Sunday, July 25, 2010

The Three P's of a Race...

Piss Poor Production.

The three P's of a race that you should avoid at all costs.

With yesterday's early am thunderstorm's that rolled through our area and wrecked havoc  the race could have been canceled. Instead it was delayed by a half hour. The only way we found this out was by asking at check in because the people at check in weren't giving that information out freely. The check in was a mess because there were no signs telling people where to line up for their specific race: 5k, 10K, half marathon or inline skating race. Count them 4 events going on in ONE area.

None of the volunteers for the race were identifiable as someone with the race organization. No matching shirts or hats saying they were with the race. Maybe that wouldn't be a big deal if the volunteers and spectators weren't blending together on the roadway.  There were spectators just hanging out in the roadway blocking the course so when trying to figure out where to go was a huge cluster. The course direction markers were small and all looked the same for each event. Having volunteers that were identifiable would have been good if the volunteers actually had knowledge of the course. We had asked numerous people who said they were with the race what direction to go in only to be turned around. One man even showed us a map and said if you can figure it out good luck. Say what?

So with getting lost on the course a couple of times and trying to figure out the signage, the course people who told us to get off the road because the inline skaters were doing their thing, the empty water stations, no race officials coming up behind us checking on people or the route (NEVER saw anyone in 13.1 miles!!), to a poor girl who had to hitch a ride back to the start line from a passerby because of the lack of support from the race organizers I can clearly say this was a PISS POOR PRODUCTION. After thinking about this the fact that there was NOT a single race official on the course anywhere to make sure people were ok was truly irresponsible of the race officials.

They get one big plus in their favor. The fact that even after it took us so long to finish (in the allotted 3.5 hours) that there was still food and cold water at the end was the only plus I can give them. I've been to 5k's that have run out and all they could say was "sorry."

I can understand if this was a first year event but it was not. This year was year 3 of this production but after looking closely at the results for the first 2 years it does not show half marathon running results. So maybe this was something they decided to add on for this year. Whatever they do I hope they think long and hard about that decision.


  1. I only did the 5K and had checked in the night before so I didn't have much contact with volunteers day of. We couldn't understand the guy with the bull horn for the life of us.

    I only did the 5K - it was my first so I really didn't know what to expect but I was very surprised that the water station was so early on in the run. And you are right, there was no volunteers along the course in case an emergency did happen.

    Congrats on your half marathon - you did it even with it being a piss poor production : )

  2. Congrats on finishing!
    Having volunteered at SEVERAL races and working closely with race directors--PLEASE send your comments to the director. They need specific feedback like this if there is ANY hope of making it a better race.