I chose this race as my first attempt at a half as it was described as flat fast and was within an hour's drive.
The weather wasn't the best but that's part of the fun. I was under the impression that toilet/parking and coffee shop were all available however this wasn't the case.
Luckily I'd stopped off at nearby popular burger establishment before arrival otherwise I would have been in real trouble. Managed to find alternative parking and put it down to experience, it was for a good cause so who am I to complain.
Registration was friendly and easy, the course was amended because of the bad weather to ensure everyone stayed safe. This was explained at the race briefing and I accept that this can happen.
The start was a bit haphazard as we had to go single file through a gate to reach the line and not all the runners were through the gate when the klaxon went off.
The course was as described for the most part until the diversion onto the trail section during the return leg. This was very muddy and slippery in parts not what I expected.
Goody bag and medal were ok, I've seen better and it was for a good cause.
Marshalls were great, they had to endure some terrible conditions.
Just finishing for me was an achievement but to find out later the course was over a mile short of the half distance really shocked me, I feel totally let down.
I was going to use this as a baseline for future races but that's not really applicable now.
Sorry to say I will not be using these again.
Posted on 12.02.18
I entered this event quite late. A St Valentines Day themed, friendly race with plenty of PB opportunities was an attractive proposition.
Race had 5k, 10k or half marathon options. I chose half marathon option.
Course was a described as a flat out and back on solid canal paths.
Pre-race emails were plentyful and I got a feeling this was going to be a good, honest race.
Race numbers were collection only. These were picked up by start line with pre-race facilities available at a local coffee shop.
Baggage was in an area next to the start line.
The race had several problems.
First of all the coffee shop was closed.
The area we were given for parking was unavailable unless you wanted an £80 parking ticket!!!
Organisers appologised and said it was completely out of their control.
The course had to be changed at short notice due to flooding caused by heavy rain. This meant a 2-lap race for those doing the half marathon.
Biggest fault was to come - more on that later.
Race route went along canal path, did a loop of the football ground and then got a bit confused. Route eventually took us along a grassy trail which became tricky to run on due to the slippery mud and rain.
In my opinion the course wasn't accurately described.
We completed first lap and I noticed we'd only done about 6miles so knew if we repeated the lap again it would be significantly short of the half marathon distance.
As I a crossed finish line my watch showed just 11.9miles so I had to carry on running another 1.2 miles to make up the half marathon distance. I then aired my concerns and showed my watch to organisers who made a note of that time.
I can accept most things but a massively short course is completely unforgivable and very, very disappointing.
One of the organisers blamed the marshals.
Marshals give up their sundays to help races run smoothly so to blame them for this isn't right or fair.
Finishers were given a less than average medal, a bag containing bottle of beer, water and packet of crisps,
There were also some cakes at finish line.
This race needs vast improvement.
£20 isn't good value especially given the problems.
Parking & pre-race facilities obviously need to be looked at.
The short course is completely unacceptable and very disappointing. Having to run 1.2 miles to make up the distance is simply not on. This was down to an error by organisers NOT marshals and it shows a lack of class to try and shift the blame onto others.
I wanted to like it. I'm sure the organisers are good, honest people but it's clear errors made. As runners themselves, I am sure they must understand our frustrations.
I accept some issues were out of their control.
On a positive note, with work it could be a decent event.
It also raised money for charity which I guess is a good thing.
*** Results have just come in. They have put down the time from my Garmin AFTER I did the extra 1.3miles. Does that make me feel better? NO.
Everybody else have been given 12miles finish times.
Complete and utter joke.
I still feel angry and cheated and I know other runners felt the same but kept quiet.
Would I do this race again? 100% NO.
I have already booked another race with these guys at Easter but I won't be back.
Hope they learn from these errors. A correctly measured course and accurate timing is so important. They failed badly on this score.
I have tried to be as fair as possible but some things you simply can't defend.
Posted on 11.02.18