In short: Another Great Race In full: I have done this twice now and I think its a great race. The course was obviously different this year, I think it made it slightly slower but also cut out the flood zones around caldecotte lake. The gel, sports drink and water stations were well planned out and at just the right distances. The stadium finish is awesome and we all benefited for the use of all of its facilities this year.. Date of review: May 7, 2013
In short: Pulled out at halfway In full: I've done this race twice before and have enjoyed it both times.
On arrival to the start there was a sign saying you will get wet feet, I've no problem with running through puddles.
I turned up in trainers with quite deep studs, when I paid my entrance fee I asked the registration guy would I be ok and he said no problem. He said it wasn't appropriate for spikes because it ran on a road for part.
At the start line I noticed that quite a few people who must have been taking part in the challenge were nursing cuts and bruises from the previous days.
There was absolutely no race briefing and no warnings about the course. I was at the front and all I heard was a very quiet 3 2 1 go!
The first 4 miles were slippy but no big problems, then I found even walking almost impossible on the downhill descent. The conditions here were hard earth with a very slippery top layer. I nearly fell over about 5 times on that downhill section. Some people were able to overtake me so they must have had deeper studs than me.
After a few more slips approaching the golf course I decided it would be better off if I called it quits at that point and got out safe with all my bones in tact.
Might have saved me £ 15 and a lot of bother if a more accurate description of the course was given before entry. I would do this race again, but only in good ground conditions or with deep studded trainers.
In short: Great Race in Challenging Conditions In full: I think the weather was a challenge, but I actually enjoyed running in the rain. It would have been much worse for me if the sun had been out and dehydrating temperatures.
The water, lucozade and gels were also perfectly timed (at london it feels they are too often so you forget to take them) at just the right points in the race.
I've done quite a few marathons now and I've only had a space blanket at London, so I didn't expect to have one at the finish. I was quite impressed with the goody bag, but was more happy to have finished.
I was towards the front so was lucky enough to have a lead bike, (this wasn't just for the leader - the first few got them) which was a great help.
Marshalls were great and lots of supporters took refuge under the underpasses. The course profile did show the hill up to the centre, but I thought the way the course navigated it was superb and allowed for a fast downhill finish.
Looking forward to doing this race again.. Date of review: June 22, 2012
In short: Good Race In full: I enjoyed this race, the first time I have run the course. The marshalls were well placed and the two water stops were very much appreciated. The goody bag wasn't very inspiring, but the entry was a few quid cheaper than a typical 10k. The only recommendations I would make are more timely results (48 hours after and still nothing) and looking at the finish. The last few hundred metres are a bit tight and you have no idea when the finish is coming (ie no count downs in metres to finish). I was in a tight race so didn't know when I should give a final kick (if there was even space to pass). Well done to the organisers and hopefully you raised some good money for the school. Date of review: June 19, 2012
In short: Nice race In full: This is a special race for me and despite the hills I find myself coming back year after year.
Found it tough this year in the wind, but was still quite a fast time.
I think two water stations would improve the race as if you miss the hands held out its quite a long way to go without getting water. More people handing out chips and numbers would also help and maybe some tables set out for putting your number on.
Thanks Ampthill and Flitwick Flyers for putting on a great race. Date of review: April 16, 2012
In short: Good Race In full: Was as good as the previous years. Running out of safety pins was unwelcome, but just mean't I had to spend ten times as long looking for my pictures because my number fell off. Think in previous years there was sponges or more water stations. 10k's are intense, so I think 2 or 3 water stations would be good to cool you down / make sure your hydrated. Date of review: April 22, 2010
In short: Potential to be great, but needs more work. In full: I'm not sure who actually organises this, I suspect its the company you sent your entry to. I think this corporate approach has been to maximise profits rather than have a great race.
Good: Water Bottles Chip Timing Location for start
Bad: Too many tight corners. Hard to have a finish line sprint because of the final zig zag 100m before the end. Lack of food at finish. Labelling it as flat and fast. Marshalls did not generally wear anything to identify themselves.
Whoever decided to set the 10k off 2 mins before the half marathon is nuts. The 10k runners couldn't focus on their race and the half marathon runners had to weave in and out. I saw someone take a tumble and its purely down to the organisers incompetence.
There wasn't much of a countdown to the 10k / half marathon split. I saw a runner who missed the split and carried on for another mile or so on the half marathon course. In the heat of a run you don't always see the signs.
Would recommend it becomes less corporate and more enthusiastic and organised by club.
In short: Good day out for the family In full: I had a great time doing this race. I very much enjoyed the 3 lap course because it meant that there was always something going on and people to overtake. The temperature at the start was almost perfect for running. It might be an idea to negotiate a slightly discounted family entry (ie 1 runner, 1 adult and 2 kids) if Whipsnade would consider it.. Chip timing would work well on a 3 lap course and would hopefully allow results to be published quicker Date of review: June 27, 2009
In short: Excellent race with great supporters In full: Had a great time this year, made special by the supporters along the route. I would recommend the organisers consider giving water bottles as even with the stations there are times when you would like to take water between stations. I would happily pay a premium in future races for this. The hills are a constant challenge and shouldn't be underestimated. I disrespected them and they bit me back.. Date of review: June 27, 2009
In short: Excellent race in good settings In full: Had a good time on the day (only did the half), lots of water stations which were very much appreciated. I'd recommend to the organisers that they put some more effort into the website, ie include course maps and other details.. Date of review: June 27, 2009