In short: Looking forward to next year! In full: Today was my first time doing the Tonbridge Half, and I already plan to make it a regular on my race calendar, alongside the Tunbridge Wells Half. A challenging course with plenty of climbs, but I really enjoyed the layout of the course--I swear the last three miles (mentally) went by the quickest of any half I've done. Great marshalls and community support. Date of review: September 23, 2012
In short: My favourite half! In full: This was my third year in a row doing the TW Half, and it continues to be my absolute favourite! The only negative I can come up with about today was running out of goody bags at the end (all I cared about was water which I assume would have been inside),and people in the hall gave me snacks which would have been inside (I came in at 2:18 to no bags--I came in 3 and 7 minutes slower in the past two years and never had any issue with the post-race bag). I put a '2' for PB potential purely because it is a tough course, but I manage to PR on it every year somehow! I'll continue to come back, as this is without a doubt the best race I do every year. Love the crowd and community support...even if there are some annoyed drivers in the approach to Spring Hill. Date of review: February 26, 2012
In short: Enjoyable for an out-of-towner In full: Came up from London for the half, and at this point, would intend to do it again next year. I've done four different halfs, and would rank this as my second favourite (behind only Tunbridge Wells, which takes the cake in community support). I had no problems with congestion at the start/finish, but that's probably because I was far back in the field (finished just over the 2:30 mark). Felt pretty uninspired for the first few miles in the city streets, but enjoyed the parks.
While I think the course was beginner friendly, if you're slower and don't have friends/family along cheering for you, I'd be prepared for minimal crowd support. Although there were some awesome people along the promenade for the final three miles--particularly the group with pom-poms!
I enjoyed my goody bag--it had what I needed (toilet paper! water! sports drink!) and none of what I didn't. Also really enjoyed my medal and shirt, even if I was initially disappointed about it being too big, I really like the design/color.
Am looking forward to returning to the city for the marathon in October, and maybe coming up for the Mersey Tunnel run as well. Date of review: March 30, 2011
In short: Another great time! In full: This was my second year doing this race, and once again, it was a fantastic time! Last year's race was a great experience despite the horrible weather (including a PR), and I was hoping it would be as good this year (the experience I mean; wasn't wishing for the rain again!)...and it was! I even PR'ed again! I'm definitely hoping to keep this race part of my yearly schedule. I'm a slow runner, but there's still great support out there, even at the back of the pack. While I liked the energy drink last year, I enjoyed not having to carry that around this year and getting the gel instead. I do wish the gel hadn't already been opened for me though, as I would've liked to hold onto it a bit longer.
My only slight disappointment was that my shirt ended up too small (I picked up the same size as last year--I love the way last year's fits--and despite them being labelled the same size, this year's is cut smaller). My fault for not even considering trying it on though. Date of review: March 24, 2011
In short: It's been over 12 hours since the start, and I'm still on a high from it all! In full: What to say that hasn't already been said? After my first half last autumn, the first words out of my mouth were "never again!" After today, the first words were "who can I call and tell them how amazing this was?!"
Couldn't see much of the scenery in the first few miles, thanks to the cloud cover, but thought about how gorgeous it must be at other times. As the clouds lifted a bit I was able to really appreciate the view though.
I don't know if the insane weather actually made this more enjoyable and added to the camaraderie, but I found everyone very friendly and encouraging. Including the runners who were heading home as I was running to the finish!
I was at the back of the pack, but still felt supported throughout the entire race. To have people cheering out of their cars as they went by was a nice boost. (Except for those few cars who caused tidal waves as we were already slushing through ankle deep water) Can't say enough about the amazing marshalls, traffic patrols, and the community support!
Appreciated getting to choose my t-shirt size at the end, and not getting stuck with a random one since I was a later finisher.
Also, I feel slightly invincible after conquering "the hill," even though I felt like I was running upstream! Date of review: February 28, 2010