In short: My first time for this challenging race. In full: This was certainly a challenging race, consistent dragging hills but nevertheless not insurmountable. It was great to run along quiet country lanes and any traffic encountered was unobtrusive. Lovely medal, and beer and cakes at the end! All kilometre markers in place. Very pleasant, helpful and friendly marshals.
This was a very friendly event despite the challenges of the course. Finished in 1:05:19, so 10.5 minute miling. Very pleased with that, considering I am getting back into running after a long layoff for deeply unhappy personal reasons. Well done to Martin and Cathy Burke and everyone involved (sorry you weren't able to be there, Martin and Cathy). This race will be in the calendar for next year. Date of review: November 3, 2013
In short: Top notch yet again In full: I've done this race five times now, and have never been disappointed. Superb scenery, the town turns out for this fringe event of the annual Arundel Festival. Same challenging hills but it's ever so worth it. Medal and free download of all your race photos, I had 21 in total this year! Well done to Arundel Scouts and everyone else involved in the organisation, give yourselves a cheer. Date of review: October 6, 2013
In short: Lovely yet challenging race! In full: Knole Park is so lovely, no need to worry about traffic, even the deer were unphased! This was my first venture into this race, and the first proper 7-miler too, so got an inaugural PB of 1:19 approx, just over 11 min miling, not bad in view of my 'below-par' level of fitness!
Definitely not for those who want a flat stroll in the park, and you had to be careful on the descent when doing the loop twice, very steep. Wonderful race though, lovely paperweight memento too. I was able to get a shower at the leisure centre afterwards and then lunch in the ever so pretty village of Eynsford. Made it all worthwhile really, very nice! Date of review: October 6, 2013
In short: Love it! In full: Fast and flat as usual, plenty of club runners but not clubby or elitey at all. Knocked 2.5 minutes off last year, so very pleased with that. The medal was just superb, wonderful for a small 5 mile event like this one! Will be back next year definitely. Well done Hastings Runners, marshals, drinks stations helpers and for everyone else who helped with the race organisation. Thank you all. Date of review: May 17, 2013
In short: First time in Sevenoaks In full: Had heard about Knole Park but had never ventured out until now. What a lovely location to hold a race. It was very slippery due to all the snow and rain, so that made conditions difficult for a very quick run, and you had to be careful. The hill at 2k and 7k was steep-ish but short, so no complaints at all about that. Lovely gradual descent along the 'back straight' as it were before turning to descend for the second lap/finish. Nice medal and drinks and bananas at the finish. Well done Rotary for all their efforts and to everyone involved in the organisation. Many thanks to Lord Sackville for his kind permission to use his estate, a beautiful scenic location. Looking forward to the Sevenoaks 7 in September already! Date of review: April 9, 2013
In short: Lovely half marathon In full: The weather turned out just perfect for this race, so welcome after the Siberian conditions we've all had to endure so far. And there was me in my red running tights! Lol. Got some encouraging and witty comments about those! A real PB potential half marathon, and the only really significant incline was between miles 1 and 2, and even that wasn't at all arduous really. One other very short one around mile 7 but that was to cross over a railway bridge.
Many thanks to Paddock Wood AC for all their efforts, to the marshals and everyone else involved. Good accurate mile markers, welcome drinks and wet sponge stations (plus the guy in the stocks!), very lovely medal too. Good local crowd support along the way. Nice to have a goody bag, very welcome. Would have loved to have got a PB and was on course until mile 10 when my energy levels dropped, but with more training a PB is definitely on the cards.
Well done all, see you next year. Date of review: April 9, 2013
In short: The 'Hilly Hastings Half' strikes again! In full: This was my eighth participation in a row. Why? Because it is such a magnificent race, and a better half marathon is hard to find, in my view. The organisation was superb as always, so once again a great many thanks to Hastings Lions Club. They will need more support next year as Hastings Borough Council and Spar will no longer be able to give full support, for reasons best known to them.
Many thanks to the marshals, police, drinks station volunteers and everyone who had to stand there in the bitterly cold weather, so unusual for this time of year. I loved the Grey Owl horse brass, a wonderful memento. Next year is the 30th Anniversary of this wonderful race, so yours truly will be back, make no mistake. Wonderful crowd support along the way too, I nearly cried when I saw those dear physically handicapped patients from Mary House along the Ridge, watching the race go by and enjoying it as far as they could do so. Bless them. Thank you all, and once again to Hastings Lions Club for all their efforts year on year. Long may it continue. Date of review: March 28, 2013
In short: Exceeded my expectations In full: The organisation was well up to, and exceeded, standard this year. No debacle with goody bags as in last year. The assembly point and stands were located this time in the main sports hall, which allowed far more space for runners etc to gather, warm up and so on. The medal and T-shirt were excellent, especially to commemorate the 30th Anniversary of this race.
The course was just the same, scenic, as well as fast and also tough by turns. Wonderful crowd support, mile markers all accurately in place, superb marshalling. Many thanks to those marshals who stood there in the bitterly cold weather, they must have been frozen stiff at the end! So pleased the race was able to go ahead, many thanks to TW Harriers and everyone involved in making sure the race went ahead. Will be back next year. Date of review: March 2, 2013
In short: One of my all-time favourites. In full: This was as challenging as ever, and as worthwhile as ever. I love it. Chip timing was used for the first time, so a new feature for this magnificent race. This is the fourth time I have run it, missing out in 2009 and 2010 due to injury and holidays respectively!
Many thanks to 1st Arundel Scouts for their brilliant organisation, to the marshalls and other race officials, those who manned drinks stations and to the townsfolk of Arundel who turn out in force every year to cheer the runners on. This makes the race so inclusive, and it is wonderful to take part in this fringe event of the Arundel Festival. All kilometre markers were easily visible and accurately placed. And it was a glorious morning weatherwise which made the glorious scenery such a joy to behold as always! So lovely to receive a medal and, when uploaded, free downloads of your race photos. Not cheap that.
Next year? Of course!! Date of review: August 26, 2012
In short: Cramp again - doh! In full: Yes, yours truly got cramp at mile 9, when trying to climb over a stile. St. John Ambulance personnel helped out with some stretches and TLC at mile 10 though. This is a lovely race, the scenery is to die for. The marshals were very friendly and helpful, regular drinks stations around the course. It was really tough this year, however, and I do ache in new places, as they say! The stretch along the Cuckmere towpath is not as flat as it appears! Well done to Newhaven, Peacehaven and Seaford Lions Club for all their hard work in putting this race on each year.
I ran this race for charity, and completed it so that's the main thing. www.virginmoneygiving.com/Pete-Thompson if any of you might be interested. Date of review: June 3, 2012