I decided to bypass the Blue Points 5k in Charlotte today and instead headed for Casar, North Carolina, population 308, for the Run From Knobby 5k. The town of Casar was originally named Caesar (as in Julius Caesar or Caesar salad), but when they applied for a post office the name was misspelled and it officially became Casar. Knobby is the area’s legendary ape-like character who seems to be a distant cousin of Bigfoot, and over the years there have been numerous Knobby sightings by area residents.
About a month ago Angie, one of the Shelby runners who we’ve become friends with through the local races, asked me to post an event for the race on Facebook. It was her first attempt at directing a race, and since then she’s been transferred to Florida and has already moved, so I wasn’t sure what to expect. Turns out that it’s nice to have friends who are willing to help and are knowledgeable about races, and the race went over without a hitch. My own thought was that in such a remote location and little lead time and hardly any advertising this would be a tiny race, but it was a real success with 130 registered runners, which is great for a first-year race in an out-of-the-way location.
The race route was beautiful but tough, winding around the foot of the South Mountains, and at times it felt more like a roller coaster than a public road. There were some huge hills and very few flat areas, but it was an out-and-back course so anywhere that you had to go uphill you also had the benefit of the downhill when you were running in the opposite direction. Still, lots of hills tend to slow people down and there were very few Personal Records being set. I felt really good during the race, finishing 9th overall with a time of 21:03. Of note, at the turn-around point halfway through the race there was Knobby himself, giving a high five to everybody as they turned to go in the other direction.
3 – 1-10 Website (Information, results, registration, photo links, etc.) (Facebook only)
5 – 1-10 Awards (Quality of medals, trophies, etc.) (1 to 10)
7 – 1-10 Awards Presentation (PA system, winning times, etc.) (1 to 10)
5 – 1-10 Food for Race Participants (1 to 10)
6 – 1-10 T-Shirts (1 to 10 with 5 being average)
4 – 4/6 Part of Race Series (Grand Prix, etc.) (6=Yes and 4=No)
0 – 0/5 Professional Photography (5=Yes and 0=No)
4 – 4/6 Chip Timing (6=Yes and 4=No)
3 – 3/7 Certified Course (by USA Track & Field) (7=Yes and 3=No)
7 – 1-10 Course (1 to 10 with 5 being average)
7 – 1-10 Parking (1 to 10 with 5 being average)
5 – 1-10 Entertainment (1 to 10 with 5 being average)
10 – 0-10 Age Groups (10 if 5-year groups; 0 if 10-year groups)
5 – 0/5 Indoor Shelter from Elements (0 if none; 5 if provided)
5 – 1-10 Bathroom Facilities
TOTAL – 76
Age Group: 1 of 4
Overall: 9 of 126