Race #226 – Matthews Labor Day 5k – Matthews, NC – 09/02/13

Legend has it that in this 5k race that crosses two sets of railroad tracks, there’s a good chance that you’ll get stuck waiting for the train to pass. Several people had told me that it had happened to them a number of years ago. As we reached the first set of tracks I thought about the legendary train, and figured I dodged the bullet yet again. But wouldn’t you know it, just a minute or two later you could hear the train whistle. I wasn’t sure what was going on in back of me but I figured that at least half the runners in the race hadn’t reached that point yet, so they were stuck. I also knew that there was another crossing up ahead somewhere that took us back across that same track. Not knowing where that was, I hoped for the best, and by the time I reached the second crossing the train was long gone.

Not everybody was so lucky. I heard stories from several runners who had to stop and wait for the train. One lady told me she was one of the first ones stopped and she waited a minute and 26 seconds. That’s not a lot of time unless you’re in the middle of a road race. I was happy that I was one of the fortunate ones, but I felt bad for the ones who didn’t make it. But that’s life I suppose, and there are a lot of worse things that can happen in the grand scheme of things. At the awards the man who was announcing the winners just called it “part of the ambience.” The longer I run the less I worry about small annoyances like that, but of course I didn’t have to stop.

It’s 10 o’clock on the next Friday night as I write this and there’s another race tomorrow, so I’m just trying to get finished so I don’t have two races to write about. I didn’t wear my video glasses in this race because it had been raining earlier in the morning. The humidity was 97% also and it was kind of foggy so I decided to forego the glasses since they’re not weather resistant and I don’t want to have to replace them.

Click Here for Race Results

Facebook Pics:
(I’m not sure if you need to be friends with them to view the pics or not)…
Stan Austin (115 Photos)
Bobby Aswell (28 Photos)

Stan took this picture in the last half mile or so of the race.
Bobby took this finish line photo. You can probably tell it was a little bit humid.

My Stats:

Time:  21:20
Pace:  6:52
Age Group:  1 of  12
Overall:  13 of  194 (6.7%)
Average Heart Rate:  165
Maximum Heart Race:  176
Age Graded Equivalent Time:  17:00  (75.85%)


3 – Chip Timing: (3 points if yes)
0 – Starting Mat: (2 points if yes)
2 – Water Stops: (0)none  (2)normal  (5)extras [Gu, sports drink, etc.]
1 – Course Marking:  (0)bad  (1)good
2 – Course Scenery:  (0)bad  (2)pleasant  (5)extraordinary
1 – Mile Markers: (0)poor or none  (1)normal  (2)with clocks or time called out
2 – Volunteers:  (0)too few  (2)good
5 – Finish line: (0)mediocre  (2)not bad  (5)very good  (7)spectacular!
0 – Certified Course: (0)no  (2) yes
2 – Correct Distance: (0)no  (2)yes
1 – Partly or fully on unpaved roads:  (0)yes  (1)no

2 – Cost:  (0)expensive  (2)reasonable  (5)cheap!
3 – Race Day Registration:  (0)no  (3)yes

2 – Posted promptly online:  (0)no  (2)yes
1 – Clear link on website:  (0)no  (1)yes

2 – 3 deep awards: (2)yes (0 for anything less)
0 – 5-year age groups (5 points) (0 for anything less) (10-year groups for 50+)
1 – 14 and under group (1)
0 – 65+ group (1)
1 – 70+ group (1)
2 – Top Overall M/F:  (0)none or first only  (2)top 3 or better
2 – Masters Category(40+): (0)no  (2)yes
0 – Grand Masters Category (50+):  (0)no  (3)yes
0 – Senior Grand Masters Category: (0)no  (5)yes

2 – Overall Winner Awards: (0)none  (2)yes  (5)excellent
2 – Age Group Awards: (0)none  (2)yes  (5)excellent
9 – Door Prizes or Drawing: (0)no  (2)yes   (5-9)fabulous door prizes! (Good stuff!)
0 – Finisher Medals for All Finishers: (0)no  (3)yes  (5)really cool medals

4 – Food for Race Participants: (0-10 with 5 being average)
8 – Entertainment:  (0)no  (1-9)yes (with Matthews Alive festival)
2 – Finisher times posted after race:  (0)no  (2)yes

2 – Porta Potties:  (0)no  (1)limited, long lines  (2)plentiful
0 – Indoor Restrooms: (0)no  (1)limited, long lines  (2)plentiful

2 – T-Shirts: (0)no  (2)yes
2 – Design: (0)not good  (1)not bad  (2)nice  (5)beautiful! (Long Sleeves — Nice shirt)
0 – Material: (0)cotton  (2)technical fabric
0 – Discount for no-shirt option:  (0)no (2)yes

0 – Professional Photography: (0)no  (5)yes
x – Prices: (0)expensive  (2)reasonable  (5)cheap!
2 – Free Photographs (newspaper, etc.):  (0)no  (2)yes  (5)lots of free pics!

2 – Close to Start:  (2)yes  (0)no
2 – Close to Finish:  (2)yes  (0)no
2 – Plenty of spaces:  (2)yes  (0)no
2 – Free Parking:  (2)yes  (0)no

0 – Dedicated race website (0)no  (2)yes
2 – Results or link to results posted on website:  (0)no  (2)yes

0 – Shelter from Inclement Weather (needed or not): (0)no  (2)yes
2 – Swag (free socks, water bottles, etc.): (0)no  (2)yes, some  (5)excellent
0 – Part of race series or Grand Prix:  (0)no  (2)yes

TOTAL:  82

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