In short: Great race - nice course and well organised In full: Well done to all at Stratford AC for getting this on, and keeping up the communication before the race. This was my second time running this race, and although I was slower than last year, it was nice to get out and do the distance, in nice countryside, and the nearest race to my house! As with last year it was the steady hill at around 9-10k that got me, after dealing with the early uphills. Highly recommended. Date of review: January 18, 2010
In short: Beautiful course - Mind those hills! In full: I chose Loch Ness for my first marathon, as I preferred the thought of a scenic route, rather than a city route. I wasn't disappointed. The views were stunning from the start, which feels like the middle of nowhere. Although I finished slightly slower than my target at 4:47, I had a great time and the cameraderie amongst the runners was great. I wasn't affected by the main bus delays, getting the bus from Drumnadrochit. The bus struggled up the hills but made it with the encouragment of 70 odd runners in the back! We were the first at the start so were able to relax and partake of the coffee provided. For future reference, I would have run the first half a bit slower, leaving a bit more for the slog between 17&21. Once up there I couldn't get my pace back up, but I kept going at a slower pace, and was delighted to finish my first marathon with a good stadium finish. Goody bag was light of stuff with 2 heavy tins of soup! T-shirt great, and it was great to be able to take photos on the winners podium, with family. Date of review: October 6, 2009
In short: Nice race - mind those hills! In full: Nice race for a hot Sunday morning - maybe the 11am start was a bit late in the weather. The link to the carnival and fair was nice. The children's challenge was very good - my 8 year old had a good go. The whole course is undulating with a long slope towards the end - hard work for someone who doesn't have any hills near home to train on! Overall - well done to all involved in organisation and all finishers in the heat! Date of review: June 29, 2009
In short: Great race despite the foul weather In full: Well done to all the organisers and vlunteers for standing around in the rain ensuring that us runners could have fun! This is a really good route, although the slight uphill gradient in the middle may prevent distance PBs, but there's always the course PB to go for which I beat by 4 minutes! I'm not sure the start in Warwick Castle worked perfectly - no opportunity to find a realistic starting point led to fast and slow runners in the wrong places. Coach return to Warwick was very useful as my wife didn't really want to bring the kids to the finish in the pouring rain. Date of review: June 8, 2009
In short: Excellent Race - Pretty route and well organised In full: This is a really good race, and really enjoyable for my first half-marathon. The start could be a bit more organised. It was hard to get through the crowds to get onto the road and I ended up a lot further back than I wanted, leading to a slowish first mile getting stuck in the pack.
Provision of refreshments (water, sport drinks and sponges) was excellent, at all the right points. Finish was great, although they could have cleared the finish area a bit quicker at times.
The route is really nice, and I didn't even mind the Greenway, having used it for training a number of times! At least I know the landmarks along there to keep me going to the end! Date of review: April 29, 2009
In short: Great race - well organised and marshalled In full: Well done to all involved. Course was well signposted and marshalled, with nice run-in and finishing area. Route is very good, allowing consistent good pace, aside from the hills between 2 and 4k. Toilets at the start could do with better signage. There was a urinal hut (great idea) for men, with no queue, but big queues (inc men) for the normal toilets. Date of review: April 6, 2009
In short: Well run race, great course In full: This was my first time entering this race (the nearest possible to my house!). It is really well organised over a nice course. The steady hill between 9 and 11k gave me more trouble than the earlier hill, which I had been warned about. Managed to do pb as first time over this distance, but also managed a pretty decent 10k split. Now, if I can keep it up for another 10k, the Stratford half marathon should be OK! Date of review: January 19, 2009