Serpie Planner - event reports
Reading Half Marathon (06 Mar 2005)
Some rather uncomplementary comments about this year's race:
Matthew Chiles - "I left plenty of time to get there, but lack of courtesy coaches meant I was queuing at Reading station for over an hour and did not make it to the start line until 10.30, some 11 minutes after the gun had gone off. The organisation at the end was equally shambolic: poor signage, lack of changing facilities, and unnecessary congestion caused by mixing runners, spectators and cars!
I couldn't face the wait for a bus back to the station - I was worried about hypothermia - so walked it instead, as did many others."
Alex Markle - "I arrived at the station at 8:45 (on the earliest train I could get) and had to wait in the cold for 45 minutes for a bus. When we finally arrived at the start we were told to get a move on, flee the toilet queues and line up as soon as possible, only for the start to be delayed for 30 minutes.
The race itself was fine, apart from the usual grumbles about people starting at the front when they're aiming for a three-hour time, but it all went wrong again after the finish. No signs, no stewards, nobody with any idea of what was going on. I stood shivering for over an hour in a queue that at one point was in the middle of a roundabout, while empty buses came and went and cars full of happy warm runners slipped past, even though we'd been told that taking a car and parking at the stadium would lead to terrible delays in getting home.
I finally got back to East London at half past four, cold, tired and stiff as a plank."
On the other hand Leila Hudson - "I had a great time. 2nd time I have done the race. Drove there very early and got my car park slot...at 8.30am. Race was due to start at 10am. At the finish walked to the car for a warm down walk/jog and managed to get out with no trouble at all.
Only down side was the delay at the start..which kept us in the cold for 30mins..but it didn't bother me at all....used the first two miles as a warm up instead..wrapped up in my bin liners...."
and Gareth Grimshaw "This was my first ever Half marathon, and proud to complete it in 1:48. I'm sorry to hear of the bad luck some people seemed to have. I thought it was one of the better organised events i have run in. My family got a bus from the train station at about half nine and had
arrived by the "supposed" start time.
Was annoying that a lot of slower runners started at the front when it was pretty clear fast people go here, normal runners go here and slow people go to the back!!
I enjoyed my day and would recommend it for other runners, however I live in Reading and didn't have to get a train. Loved the grandstand finish, with the ramp down to make that sprint finish a little easier!"
Reading Half Marathon (02 Mar 2014)
Additional photos on http://imagetogo.net/go/?27418