In short: A few things they could improve on but don't regret running In full: This was my third marathon, the others were Paris and London so seems a little unfair comparing it to those (they were ace).
Things I liked:
Some great support in the city and near the end. They really helped me burn through the last sections.
Massive section at the finish for collecting medals and relaxing. Was good to not be stepping on each other.
Plenty of loos at the beginning if you moved around the start area - people did seem to huddle at the same ones.
Things I didn't like. No isotonic drinks. I never train with gels but i took them anyway. They weren't too bad but I had to wash them down with tepid water from the stations - in that heat tepid water was not relieving.
Massive sections with little or no supporters, maybe noticed that even more in this weather.
Relay runners! Cutting you up, fresh legged and some acting like we were inconveniencing them by taking up space.
A stupid start time for this season. I know the organisers can't control the weather - but this isn't the first year it's been a scorcher but they seem determined to go with a silly late morning start time. If it starts earlier - people will just have to arrive earlier. Other races manage to sell out which have early start times.
Got a little narrow in places - very penned in at the end and was difficulty to get past people courteously.
I would consider doing it again if they got a sports drink sponsor and considered the earlier start time. I will focus on some other races while I see what they change for next year. Date of review: May 28, 2012
In short: I keep coming back In full: This was my third time running the Reading Half. The track is really good, you see a lot of lovely Reading town centre and the surrounding area. It only has two hills you really notice but each year I set a better time so I can't complain about those!
The organisation is second to none, any faults with space just highlight the event is that popular it's going to be hard fitting that many people in that much space. But as soon as you pass the start line then the groups split and it feels fine.
You get a lot of support going around, from additional water stations (and a beer one!) to the "unofficial" jelly baby stops, hats off to the people of Reading for really giving you the motivation to give that extra 10%.
The ending of the race is an interesting mix, what I have come to term "death highway" which is a quiet (compared to being in the town) run along the motorway at around mile 11 to seeing the stadium and then turning away for another mile slog. But the end, in the stadium, is fantastic, on a nice bit of running track where the crowds are going wild.
I would whole heartily recommend this race to anyone from those looking to dip a toe into this distance, to people who use it as a race pace test before Paris / London / Brighton marathons. Date of review: April 2, 2012
In short: Locals hosing down hot runners, Brilliant In full: Was my second race and it was a toughie! I'm sure there are plenty on here who will tell you "Pah, you're making mountains out of mole hills" but I struggled with the ups and downs. Was a great race, nice town, well marshalled and a cute medal. I'd recommend it for anyone who has just started racing, just remember to pace yourself on the hills, if your legs are tired from pushing yourself the 1 mile farmers field followed by 300 metre uphill finish will make you feel like dick dastardly has put glue on the bottom of your trainers. Date of review: June 29, 2008
In short: Good for a run and some shopping! In full: This was my first race, I was really happy with how well it was organised, everything was clearly marked out and all the lucozade you could drink! Date of review: June 17, 2008