Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Bimbler's Bluff 50K ~ Race Ratings (CT-#43)

Tag line: "50k .... plus a little"

Bimbler's Bluff 50k ~ October 24, 2010
Guilford, CT~ Genesse Preserve/Guilford School
Type: 99%Trail... plus a little grass and crossings
Year Running: 3rd
Registration Fee: $45 Early ($55 late)
Charity Race? No
Runners:  103 Finishers (111 Starters)... 25 Females
Available Races: 50k, Relay (limited)
Average Finish Time: NA
BQ %: NA

Overall Race Ratings: 3.4/5.0
Average Calculated Rating: 3.5/5.0
~ Overall this is a great trail/ultra race and would be great for beginners as it's not very technical. There are a few challenges in the course, but it's easy to find your way through the course without getting lost. Don't go for the swag or expect anything great, because they're lacking there. It's either expensive or a long drive to get to this race... but the pretty course, great spectators and support on the course are worth the trip!

Race Director: Let's play race director...
~ The race website could use a little help. It's not just for this race, but all the races up on that trail and in a blog format so it's hard to find information. When you do, you need to download excel files to read it. The information needed for an ultra is very important, so maybe this race needs it's own separate site. If we know a race is long, take off the initial loop around the school yard so it's closer to 31. The swag can definitely use a LOT of help. A medal would be great... or at least a decent t-shirt! 

Event Organization: 2.5/5.0 (now broken into 2 parts, see below as well) As far as "event organization" we'll include things like Host hotel, website use, ease of travel to the event and to the actual race, etc.
Distance from Airport to Expo/Race: Closest (and most expensive) is 11 Miles. Most are 40+
Rental Car Required: Yes!
~ Getting to the race is a little bit of a challenge. The closest airport is very expensive. However, there are a LOT of airports within 100 miles so you have lots of less expensive options that you can drive from. The website is a little all over the place as it is more of a blog... so posts for specific information relating to this race are hard to find! Once you do find the pages you need, however, they give you quite a bit of information, including a full description of every single section of the course. They also warn you adequately about the distances between aid stations and the suggestion to carry a water bottle. Leading up to the race they sent out information by mail and they even gave us two suggestions for hotels. 

Race Organization: 4.0/5.0
Hydration Color/Type: Various/Various. They had both heed and gatorade in different colors. 
~ I loved that they had so many options for drinks. They ALSO had cola, mountain dew, water (duh), and I think some kind of sugary drink
Gel Type/Flavors/Availability:  Various! As per usual with trails, they had a mixed assortment that looked like we all pooled our leftover gels from races. Always fun!
~Post Race Food: .DURING the race the aid stations were freaking STOCKED with food. They had everything from chips, cooked potatoes and candy to PB&J squares and fresh grilled cheese sandwiches they were making right there. A-MA-ZING! Post-Race they had a tent with anything you could need. There was a lovely woman making burgers by request (yum). 
~ Loved the food at the stops. They warn you, but there are only a handful of stops. The longest you go is about 9 miles without a stop. No rest stops because... well there is the woods. The course was long, which they actually also warn you about! 

Course: 3.8/5.0
MarathonGuide Rating NA
Garmin Distance: 32.6
Type: Open Trail/Single Track Trail
~ Elevation Gain/Loss: NA
~ This course was probably a 3 on a 1 to 5 scale for difficulty. Only about 15% of the course was VERY technical and probably 30% was single track. The difficulty came from the constantly rolling hills and the inability to see the ground with SO many fallen leaves. It gets a little extra for being a little more than a 50K! I added an extra mile when we got lost, but the extra .6 is all on the course! There was one are... The Bluff... that was non-runnable. That was probably 2-3 miles overall. The course was pretty well marked and there was only 1 area where we got lost. There weren't too many split areas that were hard to miss turns either. The whole area was covered very pretty northeast fall  foliage! 

Spectators: 4.3/5.0
~ Trail races are hard to get spectators to, but this group put on a great effort. All of the aid stations had a ton of people there as well as any road breaks across the trails. Not just the volunteers... but also spectators out there to catch their runners. And boy were they excitable! Of course it's not like the big road races... but it's not quite the same type of race!

 Pace Group: NA/5.0
~ None Needed

Runner/Corrals: 4.5/5.0
~ No Corrals needed. The runners were all pretty nice. You could tell this group runs together/against each other quite often. There was definitely some competition amongst the leaders. Most of the runners stayed after the finish, chatting and cheering each other on. 

Expo: NA/5.0

Swag: 2.0/5.0
~T-Shirts: The shirts are pretty bad. They are BRIGHT Yellow with a very unflattering design. The design is the same as the logo up top with the question mark. It almost looks like the computer that printed these had an error and it printed out the error question mark or something...?? On top of that they are a really bad material, itchy, stiff and generally not comfortable. 2.5

~Medals: No Medals. "Unique Finisher Awards" were hats, a shoe bag, and a Poron (sponsor) water bottle. -.5

~ Goodie Bag: No extras

Results: Stephanie
Chip Time: 5:46:36
Place: Overall- 22/103, Gender- 5/25, A/G (F25-29)- 2/4

Happy Racing,
"Run to Win" - Meb


  1. Hey! Congrats on your acceptance into Boston! I got mine too :)

    Question for you. In your training, how do you avoid injuries? I had a very depressing and unsuccessful spring season, and so far, a great fall. Now I am dealing with a touch of tendonitis in my foot - probably from overtraining, and I know better. But, it got me thinking. You run a lot of back to back weekends and seem to be OK...and your times are great. What is your secret?

  2. Thanks for your advice! I am going to look into new shoes...I do a ton of yoga (I actually teach it part time) so I'll be adding more strength moves into my flows :)