In short: A very individual race - tough and hilly but thoroughly enjoyable In full: Well done to the team for another great race. A slightly different route to last year, but still great fun. Date of review: July 21, 2013
In short: Nice sized field, supportive atmosphere, interesting course. Great organisation. In full: This is everything I want from a half, and as long as you don't favour the massive corporate-type events, I'd be amazed if you didn't think so too. Date of review: March 12, 2013
In short: My perfect half In full: I'd repeat all the comments made by other reviewers about the achievement of the organisers in making this such a special race at the first time of asking. Whoever thought of using the route for a race also deserves credit - I loved it.
In terms of the difficulty, I think it's one of those courses where, if you're feeling strong and running well, you might not see it as tough at all. But if you're not feeling so good and have under-trained (as I was), there seem to be far more ups than downs. I'm not sure a pb is out of the question. Date of review: March 12, 2012
In short: Challenging, but worth the pain for the views and the atmosphere In full: I felt like I needed something different, and this event truly delivered. The 'Soapbox' part of the event name comes from the fact that the race features as part of a soapbox derby event, held on a hillside in Richards Castle (nr. Ludlow). As a result, you're surrounded by the carnival atmosphere generated by that event, and have the thrills and spills of the soapbox derby itself to entertain you before and after the race. 'Spectacular' is fully justified by the views at the start/finish into the West of England, and into Wales at a couple of points along the route. The course itself is challenging, and mostly along trails and fields. There's reference somewhere to the fact that it's aimed at club runners but there was no sense of elitism at all, and the range of ages amongst the finishers was wide. As someone who normally runs road-based flattish events, this was just the refreshing changed I needed.
In short: Exceptional In full: A very attractive route, and the atmosphere is great. The organisers had everything spot on and seemed as though they were enjoying the day too. Having read previous comments about the hill at the end, I was ready for that, and it didn't seem too bad. I did struggle a bit with the section immediately before that where you are on a winding gravel path along the side of a lake. Overall, I was pleased with my time though, so it's not a slow course. Date of review: June 21, 2010