In short: Excellent XC race, great value, perfectly organised, great fun! In full: Some people pay £40 to run around 'hard man' events that have a scary puddle in the middle. If any of them ran this, they would probably finish at the back - albeit £29 better off!
This is how races should be - brilliant value, perfectly organised and friendly. Date of review: October 28, 2012
In short: Flat, but awkward and dull In full: It will always be a fast course in this area, it is flat or gently rolling at most. A lot of this benefit is cancelled out by a very awkward course, there are lots of twists and turns and narrow winding paths and pavements where overtaking can be difficult. There are also countless curbs to hop up and down and the most awkward part of the course is the last 2-3 miles where it is very hard to maintain any momentum. The marshals were great though, along with the general organisation and facilities. My only gripe here is water in cups and not bottles, this is not a cheap race and there's not really any excuse. I also measured the course a tad long at 26.44, as did everyone else I asked.... Date of review: October 22, 2012
In short: Leg-smashingly perfect. The most fun I've had in any event ever. In full: This race is designed to be tough and it excels! This is not a corporate pretender 'hard man' event, this is 20.5 miles of the real thing - as nature intended, with stunning views to match.
The organisation is impressive and flawless, so much so I believe they may have even been responsible for arranging the glorious sunshine.
It's the people that make this race truly special, the countless grinning marshals, bagpipe players, bands, drummers, banners, signs, amazing support, and silly comments nailed to trees. A sense of humour flows from every pore of this race.
It would also seem that every jelly baby in the UK was sent to Devon and handed out by every marshal and grinning kid all the way around. I swear I finished the race heavier than when I started! :-)
When you do finally finish (I didn't want to) you get a great technical T-shirt and the option of getting hosed down by the fire brigade or running straight into the sea.
Oh, and the icing on the cake was an individual handmade cupcake iced with the number '25' to mark the anniversary of this event. Almost too good to eat I thought as I stuffed it into my face whilst running into the sea....
In short: 7 miles up, 3 miles down. Deceptively fast course. In full: My theory is hilly courses are faster than flat ones, and this course gave me a good PB - although it hurt, a lot. Tough first 7 miles which can be run hard because the last 3 are all downhill bar a couple of small hills in the last mile. Great organisation, super friendly, yummy cakes. Well done Lytchett Striders. Date of review: February 20, 2012
In short: Excellent course, great scenery, bumpy with a fast finish In full: Excellent value, free coffee, hotdog and wispa bar after the race most welcome! Self service water was a bit awkward and in short supply, and registration was chaotic with just one desk. The course more than makes up for these usual issues - I'll get there earlier next year. Some very grumpy and reckless local car drivers near the finish area!! Date of review: January 9, 2012
In short: Very enjoyable event, good starting location In full: I also expected this to be a bit of a disaster but am happy to eat humble pie. It was a very enjoyable race with a great atmosphere and quite a fast varied course. The pavements are undulating in places, but the marshalling was top notch (I also ran in the road for the worst parts.) The latter part of the course is very picturesque and the variety and town and country made it much more interesting. Loads of toilets at the start - there were many more within the football ground for those who didn't just join the first queue! One big complaint - from about mile 3 the mile markers were about a quarter mile out, and the course is short by about a tenth of a mile. Get it measured properly and this will be a top event. The stadium is a great starting location for spectators as well. Date of review: March 31, 2011
In short: A rollercoaster tour of the countryside In full: This is another great cross country race in the Dorset area with stunning views. Very well organised with a unique finish running into a restored railway station offering loads of character and a good vantage point for spectators. Forget 'hell runners' and other corporate pretenders - just run this along with The Beast and do a real challenge! Date of review: November 1, 2010
In short: Stunning off-road rollercoaster of a run. In full: Great marshalls, free parking, brilliant atmosphere at the finish. Not to mention the course which throws everything at you. This has to be one of the best XC races around and is worth every black toenail! ;-)
In short: Well organised small-field event In full: My first go at this local 10K. The hills didn't disappoint, especially back up them into the wind! Very well marshalled and organised no-hassle event. Slightly small field today - maybe because North Dorset village marathon on same day? I also recorded the distance as short at 9.83km and a friend had 9.75km. Date of review: May 3, 2010