In short: Stunning course In full: Great organisation at the start, with the use of the school all day. The route was well marked with plenty of checkpoints providing tea, coffee, cola, soup and sweet and savoury snacks. Marshals were very friendly and helpful, providing a smile and a chat even to those of us bringing up the rear of the 40 mile event. Great t-shirt at the end, with hot food and a shower Stunning scenery, mixed terrain with some gorgeous views. This was my first time at this event and this year the course was altered slightly due to flooding, so that it was 2 laps of the 20 mile course. This meant that those of us running the 40 were treated to "that" hill twice! A bonus... Excellent course, brilliant organisation and all for the bargain price of £15. Would definitely do again. Date of review: April 7, 2013
In short: Well organised 20 mile road race In full: Really enjoyed this one - 2 laps of country roads, well marshalled at every point - with lots of drink stations, some with energy drinks. Friendly atmosphere, first lap included the runners doing the ten mile race as well. Decent goodlie bag, loved the Roadrunner medal (although a separate medal for 20 mile runners would have been nice) Use of the school with tea and coffee on sale was great, the weather was great but the school would have been especially useful on a cold, wet day Somehow managed to squeeze a pb, my friend also pb'd so all in all a good day! Thank you to the Reading Roadrunners! :) Date of review: February 21, 2013
In short: Mixed terrain, coastal path route In full: Nice course - mixed terrain along the coastal path. Like many other runners was unsure whether to wear trail shoes after the recent deluges but given that a large amount of the course is on hard surfaces, opted for road shoes. Well organised race, lots of water stations which were well stocked with water, squash, bananas, sweets and biscuits as well as brandy and mulled wine. Friendly atmosphere - spent most of the event beaming. Great goodie bag and medal, and the use of the pyramids before and after the event was hugely appreciated - as was the free soup or tea and mince pies. A wonderful last marathon for 2012... thank you! Date of review: December 29, 2012
In short: Stunning views In full: Great scenery, great pitstops with jaffa cakes, flat coke (very welcome in the 2nd half), sweets, friendly marshals and a grub van at the end. Hilly course on tarmac - some great downhill running! Decent medal at the end and the use of the hotel was a bonus Not too keen on runing along the A20 path but the rest of the roads are quiet and very scenic. And hey! You can always plug into your ipod along the A20 path... All in all a well-organised, well-marshalled event with a small, friendly field of like minded runners. Date of review: November 21, 2012
In short: Hills, rooty forest trails and great running In full: Great fun! Really enjoyed this race. Transport to the start and back to ark and ride worked beautifully. Stunning course, well marshalled with regular water stations serving bananas as well. A great day! Date of review: October 9, 2012
In short: Self-styled "UK's most iconic ultra"? Big claim, didn't deliver In full: Very pretty scenery. After the first 20 miles on dull roads, that is. We were finally treated to a patch of Hadrian's Wall that was off-road. Vindolanda was memorable and The Hill directly afterwards great fun. Running alongside the river, approaching the bridges, was certainly iconic.
Sadly the rest of the run didn't really deliver on the promise given in the blurb.
Having been emailed advice that both trail and road shoes were equally appropriate, my friend opted for trail shoes. After 20 miles of road, her shins were not in a good way. We all understand that there had to be some last minute changes to the course because of weather conditions, but it would have helped if we had been told that the course would be about 85-90% hard surfaces.
The soup at Vindolanda was ok but it would have been helpful if some complex carbs had been on offer, especially for people who were refuelling for the next day. Even the catering vans only sold burgers, hog roast etc. The no of wise at the end was just that - no pasta, only a roll to go with it.
The first part of the course was well marked out but it became confusing towards the end, could really have been better marshalled towards the end stages
Pit stops were really good - sandwiches, cakes, hot drinks, fruit, chocolate.
It seems a shame that the medals were so nondescript, and the same for everyone, whether they were running expert, challenger or relay.
The ribbon on mine unravelled, the same thing happened to one of my team mates. When the race had finished there were no ladies medium t'shirts left - only small mens, which didn't fit.
All in all I don't see how Rat Race can justify charging such extortionate prices. £200 for a 2-day event seems really overpriced. Date of review: June 27, 2012