Overall Rating
Overall Rating (3 Reviews)
4
(3 Ratings)(3 Reviews)
DIFFICULTY
3
SCENERY
3.7
PRODUCTION
4
SWAG
3
The Sanlam Cape Town Marathon (42.2km) is a prestigious global city race open to a range of running enthusiasts from elite athletes to social runners. Along the spectacular route, you will take in the famous natural beauty of Cape Town’s mountains and sea, as well as many of the city’s … MORE
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Recent reviews

    Fitbrit FIRST-TIMER '15

    First let me say after having ran two oceans last year, I could see why you would expect this course to be as good as or at least very scenic. … MORE

    First let me say after having ran two oceans last year, I could see why you would expect this course to be as good as or at least very scenic. However , aside from the stadium start and a joyful corral starting area, you do get to see table mountain for a few miles but I wouldn’t call this race scenic or beautiful.

    Let’s go back to the start which was not very well marked and be careful not to enter the 10k corral instead of the marathon one which is much further away.
    Also we were told not to wear a shirt with any logo on it so I changed from my race raves shirt to a basic tank top but only to find everyone was indeed wearing some kind of logo or personal shirt with their own company or advertisement on theirs.
    Also there were as usual not enough Porto potties and the lines were very long.
    Now I don’t understand since we all wear chips, why everyone must get the same start time?
    I was near the back so 4 mins were added to my time. Just FYI.
    So back to the race with a very International crowd and 50 countries represented.
    After running through town you run out to a dirty dock area without any spectators except some homeless folks who just happen to be there.
    Around kM 3-5 is across train tracks and shipping area.
    Soon you approach a one way road which is narrow and again a few homeless people just looking surprised to see you.
    Then a transit bus comes down this long road and we are pushed to the side of the road as it tries to not hit one of us as it passes thousands of runners.
    The first water stop is well stocked with water bags and Coke but by mile 6-9 they have run out of water and I can tell you I was panicking as I carried none with me.
    I missed the sports drink electrolytes and found myself exhausted by mile 13.

    I also was surprised by 16kms to 21 Kim’s was a long steady climb which seemed like this hill would never end. I will admit my training or lack there of didn’t help much either but that’s another story.
    At the halfway point around the commons I think it was called were a few spectators and we did find water. From there we ran through some residential area and then into an area where traffic was. No road closures and we ran along a busy road with lots of traffic and people going about their own business.
    At this point I joined a pacer called Derick.
    He looked like he ran a sub 3 hour marathon but here he was pacing us slow folk and what a great job he did. There were about 40-50 people in the pace group chanting and singing . I knew if I wanted to finish this race I better jump on this train.
    One of the smartest choices I’ve made in a race. So from mile -5 onward to ran for 4 mins and walked for 30 secs. Sometimes I think Derick made up different times or I could have been delirious. This part of the race seemed easier than going it alone.
    We chanted , stretched our arms made each other laugh and for an amazing 9 miles I stayed with them.
    Then I noticed I was slightly ahead and I changed from a 4 to a 5 minute run and walked any hill during the last 10k and you will find some hills going through town .
    The last 3 kms were near the stadium and flat.
    I could see my friend Louann as I turned into the final stretch and into the stadium.
    I think I had never been so tired and relieved to see a finish line.
    There I was given a bottle of coke and a medal still wrapped in a bag.
    Bottom line this is an OK course it could have been better in terms of water and electrolytes.
    The race Marshals were great and many of them. There are some spectators at the end and a few and I mean just a few here and there along the last 5 miles .
    Weather wise it was warm but not hot and overcast.

    I was too tired to check out food from what I could see you paid for food but I could hardly walk so there might have been a tent with refreshments.
    My hotel was about 2 blocks away so I made it back to my hotel to recover and lay down.
    What made this trip was the tours before and after so even if you had a bad day running you will surely enjoy Cape Town or a safari after.

    DIFFICULTY
    2
    PRODUCTION
    3
    SCENERY
    2
    SWAG
    3

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    Donnald69 FIRST-TIMER '15

    A great city to run in, but don't expect any crowd support. The first 20ish miles, the few spectators we came upon, were probably more surprised to see us than … MORE

    A great city to run in, but don’t expect any crowd support. The first 20ish miles, the few spectators we came upon, were probably more surprised to see us than we were to see them. The final 6 miles, there were lots of spectators. The race is a fairly flat course, although there are a couple long hills, just not super steep. The expo, although small, was one of the most organized expos I have ever seen.. You enter at one end, and how the expo is set up, you literally walk through every single display that is at the expo. Kind of set up “IKEA” style, for those that have been to Ikea. The T was given at the exp, and was of okay quality, nothing special. The medal was also nice, but of no special significance. The truly best part of the marathon was the city itself. Cape Town may be set in one of the most beautiful settings on earth. Definitely a beautiful city. Run it for the scenery, not for the spectators or the swag.

    DIFFICULTY
    3
    PRODUCTION
    4
    SCENERY
    4
    SWAG
    3

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    amichellemac FIRST-TIMER '14

    Let's start this review with a disclaimer. I've been distance running for many years now, and what I look for in a race has evolved over the years. No longer … MORE

    Let’s start this review with a disclaimer. I’ve been distance running for many years now, and what I look for in a race has evolved over the years. No longer obsessed with speed or running increasingly challenging races, I now search for races offering soul enriching experiences in remarkable environments.

    After much searching, I’d settled on Cape Town as the race to complete the African leg of my quest to complete a marathon on each of the seven continents. It was the best choice for me because the city offers so much, the timing was ideal and there’s a multitude of adventurous side trips on offer.

    An ill timed injury put a wrench in my training plans, so I arrived in Cape Town in less than ideal shape, however it was certainly not the first marathon that I haven’t been ready for. Race day was very difficult in consequence, but not for lack of effort by the organisers. The bag drop area was well organised, and it was easy to find the appropriate corrals. Of course the porta potty lines were awful, as in any big city race. The race both started and ended near the soccer stadium they built for the 2010 FIFA World Cup. The course meandered out into the country, with stunning views the whole way. The volunteers were simply wonderful, the few spectators along the course were exuberant. Most of all, I enjoyed getting to know the fellow runners along the route.

    In the end, this was the slowest marathon of my entire life, and the staff even tried to convince me to stop at the medical tent about 5k before the end. Knowing I’d never get going again if I stopped, I forged ahead. Despite feeling very ill for most of the race, I consciously savoured the entire experience, and had a great time making kindred friends along the way.

    Onto the more technical points: the race expo was small but sufficient, the course was well marked and water stations (where they provide water in small plastic bags, and soft drinks of all things) were plentiful. The single hill section goes on seemingly forever, but the rest of the course is pretty flat.

    My favourite part of the race was certainly running along the shoreline for the last 10k or so. It’s a wonderful area of Cape Town and the views are simply phenomenal. Running along Table Mountain was also the experience of a lifetime and one that’ll enrich your spirit.

    This race, much like Cape Town itself, has a lot to offer, for runners both fast and not so fast, considering both the eight hour time limit and the opportunity to test your mettle against some of Africa’s top distance runners. I certainly wouldn’t equate it to a typical big city marathon in North America or Europe, and that’s what drew me to it. It’s got a uniquely African character, unparalleled scenery and an opportunity to connect with some great people.

    If you do go, I highly recommend considering a wildlife safari and a shark cage diving expedition. All in all, one of the three best trip experiences of my life.

    DIFFICULTY
    4
    PRODUCTION
    5
    SCENERY
    5
    SWAG
    3
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