In short: Lovely run in the sun In full: Unbelievable race. Huge credit to the organisers who clearly realise what runners expect for the hard earned cash they hand over. On arrival I had a few doubts as to whether the car park being at the same place as the finish would work but there were no problems. These guys know what they're doing. Loving the long sleeve technical T as well. Thanks to the marshals too, a really friendly and supportive crew makes all the difference, cheers to all of you.
This race taught me a lot about where I am in my marathon training and was tough on tired legs from a hard-core x-country race last weekend. The weather was perfect and these are the days that make you feel lucky to be an endurance runner. Date of review: February 17, 2013
In short: Absolute carnage but brilliantly organised In full: The last time I ran this 2 years ago I finished 20 mins quicker than yesterday, although I ran far better this year. The course has changed a bit to keep things interesting, but the conditions were unbelievably challenging.
At one point I couldn't work out if I was running down a path or a waterfall. Mud and floods everywhere, combined with the incessant sideways rain and wind, meant it was no surprise to see people asking to be taken off the course and given space blankets. I managed to keep putting one foot in front of the other, helped by numerous cake stops dished out by the best marshalls you will ever see.
Felt a great sense of achievement in finishing and it's given me confidence for the road marathon I am training for. The plod was meant to be training for that but to be honest this was far tougher then 26 miles on flat tarmac.
A very special race. Date of review: February 11, 2013
In short: Memories to keep forever In full: It's a fairly long drive from Winchester to Campbeltown, but it was worth every mile. This race is just superb. It's virtually flat but the leg sapping beach/dunes section and the strong head wind on the way back in made it tough if you were trying to push. I managed a marginal PB which was outside the time I wanted but I gave it everything and crossed the line absolutely spent.
The scenery is lovely, it's a beautiful part of the world. There's also a great atmosphere generated by the people of Campbeltown, who embrace and support this event like no other I've taken part in.
Organisation is first class and the value you get for your hard earned cash is second to none. I was too tired to eat much of my Danish pastry but my little girl said it was lovely.
As I watched the sun set over Islay and Jura from my digs after the race it really hit me how brilliant this event and this part of the world is. Best bank holiday weekend away ever. Date of review: June 8, 2012
In short: Hot with a short hill in the middle In full: Lovely event. Excellent organisation on the day with good attention to detail. Good communication over the PA, a proper finish line, excellent and sufficient number of marshalls - all in all a really good day out. My 21 month old daughter even made her debut, running the 100metre dash and even getting a medal.
One thing that's a bit strange is the results are as yet (ie: two days later) not posted on the website, whereas I think they've generally been posted on the day in recent years. This is more me impatiently wanting to know how I did (the heat and the profile made it hard to measure on time alone) than any criticism of the excellent organisers. Date of review: May 29, 2012
In short: Just brilliant In full: Just a massive thank you to all involved in the organisation and support. This is what running should be about - great views, challenging course, friendly atmosphere and smooth organisation. Really enjoyed it. Date of review: May 14, 2012
In short: Really enjoyable Sunday morning race In full: Like many I was put off by last year's reviews and only entered on the day and because I live 5 mins from the start. However, there was nothing to worry about because this is a really good race. The course has inclines and as a result is not super fast but it's not exactly fell running and decent times are achievable. It was absolutely perfect running weather (sunny but cool with a gentle breeze) and the middle 3 or 4k follow a picturesque road with fields on either side. Organisation was good, no problems entering on the day and all very relaxed and competent. Lastly, the whines from last years reviews about finishing on "shingle" are comical if it's the same finish (which I think it is). The shingle turned out to be a gravel road - totally inoffensive. I'd encourage people put off by subjective reviews to have a good look at this one next year. Date of review: February 27, 2012
In short: Not the best race organisation in the world, but not bad either and a very good course In full: Really enjoyed the course. The first 5-6km is a long steady climb which doesn't give you much warm up time, but I enjoyed the challenge and the last 4km downhill absolutely flew by.
Bit of a queue to get into the site at the beginning, although I left it late so can't complain. Was v easy to park once we were on site. They probably should have put some temporary toilets in, people were in and out of the bushes like badgers. Post race was unspectacular - only water and a medal and no goody bag or anything, but personally that makes no difference to me.
Hills at the beginning make a PB tricky. I had run faster in training than I did on the day and had half an eye on going sub-40, but on the day was a good couple of minutes outside of that.
There was a really nice family atmosphere before and after and there was a fun run for the kids which is always a really nice touch. Date of review: May 24, 2011
In short: Superb race, very well organised In full: I don't know what's go on in previous years, but I thought this race was superbly organised and the only let down was Network Rail/First Great Western.
Yes it's busy, but that's why it draws the crowds, which is why a lot of people do this one in the first place. You can't have you cake and eat it, so to speak.
I thought the seeded start worked very well, there were plenty of toilets and the post race water/medal/goody bag/t-shirt conveyer worked very well.
I was nervous after reading reviews of previous years, but those concerns were unfounded. See you next year! Date of review: March 14, 2011
In short: Great organisation, beautiful course, but ban the brainless litterlouts In full: Congratulations to the organisers, this was a great race. They have come up with a fantastic course across the forest, taking in some trails that I didn't know were there. Really made the most of this beautiful part of the country. Equally the marshalls were superb and the race infrastructure ran like clockwork. Well done.
On a less positive note, if you were one of the people who casually slung your bottles and other rubbish into the middle of the forest, hang your head in shame. It spoils it not just for the other runners but for all the other users of this beautiful part of the world, not to mention the wildlife. Take it to the next mile marker or give it to a marshall next time. Date of review: March 14, 2011