In short: Enjoyed the iconic Aintree Racecourse setting and perfect sunny weather, but the organisation let it down (see below)... In full: The organisational problems can be easily solved if only they are recognised, so I am trying to be helpful with this list, rather than just complaining - so here goes :
1. online entries were still available until Thursday night, so a note on the website could have stated whether numbers would be posted so late, or preferably held at the registration desk to avoid uncertainty of the post.
2. the charity donation collectors caused a bottleneck and delays at the course entrance, leading to a 15-minute traffic jam on the approach road outside. They could instead have been in the car park to collect after parking.
3. we were left to organise our own parking, so some selfish idiots blocked other cars in.
4. the race start was delayed by 10 minutes because a taxi was parked on the course - the weather today was great, but imagine if it had been cold and wet. Date of review: October 2, 2016
In short: Picturesque, undulating country lane course, well organised and friendly. Under 200 runners is enough for a nice atmosphere but not too many to overwhelm the quaintness of it all. Plus free food, great value and a wonderful experience all round. In full: Bit of a positive rant now...
How I wish there were still a lot more of this type of race surviving, but sadly, too many have disappeared and not enough similar new ones are taking their place. This race proves that for £10 entry it is possible to organise a great event without bouncy castles, gym style warmups, a dj, free massage, adverts of sides of buses, multiple road closures, police involvement etc. etc. all of which just doubles the cost and the hassle. Bring back all the little primary schools, scout groups etc organising lots of small scale races on interesting courses - as used to happen before it all became so much hassle they all gave up and left it to the profiteering professional organisers to take it over and spoil the simple pleasures. Date of review: March 20, 2016
In short: Lovely scenic route around canals and lakes made up for high price and some poor organisation eg. no mile markers. In full: Really enjoyed the route with interesting twists and turns, and didn't even mind it being 2 laps, but a major mistake by the organisers was NO MILE MARKERS. Unbelievable. The 10k taking place at the same time had distance markers so why couldn't we ? Also don't know how the £20 fee is justified - if some of it went on the chip timing then runners are just paying to make the organisers life easier, in that they don't have to write down finishers munbers and times. Date of review: April 3, 2011
In short: Wonderful scenery and a great off-road challenge on rocky paths and muddy fields. In full: Overall a brilliant race that I would recommend to anyone. Ideal weather this year for the lovely views of the reservoirs and hills. The long climb right at the start for over a mile ensured that the later, smaller hills were a challenge on tired legs. Interesting variety of stuff in the goody bag and top quality vest almost made me feel OK about the £20 fee, but why no discount for attached club runners ? Main gripe was with some other runners who barged past on narrow, slippery paths or downhill rocky terrain, which was dangerous. Come on you macho guys, grow up - do those few seconds really matter when you could injure someone ? Date of review: October 2, 2010