Overall Race Rating (weighted): 4.8/5.0
Average Calculated Rating: 4.5
~ This was a great race overall. It has been officially rated SFMC Small Race of 2009! I plan on going back again next year to make it my Kentucky marathon. Since this race runs in both Kentucky and West Virginia it can be counted as 2 states for the 50-state challenge!
~ The organization of this race was phenomenal... for the most part. The start went off with a shotgun (literally) without a hitch. The mile markers were all perfectly marked both on the road and on the side of the road. There were little blue hillbilly feel that marked the way. Water stops were frequent and had both water and powerade. There were "carb-boom" stops (which we all know how I feel) but at least something was provided. 1/2 marathon split off was not only clear, but was exciting to run through. At the end you received an ice cold towel immediately and the mason jar with your place (loved it)!
The bad side... the CARS! When we were on the road 1 lane was open, which is understandable with such a small group of runners. But many of the cars were FLYING through and would have to go to the runners side to move out of the way of oncoming traffic. Very dangerous! Also, my fellow blogging friend didn't receive his mason jar! :( Apparently there was some confusion and his was given to somebody else. Boo...
~ UNBELIEVABLE course! I loved it! I put pull details about the course in my Post Race Thoughts entry. But to sum it up... the course had a little bit of everything, you were shaded most of the time, very scenic... I would recommend this run to anyone!
~ This is a scaled score because of the size of the race. There weren't a TON of spectators-- but u can't expect that when you're in the woods and on long roads without houses. There WERE water stops every mile or so with people so you weren't without. Most of these water stop were "themed." And you voted at the end which was the best. I'm not sure what they received but there were a few cute stops... I liked the hillbillies (so apropos). Besides, you didn't really need a ton of people because the river, mountain, woods, were so pretty to look at!
Pace Group: DNE and didn't need...
~ No corrals of course, but the runners were SO nice! I think this is a big race for people trying to qualify for 50 states and for the marathon maniacs... both very social groups, and you could tell in the runners! I made friends with a 50-state-attemptee who was going about the same pace as me. I saw a very tall maniac taking lots of pictures and still keeping a sub 4:00 pace-- so jealous of those long legs! I also made friends with some guys at the end who were walking when I came up... I got them running and then one beat me!!! How rude!!! JK they were all very nice.
There wasn't an "Expo" for a marathon this size so I'll put the packet pick-up under here. I didn't get my packet until race morning because we got in so late. We got there pretty early... only about a dozen or so people were there and when I went to the table to check in and get my packet and t-shirt I was handed only a t-shirt and no packet! I pre-registered so you would think they would keep enough packets aside for those people who would pick them up on race day.
Also, lets talk tshirts. Now I KNOWWWW this is a small race without a ton of $$ HOWEVER, the t-shirt was both cotton AND ugly. Now I've seen the nice tech tee's with a really ugly picture and I've seen a cotton t-shirt with a really pretty shirt but I've never seen a cotton T with such an ugly picture... of a PIG... a large pig. That's pretttty much it. I'll post a picture of the shirt later. They still got a 3.5 because the packet pick-up and start was in front of a friendly grocery store that had hot breakfast items for the non-runners... aka Kyle! He claimed it was good... it looked sort of creepy to me, but I didn't have to eat it! I was also able to get bandaids that I had forgotten!
Results... Results are finally in!!!!!
Place: 52 Overall (Uh oooh gonna have the play the mason jar switcharoo game!)
Division: 2/7 ~ Apparently if you got top 3 in your age group they will send us plate for the back of our mason jars!!! Laura even got 2nd... Yay New York!!!! (Ok I know it says Cinci, but I spent 22 years in NY and 2 years here so I still call myself a New Yorker!!! Oh and Brittany, a fellow marathon blogger got 6th in our age group as well! You DID beat someone and you made great time! Good Job to all!!!