Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Zoom Yah! Yah! Indoor Marathon ~ Race Ratings (#46)

Tag line: 
"150 Laps with Family!!!"
Note: Sorry it took awhile to get this one out... I was waiting on the customized shirt they send us a few weeks after the race! 
Northfield, MN~ St. Olaf College
Type: Indoor suspended track
Year Running: 6th
Registration Fee: $65
Charity Race? N/A
Runners:  39 Finishers ... 10 Females
Available Races: Marathon Only
Average Finish Time: *4:17:17*
BQ %: Non BQ Race (no indoor marathons)

Overall Race Ratings: 4.7/5.0

Average Calculated Rating: 4.6/5.0
~ What a great race with an excellent group of people from the directors to the runners, right down to the spectators and lap counters. If you can get into this marathon... TRY! Minnesota is cold in winter but beautiful. The organization is exceptional (especially in emergency situations) and you really feel like family by the end. Thanks Coach Dick for an awesome race! 

Race Director: Let's play race director...
~ Not much you can do about the bathroom situation but that was really the problem I could see. The medal could be worked on but for a lower cost marathon it really wasn't bad! 

Coach Dick- Zoom yah yah race director!
Event Organization: 4.9/5.0 (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: ~45 Minutes 
Rental Car Required: Yes!
~ Minneapolis is the closest airport and is a pretty good size so (depending on where you're coming from) prices shouldn't be too bad to fly to this race. There are only 40 runners allowed at this race so most information is actually sent directly to us via email and not centrally located on the website including all the "FAQ's" and prior year results. The director does a great job of staying in touch with us in the weeks and days leading up to the race. The town of Northfield is SO cute. The main road reminds me of a quaint old western town. We stayed at the Archer house which was very decently priced and had a charm to it that you can't get at a super 8! 

The school itself (St. Olaf College) is amazing. In the dead of winter with stone buildings it reminded me of some sort of ice castle. It was absolutely stunning. Speaking of the school... remember dorm food in college? Bump that up to 5-star level cooking in a buffet style and that was our pre-race dinner. It was amazing... and amazingly hard not to gorge myself with "bad for me" pre-race food. Also... GREAT medical attention!!!!

The bad part of the organization? They can only allow 40 runners so before you go planning on this race, remember that it's lottery based!!! And the number of applicants is growing every year!

Race Organization: 4.5/5.0
Hydration Color/Type: None
Gel Type/Flavors/Availability:  None
~Post Race Food: .There was a lunch planned with some of the local running clubs, but with the emergency interruption of the race, most people just went home post-race. There were PB&J sandwich stuff to use as well as some cookies if you stayed around a little at the field house. 

The race itself is incredibly organized. They don't provide drinks or gels, but they do provide 4 tables at each corner of the track for the runners to store anything they could ever want! They also provide each runner with their own student! No!, not to take home but to count our laps for us. Not only did they count for us, but they also provided an incredible support system cheering for us every lap. The other great aspect of this race was that the director provided us a paper to put our names on and pin to our backs. This was great as we got to know each other, by name, as we rounded each lap. 

The one issue I had was that the bathrooms were a pretty good distance away, so if you were worried about time you were going to be SOL here (no pun intended). 

Course: 3.8/5.0
MarathonGuide Rating (NA- New Course)
Garmin Distance: NA
Type: 100% Suspended cement/carpet track
~ Elevation Gain/Loss: 0 gain/loss
~ Well, the course is pretty flat! haha... but seriously, it's actually a pretty good track for this type of event. It's large for an indoor track and it's more of a square than anything, so you're not leaning or making turns the whole time. If you're looking for some sort of PR here I'm not sure this is the place. Yes, it's flat, but if you're a faster runner you're going to have to pass on the outside, which could add a lot of distance onto your race! The marathon is measured based on the shortest route (the inner lane) but most of the time you'll spend running on the middle or farthest lane. The cement was not forgiving, but hey! It's an indoor track... what do you expect? If you're going to push yourself here... I would say concentrate on your "Indoor Marathon PR."

Spectators: 5.0/5.0
~ Our lap counters (the St. Olaf XC team) were amazing spectators.... holding signs individualized with each runners name, and even chanting finishers names as we rounded to the finish! Some people brought spectators and over the pasta dinner and the marathon we all got to know each other very well. The spectators cheered on every single runner by name as we came around. The names on our backs proved helpful for everyone-- runners, and spectators alike! 

 Pace Group: NA/5.0
~ Now that's just silly....

Runner/Corrals: 5.0/5.0
~ Runners in this race are amazing! I've never felt camaraderie in any marathon like this. We all get to know each other pretty well at packet pick-up and the dinner. But after 150 laps of passing each other we get pretty close! Everybody is super supportive of each other... the way these races should be! 

Expo: NA/5.0
~ This is far too small to have an expo, BUT side note: there is a table with Zoom Yah! Yah! Marathon gear for purchase at the packet pick up that are pretty nice! 

Swag: 4.0/5.0
~T-Shirts: The T-shirts are here (about 4 weeks post-race) and they're def a keeper! Each year they post a list of the results on the back of the shirt including every runners name, place, time etc. The shirt is a long sleeved cotton, high neck shirt for those cold winters. It's also very comfortable! 4.8

~Medals: The medal is a pretty basic circle of metal with the zoom yah yah "finisher" on the front. 3.2

~ Goodie Bag: No goodie bags at this race

Results: Stephanie
Chip Time: 3:52:01**
Place: Overall- 10/39, Gender- 3/10, A/G (F25-29)- 3/6
**Note: 15 min of stopped time

Happy Racing,
"Run to Win" - Meb


  1. Well done! What a great experience to run an indoor marathon! I love circuit races because the support and camaraderie are always fantastic. I'm running a 100km circuit race this October on a 5km course. I've done 12, 24, 48 hour and 6 days on 1km circuits. Love it! But I've never run a race indoors.

  2. Sweet shirts!!

    I can't imagine running for that long in a circle. You are a rock star!

  3. What a great experience. I love smaller races but this is the smallest of the small!