In short: Scenic, organised, friendly, fun. Thames Valley Triathletes certainly know how to put on a good show. In full: Corking day out! A lot of attention to detail from the organisers made for a welcoming and smooth-running event. The swim consisted of 16 lengths of a 25m pool, with everyone self-ranked for time (slowest first), and never more than 3 per lane so absolutely no congestion. The 20km out and back ride followed a woodland route with mildly challenging short sharp climbs at either end. This was along a B road, so there was some, but not too much traffic, and the one difficult junction was attentively marshalled. The 5km run was on paths alongside the river, so flat until you hit the final slog up to the finish line. Managed to persuade my brother to join the fun and renew some sibling rivalry, though it was more like the brothers Marx than the Brownlees as he got in a flap and kept tripping the timing mats before we'd started. Will definitely aim to be there next year. Date of review: August 17, 2011
In short: Flat, fast and scenic, if multiple laps suit your mindset, then this is the race for you. In full: First, hearty thanks to the organisers, marshalls, drink dispensers, supporters and the person who rigged up their garden hose to douse the overheating runners.
In brief, the race is run over 12 laps around quiet country lanes, finishing in the picturesque grounds of Boddingtom Manor (no leafy final few metres has ever been more welcome.)
On a cooler day, and if multiple laps are your thing, this would certainly have PB potential. The only downside is that the scenery does tend to get a bit monotonous (all those hedgerows).
Congratulations to all finishers, it seems the heat did for half the field. Date of review: June 27, 2011
In short: Welcoming and encouraging, but you need mental strength to keep banging those laps out. In full: Thanks to Smiler Sid, the lap-counters and the rest of the team for an excellently organised event. Perhaps a race for the more hardcore marathoner, given the 40-lap format, but I was mightily encouraged by the undentably cheery determination of those I was running with. The course followed a shady tarmac foothpath around a park; there was a short sharp rise of several metres elevation at one end, with almost imperceptible inclines leading to and away from it on the longer sides. The accumulated ascent, added to lap fatigue, probably means it wouldn't meet most people's PB criteria. It's a small race with maximum 60 entrants. The organisers clearly pride themselves on knowing what runners want, so plenty of energy drinks and snacks available and a grand finish and trophy to all irrespective of categories and placing. This is a very good event which has been produced from potentially unpromising resources. Date of review: September 6, 2010
In short: An undulating rural course, well-marshalled with minimum traffic. Enjoyed it. In full: I enjoyed the course through leafy lanes with just enough inclines to make it mildly challenging. Good marshalling, changing facilities and T-shirt. A small, friendly event, ideal for first-timers. Date of review: July 25, 2006
In short: Challenging, encouraging and friendly. But bear in mind it´s not a PB course and you're right in amongst the traffic on lap 2. In full: I liked the heterodox, carnival atmosphere - you could do it alone or in a team, on rollerblades, bike or trike. You could even bring along a fire engine and drag it around behind you, if that took your fancy. Organisation needs a few tweaks, though. Some unmarshalled junctions left runners at the mercy of motorists on the second lap. Big thanks to the Wolverhamptonians for their encouragement and makeshift sprinklers. Date of review: September 6, 2004