Town Race In full: Being born and bred in Northampton, I am very proud to have such a great event in the town. So many people have been negative about the town for a number of years because the town hasn't progress into a big city. Do you know what, I actually really like that. This event helps to put the town on the map and it is great to see so many people traveling from afar to take part. It would be nice for the organisers to add a half marathon option soon too. I would love to see the streets more rammed with supporters throughout the route too.
Well done to the organisers, everything went like clockwork.
Looking forward to next year again. Date of review: October 2, 2011
In short: A Quality Event, Everyone Must Try This In full: The Colworth Challenge always seems to fall on a weekend when I'm away but everyone at my club, Northampton Road Runners, raves about it. This year I thought I better go and see what all the fuss is about.
Friday's 5 miler was a single lap route which went through some beautiful woodland trails and ended with a mainly downhill stretch, even the rain couldn't dampen anyone's spirits.
Saturday 8.1 distance was much tougher, this was a real challenge with miles of tractor grooves to dodge but the sense of achievement at the end was excellent.
Sunday's Half was made all the more challenging by temperature rising to 28 degree. The route is two lap extended route of the 5 mile race and we were all very thankful of the shaded woodland for a couple of miles at the end of each lap.
The extras that make this challenge so wonderful are the great marshals and volunteers that are really enthusiastic for the whole weekend.
The mementos are great too, Friday is a medal, Saturday was a snood and Sunday a t shirt but you also get a trophy for completing the whole challenge.
Personally I didn't camp but our contingent that did swear by it and they will all be back next year.
Thanks very much to Colworth Striders for a great event. Date of review: June 27, 2011