I ended up entering this race at the very last minute having dithered about entering several times. I am definitely glad I did. It was a great race blessed with great weather.
Firstly a massive criticism - the directions to the event were poor and the promised road signage to guide to the car parks were equally as poor. Finally on arrival the car park was approx 20 minute walk from registration.
On arrival registration was incredibly easy after registration there was an area filled with a huge variety of freebies. Transition set up was easy and there were a multitude of volunteers to help - one critique is that some seemed to be enforcing no bags or boxes except in bag tent whereas others seemed to ignore this.
Pre-race briefing was really well managed with all pertinent information delivered clearly and concisely.
Swim was great a really simple out and back course - really easy to sight. After the swim there is approx a 200m run up to transition.
Cycle starts off on a gravel path which is slightly nerve wracking it then heads out of the castle grounds passing over some quiet intense speed bumps. It is once you have negotiated this you then almost immediately come across the first of the hills that become a nearly constant feature of this course. It is definitely undulating and some seemed to struggle with this. Unfortunately as I was unfamiliar with the roads I was a bit cautious on the downhill segments and so feel that if I did this course again I would dramatically improve my cycle time. Signage throughout the cycle course was great. Only point to note is that the roads were open and a traffic jam at one point did slow down my speed.
Run is in castle grounds - starts off again with a hill before levelling off. First 2km are marked and then the signage seemed to drop off leaving it as a bit of a surprise when you hit the final stretch.
Finish area was again well equipped with a multitude of recovery options.
Event village was well equipped and a fun recovery place.
Overall this race is challenging - I have done longer distances in other courses and not felt as challenged. However the organisation is for the most part impeccable being clearly run for with athlete enjoyment a high priority something that a lot of companies seem to forget / forego.