Very good event but needs some small improvements (about: 2011)|
S. S. from Warlingham, Surrey (4/18/11)
4-5 previous marathons
| 1 Brighton Marathon
This was only the second running of the Brighton Marathon and for a new event it is very well organised. There are a few minor improvements required to take this event to the next level.
The course is generally good with undulations in the first half and being relatively flat for the second half. The residential area from mile 15 - 18 is a little dull but the spectators are enthusiastic, and a big thank you to the man hosing the runners down as it was a hot day with little or no shade. The loop around the power station is very quiet which is not the best thing for runners at that stage. The DJ did his best but you could see that a lot of runners were struggling with the conditions and could have done with a lift.
The organisation is good and you can see that the event has taken some ideas from other major city marathons. However, I would have preferred the start area to have been for runners only as it did get crowded as start time approached. The start corrals were not strictly marshalled and the baggage trucks should close at least 30 minutes before the start to avoid the last minute rush.
The amount of wasted Powerade on the course was a concern. Perhaps take a tip from London and hand out smaller bottles, say 330ml instead of 500ml and it would be useful if the drinks could have been cold, particularly in the later stages, not sure how this could be done but it probably would have cut down on waste. The showers were good and as it was a warm day maybe another couple could have been included.
The finish area needs more organisation. You have a foil blanket wrapped around you but it would be nice to include a sticker to keep it together as trying to keep the blanket on whilst carrying your kit bag and goody bag is almost impossible. Once the runners left the finish area you walked into a wall of people just hanging about waiting for their runner. The last thing that I want to do after running 26.2 miles is fight through a crowd of people to meet my family as I had arranged to meet them away from the finish area. This area should be marshalled better with a clear route for the runners to make their way back to the city centre.
There needs to be more crossing points on the course for spectators, particularly in the last few miles, as this would also help runners leaving the finish area. The medal is very nice and the finisher t-shirts were available in sizes small - XL which beats the one size fits all attitude of London.
The results page on the website is confusing. The finishing position is shown as race time and not CHIP time. Surely your position in the field should be decided by the time you have run and not the order you went through the start?
The spectators were very enthusiastic and really supported all the runners. The fact that it was hot, sunny day probably helped with spectator numbers.
A big thank you to all the volunteers, without who the event just wouldn't work, who were excellent throughout the day.
This is still a fledgling event but I feel that it will become very popular in the next few years and by making a few changes here and there will continue to grow. I just hope the event doesn't try and become too big and keeps runner numbers to a manageable level.
I have already signed up for 2012!