Out of 5
This was held at Bose in Stow, so plenty of parking to go around. Plus, being a small race, no problems at all.
I should have pre-reg'd, but planned on doing a different race. Sick daughter=closer to home. Anyway, relatively smooth. But, here's a pointer: put the blank reg for on a separate table so that people can fill them out before standing in line. They did have a course map, which is a plus.
I didn't have to use them. But, there were four PoJs, which was plenty for this crowd. Plus, some private nooks and crannies in the surrounding area to go in a pinch. Being a very local race, everyone could go before leaving for the race.
Road races, especially 5ks, are relatively simple affairs, and thus should be hard to screw up. Only a few essential elements are need:
1. Is it accurate in terms of distance
2. Are the miles marked and accurate
3. Is it "fair" or "honest", which means is it anything but flat. For a course to be fair or honest, it has to have some rolling hills.
The course fit the bill on all counts. My Garmin had 3.12 at the end (we'll give them the .02 for me not cutting the tangents enough. Miles 1 and 2 were marked and seemed to be relatively accurate. I didn't see Mile 3, so that could be added. The course rolled a little, which broke it up. Relatively straight forward without too many turns. The course was open to traffic, but the time of day and holiday meant there wasn't much traffic to be had. Overall, the course was nice for a holiday run.
There was also one water stop, but who cares in a 5k in November. One potential deduction for plastic water cup. DO NOT USE PLASTIC CUPS FOR A ROAD RACE!!! USE THE KIND THAT YOU CAN SQUEEZE WITHOUT HAVING THEM BREAK!!!!
Bagels, bananas, granola bars, water, etc. They tried to do the right thing by having coffee, but it was Dunkin Donuts coffee, and who likes that swill anyway?
This is where a lot of races drop the ball. Because there were walkers on the 5k course, we had to wait until EVERYONE was done. Took forever. Mostly everyone left. I stuck around because I give my daughter medals from races. Gotta get things rolling faster after a race. At least they broke up the age groups in 10yr increments and didn't double dip.
This race was conceived by two brothers who goto Nashoba Valley HS. They are part of the XC team that took 3rd at States. Proceeds goto a good cause, and they showed a lot of initiative in putting this thing together. Good for them!! You really can't complain about anything. They got twice the people that they expected, and that a lot of bodies doing something healthy. Nice job.