First new blog post in some time – hard to believe how time gets away on you. One of the Goats needs to get those creative juices flowing again and offer more insight to help the running race community grow and achieve greater participation!
Given the many conversations I have with race directors (and David Letterman’s retirement) I thought appropriate to share a top 10 list on Lessons Learned in Race Management. I will present in two separate posts so you get 10 to 6 today.
Number 10: Always have enough volunteers to direct runners out on the course. There should be someone (if possible) at every significant change of direction on the race route. Believe you me if there is a way for a runner to find the wrong path, it will happen. There is nothing more frustrating for a runner to have to make a quick decision as to route if there is an unclear direction change.
Number 9: Make sure the collection of participant data on race day is consistent with the needs of the race awards. If the race is giving out age category awards, giving the timer correct ages is important.
Number 8: When announcing a race start, advise race participants that quicker runners should be at the head of the line. This is just good race manners but I have seen some near bowl overs as quicker runners tried to side-step slower starters.
Number 7: Clearly communicate to runners that scrunching the bib (with affixed chip) into one’s pocket is not the best for chip detection by the timing sensors. I see this almost every race.
Number 6: Inform race participants through the online registration process that switching race categories, while permitted, requires notification to the responsible registration party. Race timing chips are inanimate objects and don’t know on their own if a 10K runner decides to switch to a 5K division.
So there are 5 good tips to help run a smoother race. 5 more are coming next week.