2012 Bristol Half Marathon

DT19DT19 ✭✭✭


Anyone ran this course before? I am doing it for the first time and plan to attack it at pb pace as it is the finale of my years racing in terms of half marathons and have heard it is pretty flat.

Its always good to know how the race pans out in terms of flat or hilly sections in advance so that i know whats coming. Whilst I have heard it is very flat i am sure there are some down hill and up hill sections??



  • I have done it before and I would say a definate PB course, only slight gradient I noticed was at about 9 miles and 12 but you may not even notice it. LOL.  I found it boring to be honest as so flat.  Top tip is that the loos are definatley not enough for the amount of people and I nearly missed my wave start so allow for that and then allow another 20 mins on top!

    Good luck

  • DT19DT19 ✭✭✭

    thats helpful, thanks. I thought it would be a bit boring, will just be a matter of head down and run.

    I have been caught by the loo problem many times. I am in first section of wave 1 so go at 9.30 so aim to be in area for about 8.30. 

  • Yup it's a PB course, basically flat, without too many corners, wide roads, good quality road surface though a couple of short smoothed cobbled sections.

    You go up and over a flyover just before the 1st mile mark, then it's a long straight stretch up the portway. There's is a very slight incline up the portway which you shouldn't notice that early into the race. Then it's payback coming back down the portway so should expect to be slightly faster heading back towards the city.

    The only significate hill is around castle park around the 11 mile mark. It is definitely noticable! If you don't notice it you've either gone off course or you've taken it extremely easy before then! It is only a very short hill section though and the sharpest section is probably only 100m or so.

    Boring? image Well, they cancelled the dancing girls, if you're going for a time probably best not to stop and join the queue for the rollercoster, and fireworks don't work to well in the daylight. But the Heart FM team are normally there, there might be a band, there's often a hot air balloon in Queens square, there is a great atmosphere and crowds around the city (although there are some very quiet areas too) but yeah I'm afraid it is only a road race so maybe best not to take your camera with you image

    If you can get there early there are loads of pubs, bars, cafes in the area so have  a drink, relax, use their facilities and then enter your starting pen. 

    Good luck and enjoy image

  • DT19DT19 ✭✭✭

    thats helpful thanks. Looking at the route it seems its 8 miles out and back up the portway and that is where the time for a pb ought to be made up.  I know bristol well but am struggling to work out if it goes thriough castle park or around the outside and where exactly the hill is. Does it go up past evening post building?

  • It doesn't go that close to the evening post building. It goes around castle park. There's a reasonable slope going up queens st. (off passage st) towards castle st.

    The steepest section (although very short) is going past the Galleries shopping mall on Newgate. You then come down a slope along the high st. before turning off Redcliff st.

    Yup the bulk of the race is along the portway where you will either make or break your race. Just don't push too hard going up the portway, as although you're unlikely to relise it at the the time you are going up a very gradual incline. You will make up the small lost time on the return as long as you haven't pushed too hard on the outward stage.

    It's also worth pointing out if you are going to be using a GPS watch for pacing don't trust it too heavily as you are running through the Avon gorge, i.e. along side a great big rock-face which gps watches don't like. It' s quite likely your watch will measure the race long.

  • Yup, it's the climb up to the Galleries which you'll notice.  Still, you get to go down the other side of the hill and then you're nearly home!  Agree with the comments about GPS reception, too - the Gorge is very bad for this.

  • DT19DT19 ✭✭✭

    ok i have the image of where it goes. I have never done a city race, i am used to doing quite underlating country races so that hill should pass easily. thats good to know re gps as i am a slave to it!!

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