In short: Dead flat run along the Thames, hugely social, well organised and brilliant cake! In full: An out and back along the Thames Path so you get to see everyone out on the course, plenty of aid stations, lots of gels, cakes, water, squash, friendly marshalls, nice big medal... pack a couple of pounds in your pocket for the ice cream vans! A PB course if you want to run fast, a lovely social run if you want to wave, high five and enjoy the views! Date of review: August 24, 2014
In short: Bit too busy for the route and facilities... In full: Fourth year in a row I've done this event and whilst its great that its grown, it's probably got too big for the course its on and the facilities at the current base.
1) Friendly folk at the aid stations, lots of well stocked goodies there.
2) Goody bag looks decent
3) Flat quickish very "multi-terrain course"
4) Lots of friendly familiar faces.
5) Can park 2 minutes from venue.
1) Pyramids was utterly over crowded/jam packed probably to dangerous levels.
2) Course was a swamp in places after a lot of rain...
3) Medal is in the goody bag. Always feel a cardinal sin to do this at a marathon, not even bothered to look at it yet. If the organisers can't be bothered to hang them around finishers necks then its a very anti-climatic finish for me and takes some of the sense of achievement away.
4) Course was too busy in many, many places. There were lots of bottle necks, lots of bits of course are single track, there is a kissing gate, bike blockers, mud, puddles, lots of stop/starts/shuffles/stumbles, 1600 entrants on that course is too much I feel.
5) Medical staff at the finish could do with some people skills!
6) Said parking is £8.50
7) Start went early, first announcement I heard (at 8:56) was "Its started..." Date of review: December 22, 2013
In short: Excellent fast trail race through RIchmond Park and along the Thames In full: Third year of running and gets better each year. 13.1 out and back route through Richmond Park and then along The Thames, 7 aid stations with lots of goodies, flap jack, crisps, jelly babies and gels, electrolyte drinks too... nice big medal. Very good surface for a trail run (with some tarmac stretches)... bit of a hill on the way out, which seems much bigger on the way back! What's not to like... Now if only they could organise some less typical British Bank Holiday weather too! Date of review: August 26, 2013
In short: Could do much better, cutting too many corners... In full: Pros... 1) Very scenic run around Rutland Water and not many decent sized events at this time of year. 2) Very friendly cadets manning the aid stations. 3) Lots of great runners.
Cons 1) For a £35.00 marathon offered very poor value. No medal (got a blank certificate in the goody bag), no shirts that fitted at the end (only "S" left for the over 5 hours runners), only water at aid stations aside from two that had SIS gels. 2) Looooooooog walk to the start, if you had to visit the information tent and then go back to your car you were looking at a 3 mile walk! 3) Weather was awful and trails very muddy in places, not the organisers fault of course, but was just a grim day in the cold and rain. And just made worse at the totally anti-climatic finish, one poor chap in the tent handing out goody bags (i.e. 9-bar, gel, shirt that wouldn't fit and the blank certificate)...
Was a much better event when we did this in 2010 (medals and far more at aid stations)... won't be on my 2013 list and rather put me off their other events. Date of review: November 4, 2012
In short: Excellent trail race, incredibly well organised and marshalled In full: Second time I've done this marathon and suspect won't be the last. Very well organised, the RD told me that there were 200 volunteers and they were all excellent, very friendly and encouraging. The course by trail running standards is very well marked and marshalled, a bag thank you to the "orange spray man" was barely a 100 yards without something being marked either for navigation or a warning. It's pretty lumpy in places, narrow in others, few roots and rocks and patches of sand to negotiate, but nothing too much to worry about. If you want flat road then there are plenty of alternatives! Would absolutely recommend to anyone looking for an off road marathon (or half!) my only suggestion to the RD would be to look at the marathon schedule - a couple of weeks later and would likely be the only marathon in the country, as it was it clashed with a couple of other trail marathons. It's no big deal for most people of course but for the 100 Marathon Club types, if its a blank weekend, they will come... Date of review: September 17, 2012
In short: Excellent first running of the Kent Roadrunner In full: Organised by a very experienced runner you could easily tell the thought that had gone into the event. Everything went like clockwork and quite possibly the best medal this side of the Atlantic!
Whilst there is a bit of (an ever increasing!) hill it's made up for by a very runnable downhill that you can power down, perfect running surface, aid station every 2.5k with lots of nibbles as well as the usual water/electrolite drinks... I managed a PB and wasn't alone! Bound to sell out in 2013... RD offering a healthy discount for 2013 entries if you're quick! Date of review: June 4, 2012
In short: Excellent trail marathon In full: First class event from start to finish
1) Big field to partk in for easy parking. 2) Easy to get your number/chip on the day. 3) Brilliantly marked course, never once did I wonder "Am I going the right way" with arrows, paint, ribbon and marshalls allowed for a failsafe system in case some idiot thought it would be amusing to reverse an arrow for example. 4) Nice scenery. 5) Not ridiculously hilly and despite a fair bit of a rain the course was 99% mud free. 6) World class cakes at the end. 7) World class marshalls and helpers throughout. 8) Nice medal, goody bag and shirt. 9) Great crowd of runners. 10) Lots of water/munch stations.
Cons 1) Rained a bit. 2) The two pounds I now need to burn off for over eating on said cakes at the end. "Go on love, have some more, you must be famished" said one of the lovely ladies at the end. Alas that I did! lol
Should be a model race for anyone putting on a trail marathon, base what you do on this event. Date of review: September 19, 2011
In short: Very well run small trail marathon In full: After the torrential rain and mist of 2010 the organisers had obviously gone the "extra mile" to make sure nobody was going to go astray this year. At the start they handed out maps and route instructions (which I doubt anyone needed!) and the course was marked with arrows on posts etc and on the ground too, plus tape... plus marshalls at some critical places too. A big thank you to whoever marked out the course! I think must be the best I've seen so far... never thought for one minute "am I going the right way?"
6 aid stations, great volunteers, nice goody bag and for a good cause to boot...
The course is pretty hilly, basically two climbs up the downs and two downs, which makes light of an awful lot of undulations, although the hill at mile 15-16 is the only real killer.
Would recommend to anyone. Date of review: August 22, 2011
In short: Very friendly, flat, low key event. In full: This is the second of these events I've participated in and they've both been very enjoyable.
It's 4 ups and downs along the Mersey on a near dead flat path (the only downside is a few bits of cobbles and it's all concrete/paving stones so a bit hard on the joints).
The advantage of this is that you get to see the other runners multiple times for a high five or a word of encouragement/humour/sympathy.
Easy parking, simple, low key events and raising funds for charity not to mention that the organisers are top people!
Won't be for everyone, no crowds of support and the scenery can get a bit dull when you're on the last leg of the second day but I really enjoy small scale events like this, and would recommend them to anyone. Date of review: June 2, 2011