In short: New course is no fun In full: The old course was a challenge but enjoyable and well supported by locals. The new course wasn't any fun at all - large hilly sections off-road made it incredibly slow and there was no atmosphere (even with the football stadium finish). A bizarre choice of course which I can only see leading to the race becoming a "niche" off-road event with a couple of hundred runners in future years. A shadow of its former self - still well organised but, for me, sadly a race to avoid in future. Date of review: July 12, 2016
In short: It's the attention to detail that makes this race great In full: 7th time I've run this one and it's as good as ever - definitely my favourite local race.
It's the little things that make the difference : - Friendly marshals - Top quality t-shirt with an Olympic "theme" this year - Well designed medal with the course on it - Still cheaper than most other local races
In short: This is what running is all about ! In full: After taking part in lots of bigger races, some of which are clearly a money making exercise, this race was a refreshing change. Well done to the organisers and please make it a regular event !
PROS - I absolutely loved the course - stunning scenery on undulating country roads. - Atmosphere was wonderful - friendly organisers, other runners and locals who came out to offer support - Post-race BBQ and discounts in local restaurants/cafes
CONS - There was a fair walk to collect bags and then a bit of a wait to collect medal/t-shirt which could do with being improved next year. Date of review: March 18, 2012
In short: Enjoyable but could be improved In full: A very well organised half marathon. The course isn't flat but there are no big hills either. The finish on the athletics track is enjoyable. Not the most welcoming of races....I got the impression that some of the Fairlands Valley Spartans runners/marshalls seemed to resent the fact that non-club runners were taking part. Also, personally, I would have preferred a medal rather than the T-shirt. Date of review: November 8, 2010
In short: Flaws need ironing out In full: This was my second London marathon and it's great to be part of such a special day. However, after spending months training for the race, it's a shame that two things took the shine off the day for me :
1. I started from the blue pen and there seemed to be no control so people started where they wanted. The field was so congested it took me 15 miles before I could get into my stride.
2. Having switched to Lucozade gels specifically for the race it was unforgiveable and unacceptable for them to run out at 21 miles. I finished midway down the field so they must have badly miscalculated the numbers required.
I love London but have to say Berlin is better based on my experiences of the two. Date of review: April 27, 2010