In short: Not too daunting for first time 1/2 marathoners like me! In full: Never been to Birmingham before and was pleasantly surprised by the architecture and vibe of the city as well as the community spirit of the event and the amount of spectators at certain points, particularly between the 8/9th mile(some very kindly offering Jelly Babies, sweets and orange slices to runners in need of an energy boost, bless them).
As mentioned previously by another poster, the 3 mile stint by the Cadbury's factory could have been 'a little dull' had the road not been used by runners in both directions, so it was interesting to watch runners on the other side, particularly spotting those in fancy dress (and a bobsleigh!!!:-p) However, personally I would have much preferred to run a few more miles around the city centre, only because I'm an out of towner and it would be nice to see all the quarters the town has to offer.
Anyway, had no probs running the 10 miles solidly but then the course started to go up hill at a fair incline. This wouldn't have been an issue had I not developed chronic back and hip pain, and so I really had to slow down at this point as the pain was quite uncomfortable, but I didn't deem the hilly end impossible. A few people seemed to walk some of this section and there didn't seem to be a congestion issue for the faster, fitter runners so this was fine. It was also nice to see even more roadside spectators at this crucial point, cheering us on for the last leg, which did help me hobble on and not pull over to the conveniently placed roadside ambulance crew/paramedics etc.
Overall, this was my first half marathon experience and I would def like to run another, including this event again as the support, atmosphere and organisation has been so organised and welcoming to this newbie runner.
Lastly, because there seemed to be a genuine camaraderie and friendly spirit amongst participants, I was very much saddened by the news of the gentleman who passed away after the event and offer my deepest sympathy to the family of Kevin Paterson and all those who knew him. xxx Date of review: October 24, 2012