Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Post-Mission Inn Thoughts

Some post-mortem thoughts on Sunday's Mission Inn "Half" Marathon

* Throwing 'em Under: In case you missed it, Sunday's Mission Inn Half Marathon was not 13.1 miles but rather 12.3 miles. The reason why that happened? Race organizers seemed to throw the volunteers under the bus while also laying some blame on us runners. From a story in the local paper about the race:

“It was unintentionally shortened when the volunteers set up the last water station short of the turn-around,” event director Salynn Simon said. “Runners didn’t know and stopped there.”

I don't know... I've never been involved in organizing a race but if I'm part of the event organizers, I ride my bike through the entire course to make sure everything is tip-top. But whatever, this event seemed to go for the cheap way out and, well, we got ripped off .8 miles in the process.

* On The Cheap: We got jobbed in the distance, but it wasn't the only place we were ripped off. I never got a t-shirt. I registered late (race day morning) and I was so focused on the race that once I got my bib I went and tried to put it on. I don't recall anyone steering me towards a t-shirt. Maybe it's my fault, but still a simple "Don't forget the shirt" may have helped.

But the biggest rip was after the race. The medal did not indicate what year the race was and was identical to last year's medal. Hmm... perhaps they used leftovers from last year? And instead of water bottles handed to us, there were volunteers pouring water into cups. Seriously??? How about a full bottle of water for the person who just paid good money to run in your race? There was bananas and sliced oranges there for us but the lack of water bottles was troubling.

* What's Next? I have a post coming up on my 2012 race calendar but that was probably my last race of the year. Sad. My next race may not be until LA Marathon. Double sad. Not having a great experience then means that this memory will be fresh for awhile. Triple sad.

* Mission Inn 2012? Probably not. Now, this race is the Lopers' first race of the season so I will likely have a lot of friends out there for the event and possibly new runners, so I don't want to say for sure that I won't run in this race. However, I think I simple solution is in order - run it as a bandit. Probably not the half, but the 10K since that's the distance recommended for our first-timers. Whatever the case, I just can't bear the thought of giving that race my hard-earned money once again, at least not in 2012.


Angelina said...

This is such a bummer, and makes me glad I did not do the race this year. I did it 2008, 09 & 10. I like doing these local races annually, but this is a huge let down.

PS-Are we doing Run Through Redlands this year? I am itching for a new PR!

Amanda said...

I had a half like that this Sept. The course was not laid out well and the volunteers were too busy chatting,texting, or dancing to direct us. It was to benefit the food bank, but not a good race overall. =/