In short: Enjoyable as ever In full: The annual jaunt from Warwick Castle to Kenilworth Castle. It was a hot one this year - lots of casualties, and paramedics kept busy. This race has grown enormously since I first tackled it a few years ago and the atmosphere was great - lots of mad people in fancy dress - a three-person Chinese dragon, and a group in Bavarian clothes carrying beer glasses added to the occasion. There was good support from the locals - with plenty of jelly babies and one lady shooting the runners with a water pistol! Organisation was good, although again this year, it seemed to take forever to get a bus back to Warwick, one of the detractors of it being point-to-point race, however this was a minor complaint in the scheme of things. Would have been nice to have a banana or a fruit bar in the goody bag especially given the wait for the buses, but again, that's a relatively minor complaint. Same time next year then! Date of review: June 9, 2014
In short: Lovely race - well organised In full: My second year doing the Shakespeare Half brought a welcome and unexpected PB despite less than perfect training in the lead up. Great atmosphere, well organised, fantastic medal. No goody bag or t-shirt, but I think more of the entry fee goes to charity, so I'm not going to quibble with that. The Girl Guides on the Greenway water station were absolutely fantastic, giving the runners such a lift going into the last mile or so. Lovely, lovely race - a definite favourite. Date of review: April 28, 2014
In short: Lovely slightly hilly run between Warwick and Kenilworth In full: First time I've done this race since 2010 and its popularity seems to have exploded in the last few years. A slight tweak to the route improved things this year in my opinion and the start and finish within the castle grounds as always make the race that little bit special. The people of Warwick and especially Kenilworth turned out in force and I loved the unofficial 'jelly baby station' in someone's front garden in Kenilworth - fabulous!
My only gripe this year was that the buses back to Warwick took forever to arrive. Maybe sort that out for next year please? It was the one annoyance over a pretty much otherwise perfect race! Date of review: June 10, 2013
In short: Beautiful run in the lovely Warwickshire countryside In full: I found this to be a really well organised event. There were what felt like hundreds of stewards around, plenty of drinks stations and some nice touches such as sponges. I certainly felt well looked after.
Although the roads are still open to traffic, I didn't find this an issue, although I can see towards the end where you're running along a narrow lane at the edge of a main road, it could get interesting.
Overall, a lovely race, beautiful scenery, a great way to spend a Sunday morning.
In short: Vile weather but fun nonetheless In full: Luckily I didn't have any of the problems with parking others have noted. Being a local, my intention was to walk along. In the end I got a lift although the traffic was noticeably building up and we ended up jumping out of the car and walking the last bit. Unfortunately those runners who were driving did not have the same option. The run itself was lovely, through Warwickshire country lanes for the most part. Unfortunately the weather was not kind and we were snowed, rained and sleeted on. The run up to the finish line was a muddy, slippy mess, so you had to be careful and sprinting the last 100m wasn't much of an option. Thoroughly enjoyed it though and will be back next year. Date of review: March 18, 2013
In short: Hot, hot, hot! In full: This was my first half marathon and I think I'll be back for more. Everything seemed nicely organised - picking up race number just before the race was a very smooth process with no queuing. There didn't appear to be any starting pens but I didn't find that an issue as I went to the back anyway, being a big of a plodder especially in the unexpected 25 degree heat.
The organisers had put on more water stations given the weather and this was certainly welcome. In fact, I felt very well looked after with copious numbers of first aiders and marshalls keen to ensure everyone was coping well enough in the heat.
Getting out of Coventry (not the most scenic of cities it has to be said) and into the surrounding countryside was lovely.
In all, a smooth, enjoyable experience and I'd like to come back next year to get a better time. Date of review: October 2, 2011
In short: First 10k and loved it! In full: This was my first foray into anything over 5k and any race other than a Race For Life, and this might just be the one to have finally got me properly smitten with the running bug after having dabbled for several years.
The atmosphere was great, start and finish locations fantastic, and I especially enjoyed the little (shaded) country lanes between Leek Wootton and Kenilworth.
I did feel the start was a little chaotic, and the queue for the toilets enormous, though, luckily being a local with three children, I was aware of the location of other toilets in the castle grounds so it wasn't too much of a problem for me.
Overall, a lovely experience and one I'd definitely like to repeat next year, hopefully a bit faster and with a few more races under my belt by then. Date of review: June 23, 2010