In short: Well organised race In full: The most well organised race I have been to for years. The best goody bag I have ever received - some snacks, training diary and not lots of paper to recycle. The medal also stands out as one of the best that I have received. The drink station staff were supportive and the marshalls did a fantastic job of controlling the traffic.
I'll be back next year or in the Autumn to do another 20. Date of review: March 21, 2010
In short: Either atrocious organisation or sub 1:50ish elitist? In full: I write this with regret as this is my local half. I've done this run before in similar conditions so I do not put my annoyance down to the weather. It's Brighton - cold, wet and windy in winter but glorious in summer.
I was not aiming for a good time today so I started towards and the back and didn't have any issues through the Lanes or town. The marshalls could have been more vocal but I was appreciative of their presence in any case. The course was changed due to the bad weather we had and the degradation of the cliffs so there was some doubling over ground but hey the race went on and not cancelled so all good. I thought an OK run until I sprinted from the 13mile mark towards the finish line, where to me, is where the problems started.
What I found annoying and disappointing was the apparent elitism of the race director/organiser who did not abandon chip collection when it was 20 deep of pushing and shoving people all aiming to get the feet on to the mats. It took about 2-3 minutes for people to get their chip time registered.
If this was the race leaders or â€œclub runnersâ€ would this have been acceptable?
I would say a definite NO. I think the race organisers needs to assess why they are encouraging more participants to run and advertise on the radio if they then treat any â€œslower runnersâ€ with no respect and place the value of their precious chips rather than the enjoyment and safety of the runners. (By slower runners I am referring to the elitism of not caring about people who finished over 1:50. I personally think that is a good time. Actually I think any one that starts a half marathon has done fantastic for just being there)
I am not upset by my chip time today as I used my watch and will disregard the official time. I know several people who were set on getting a certain time and have trained hard and have now feel they have not achieved their goal as their official time is out by the few minutes it took to cross their line. I just hope it has not deterred too many runners from running again.
As for the bag drop, I am still speechless. Luckily nothing got taken from my bag and I hope everyone else was just as lucky.
In short: Nice Tshirt In full: This is the only race tshirt that I know I'll wear(besides Nike ones). Good support from the marshalls. The weather was a bit miserable but if it had been Saturday we would be complaining it was too hot!
PS - Finsbury park has hills and all races around this park follow the same lap circuit. Date of review: March 4, 2007
In short: I got a PB! But the goody bag was not environmentally friendly. In full: Great race and hills were challenging but not as bad as other halves. Organisation was good. Only gripe was why give out a near empty large plastic bag when we are all meant to be doing our bit for the environment. I would have prefered just the drink handed to me and the other bits on a pick up basis if we wanted.
Thanks to the marshalls. Date of review: February 4, 2007
In short: Good race with lots of potential In full: Very good race with a bit of fun with the bananas. I did no training and still got just outside my PB so definite PB material. I managed to get 8 out of 9 km markings so didn't find these too bad but agree black on dark blue hard to see.
I was suprised my "water" had some additives on my first way round but I got actual water on the second lap. I don't like to try new sports drinks in a race situation but it was all good. At least it wasn't a strong flavour like the orange flavoured Lucozade, as I still feel like I ODed on that during the London marathon build up.
The crowd support was great and the banana bantar was funny.
In short: Very good but no chip timing and poor handling at finish. In full: Another PB over this distance and enjoyed the scenery and route. Some marshalls were very supportive. Organisers could learn from Sussex Beacon HM and increase the height of the bollards with cardboard to prevent injury. I found no problem with parking and and pre race information warned on baggage storage area and to leave your bag in your boot. Lucozade was a welcome surprise in lead up to FLM, I'll never get used to the sickly taste . I was impressed by the water stations as have done 2 races this year where there was no water by the time I went through. I finally managed to break the 2 hour barrier but was disappointed at the disorganised, shambolic finish. Chip timing would have solved all or larger finishing area. I will be doing the NSPCC one in July. Date of review: March 12, 2006