Reviewed by Simon Linklater 9th October 2019

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Organisation

Great work Bournemouth. We had starting pens based on predicted finishing times which worked a treat. The marshalls were encouraging and as always there was one absolute legend yelling encouragement. Thank you to that woman.

Water stations at every 5km were gratefully received given it was a tad warm. The race starts at Kings Park but finishes at Bournemouth Pier. I know there were buses available, but I didn’t use the service given my hotel was in the middle.

Names on the race numbers are always a great addition as it means supporters can offer extra support.

Race Info

Cost £53.50
Elevation 105m
Results CLICK HERE
Terrain Road/Footpath
Entries 2131
Start BH7 7AF
Finish BH2 5AA

The Route

Virtually the whole route takes in the seafront path and the coastal road. Getting from one to the other provided a couple of tough hills but the majority of the race is flat. You do run back on yourself on 4 or 5 occasions, but that didn’t worry me as you get to watch the faster runners doing there stuff.

I did find the coastal path narrow at times, with runners going in both directions and general public going about their Sunday business. The odd cyclist and one absolute bellend on his roller blades were not ideal.

Running on both Boscombe and Bournemouth pier though was a joy and some of the views West from the cliff road were amazing. You also run through the finish line at around 17 miles which is a tad strange but it meant you got the opportunity to experience the crowd more than once.

Atmosphere

There is little in the the way of support at the beginning of the race but as you get closer to Bournemouth pier the crowds do pick up. The finish area was amazing and running through the funnel of spectators at the end was a huge buzz and I had to hold back the tears. All along the coastal path you have spectators dotted around offering encouragement and the marshalls were great too.

With my name of my race number there were lots of “Cmon Simon, you got this” and I thank each and every person that offered me support. There was a brief moment where these comments went crazy and I couldn’t work out why every spectator was willing me.

Turns out the chap taking part in the wheelchair race ahead of me, was also called Simon. Great effort fellow Si.

My Ratings

Organisation 90%
Value 80%
Atmosphere 78%
Route 65%
PB Potential 60%

Value

Marathons are not cheap. But Bournemouth give you a lot for your money. I thought the medals and finishers T-shirts were both excellent. No doubt my running friends will see me wearing my purple t-shirt in pride and a training run soon.

PB Potential

If you had a nice calm day then I see no reason why this route couldn’t provide a good opportunity to run a fast time. The two main hills come around 12 miles and 17 miles. Whilst they are steep, they don’t last long, so even if you walked up them it wouldn’t put too much of a dent in your time.

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