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Forum: Dover Air Force Base Heritage Half Marathon
Return to Forum: Dover Air Force Base Heritage Half Marathon Race Info
Topic: You Get What You Pay For
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Posted By: runningone Posted: Jul 1, 2012 Reply
PROS:
The entry fee was cheap (but as you'll see further down, you get what you pay for).

The race was flat and could potentially make for a PR.

The medals are attractive.

CONS:
Upon arriving for Race Day registration, I was ignored so that the volunteer could finish telling her random story to the other volunteer.  only after two more people lined up behind me did the male to whom she was telling her riveting random story ask, "can I help you?"  I guess the registration form in my hand and my checkbook didn't answer his question.  So I did.  After handing my form and check over I learned that I would not receive a shirt.  So-o-o-o I guess it also wasn't apparent that in handing over my cash I might be expecting to receive what I paid for.  That shirts were given on a first come first served was not indicated on the registration form.

Ray, the organizer, has yet to respond to voicemail messages about the missing shirt.
 
It was hot--nothing organizers can do about that--and the "cool" water at the sags was barely that.  By the end--I was back of the pack--that "cool" water was warm enough to brew tea sitting on unmanned tables gathering flies in the cups.  The volunteers who had been at the tables, I guess, were tired of the heat like many of the runners who I was told backed out without finishing.  When I'd seen them before I hit the wall, though, they were friendly and supportive. 
 
The promised "tech" shirt was not available and no one returned calls to confirm how, if the race was not sold on the morning of the event, there were none.

The refreshments at the end of the race consisted of oranges, bananas, and pretzels in aluminum pans--perfect for sweaty grubby hands to grab, infect, and pass said infection along to other runners.  Individually wrapped items are better in a situation like this.  And worse, this offering was placed on a table outside in the sun.  The cooler of Gatorade had been iced and was thus a diluted version of  cool (not cold) Gatorade. 

The course is flat and boring--there are no spectators except the young men and women serving for the weekend; apparently the airmen in residence were all asleep.  When they woke up (toward the end of my race) I had to navigate them and their cars like the poorly marked mile markers (painting on the road that is) with caution and a grain o'salt.

The race did not start on time; there were some odd comments from the organizer that could've easily been cut short.  Considering the weather a prompt 8 a.m. start was critical--it was only getting hotter as he rambled.

CONCLUSION:
If you like small races and wanna try to PR, this might be worth it to try since it's flat and cheap.  But I would not run this race again.  It felt like a training run for which I happened to get a great medal.  For less, I couldve bought a tasty recovery brunch from a local restaurant as my reward.