In short: Two tough hills, but they're over with quickly In full: Enjoyable, well-organised race catering for beginner and club athletes alike. Two challenging hills but they're not too long, and they're in the first half so down hill on the return. Plenty of parking next to the start, reasonable crowds in the town and a nice "countryside" thorough the grounds of Charterhouse School Date of review: May 21, 2013
In short: well organised road race with a friendly atmosphere In full: well marshalled - and it needs to be as you're sometimes shoulder to shoulder with cars - and slickly organised popular mid-week race series. Date of review: July 6, 2011
In short: Well-organised evening 10k In full: despite the course feeling as if it's mostly a gentle uphill, this is a good first-timer's course and has potential for a PB for the more experienced runner. Date of review: August 6, 2010
In short: The ultimate slime-fest In full: Tough, filthy, pouring rain, treacherous underfoot, near-vertical mud slides. Well organised, great atmoshpere, astonishing numbers (1200!), lots of marshals and first aid help, well-stocked goody bag, free quality T-shirt.
A race of extremes, definitely for the brave-hearted, providing a challenge for hard-core trail runners, but equally approachable by a relatively fit novice.
Sign me up for next year..... Date of review: November 23, 2009
In short: All the pain of a marathon condensed into just ten miles of hills and swamp - marvellous In full: Having seen the details of this race on the web, it looked like great fun, and having run my first half marathon at Reading in April, I figured that I could cover the distance.
Little did I know.
The course is 10.5 miles of hilly cross-country, and is quite a challenge in its own right. Add the stretches of bog, ditch, mud, water, and temperatures in the mid-20s C and it takes on a new dimension. The first third of the course stretches the field out pretty quickly. The middle third saps your energy and introduces you to the first serious water, and then the final third is where you really get down and dirty.
I have never had so much fun in a race. Whilst not for the faint-hearted, this race is within the grasp of anyone who runs regularly, and there's a sense of achievement upon finishing that I doubt many races can offer.
I am definitely doing this race again, and I will be at Bordon in the Autumn.
Top marks to the organisers for devising such a challenging course and their first-class organisation. Lots of marshalls around the course, a great atmosphere, water stations at 5, 11 and 17k, and a goodie bag (but no medal) with a cool Turbo-X running T-shirt.
In short: The scenery could be better In full: Don't opt for this race if you like the drink in your surroundings as much as the water because Reading is not built to please. It is a well-organised race - allegedly the third largest in the UK - and it is mostly flat, or gentle slopes.
With over 16,000 runners the logistics have to be good, and I must say that everything worked well for me. As you might expect the queues for toilets were lengthy enough that you have to plan ahead, and the travel arrangements mean that you must arrive well in advance, but I'd say that the organisers did a good job in coordinating so many runners and their supporters.
The course starts near the M4, close to Rading FC's impressive stadium, and loops around the town before finishing in the stadium itself. I was impressed by the level of support around almost the whole course. The course itself is runner-friendly, completely traffic free, and has only two hills worthy of the name. Miles 11 and 12 are along a gently-rising straight stretch of dual carriageway, and many runners flag at that point - me included. THe final twist is a half-mile detour away from the finish just before you reach the stadium. The finish in the stadium is a nice touch.
Generous goodie-bag afterwards, space-blankets, free massage, plus plenty of free water, lucozade sport, etc. There is also excellent first aid provision around the whole course.
If only the scenery was more attractive! Date of review: March 30, 2009
In short: Go fur it In full: The most fun you'll ever have in a race. Honestly.
The scenery is fantastic, the course is mostly flat (apart from steps - not easy with your gorilla face on), the cameraderie is like no other race, though it's deceptively hard work. But as this is all about having a good time and raising cash for a truly worthwhile cause (it's easy to reach the minimum sponsorship total because people are so supportive of the Gorilla Organisation) - enjoy yourself and walk and amuse tourists when you need to rest or cool down.
Serious runners and fun runners alike - it's a great race. Date of review: October 18, 2008