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Music didn’t live up to the beat say runners

PUBLISHED: 11:39 09 October 2008 | UPDATED: 15:30 25 August 2010

WINNER: John McFarlane in one hour 10 minutes

WINNER: John McFarlane in one hour 10 minutes

A HALF-marathon that attracted thousands last Sunday has been criticised by runners.

A HALF-marathon that attracted thousands last Sunday has been criticised by runners.

The musically themed run to the Beat attracted 10,000 people to run 13.1 miles in a loop from the O2, through Woolwich, Charlton and Greenwich.

But the event didn't live up to the hype with the so-called 'groundbreaking music' being branded unimpressive by those who took part.

Bromley council officer Peter Dawson, 25, of Old Hill, Chislehurst, said: "I enjoyed myself despite the rain and it was a great achievement.

"But the music wasn't really as promised - it didn't do what it said on the tin.

"I saw about four bands and three or four DJs - but when I say DJs, I just mean a bloke playing a CD. It wasn't overly impressive."

The music was set up strategically at purposely set tempos to allegedly boost runners' performances by 20 per cent.

Organisers promised runners 16 music stages along the course but due to the weather six were not opened at all.

Mr Dawson, a former student at Colfe's School, Lee, completed the run in two hours 20 minutes, but said the start was delayed by almost an hour due to transport problems.

Docklands finance worker Dan Kriss, 25, from Charlton, said: "There were inconsistent messages between the organisers and Transport for London.

"Many people would have had to walk considerable distances just to get to starting line. I walked about three miles."

Problems were also reported with the Jubilee Line, which suffered delays of an hour-and-a-half when a train broke down, and difficulty getting out of the O2 car park after the event.

However the majority of runners enjoyed the support they received from the sidelines.

City worker Enver Necip, 25, from Catford, only did one training run before the race, but said the cheers he received helped him get around in two hours and 20 minutes.

He said: "The support was immense, especially considering how wet it was. Lots of spectators turned up - it was appreciated and really spurred us on.

"There definitely wasn't enough music and the goody pack was a bit rubbish. Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed it."

The race was won by John McFarlane, who completed the course in one hour 10 minutes, and Birhan Dagne who took one hour 18 minutes.

n Tickets are now on sale for Run to the Beat 2009 at www.runtothebeat. co.uk/Event/Entry%20Info.aspx.

jules.cooper@ archant.co.uk


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