Race #270 – Run for Green Half Marathon – Davidson, NC – 09/20/14

With two great half marathons that are always on the same day each year within driving distance from me on race morning, it’s a juggling act to decide which one I’ll run. The Run the Valley Half Marathon is a little bit longer drive but I really like the race, although this year I opted for the Run for Green Half Marathon, which I last ran in 2011. Run the Valley has a monster climb to the top of Morrow Mountain, but Run for Green has its own challenges and seems to include every hill in Davidson. Except for the relatively flat stretches on the greenway it’s pretty much a roller coaster for the rest of the race.

This time around I was only about a minute slower than in 2011, but that was the year I set all of my PR’s so it’s encouraging that I seem to be running at just about the same level three years later. It would be nice to keep that up for the next few years.

Pros:

  • Beautiful course (although hilly) that runs through upscale neighborhoods in Davidson and along the greenway.
  • Nice staging area for the race at The Village Green in downtown Davidson, surrounded by quaint shops and restaurants.
  • Good race size, with 370 finishers in the half marathon. I think that counting the 5k and 10k races there were 800-1000 runners, which is an ideal size to my way of thinking. I like small races too (under 150 or so runners) and sometimes larger races with thousands of runners, but the huge races can be a nightmare with logistics and trying to find friends afterwards. For this race I parked right across the street from the staging area.
  • Professional photography — photos were sorted and available online within 48 hours.
  • Chocolate milk recovery after the finish.
  • Timing by Queen City Timing (always one of the best for quick and accurate results).

Cons:

  • Uphill finish. It’s always better to be able to finish strong and fast when everybody’s watching.
  • Definitely more hills than normally expected in a race, especially one that’s not in the mountains.
  • No official race website. 

Click Here for Race Results

Click Here for Official Race Photos

My Stats:

Time:  1:36:42
Pace:  7:24
Age Group: 1 of  6
Overall:  31 of  370
Average Heart Rate:  166
Maximum Heart Race:  176
Age Graded Equivalent Time:  1:16:46 (77.14%)

There seems to be a new trend in haircut avoidance among runners. With Sonny Ali and Chad Randolph.

With running friends Dianne Allen and Kay Ziemer.

Margaret Hagerty is 91 years old and ran the 5k. She’s in the Guinness Book of World Records as the oldest person
to complete a marathon on seven continents.

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* RACE RATING *
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RACE COURSE
3 – Chip Timing: (3 points if yes)
2 – Starting Mat: (2 points if yes)
5 – Water Stops: (0)none  (2)normal  (5)extras [Gu, sports drink, etc.]
1 – Course Marking:  (0)bad  (1)good
4 – Course Scenery:  (0-5) 1=bad  and 5=fantastic
1 – Mile Markers: (0)poor or none  (1)normal  (2)with clocks or time called out
1 – Volunteers:  (0)too few  (2)good
7 – Finish line: (0-9)   0=bad  and 9=spectacular!
2 – Certified Course: (0)no  (2) yes
2 – Correct Distance: (0)no  (2)yes
1 – Partly or fully on unpaved roads:  (0)yes  (1)no

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

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

AGE GROUPS
2 – 3 deep awards: (2)yes (0 for anything less)
5 – 5-year age groups (5 points) (0 for anything less)
0 – 14 and under group (1)
1 – 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
3 – Grand Masters Category (50+):  (0)no  (3)yes
0 – Senior Grand Masters Category: (0)no  (5)yes

AWARDS
5 – Overall Winner Awards: (0)none  (2)yes  (5)excellent
5 – Age Group Awards: (0)none  (2)yes  (5)excellent (Gift certificates – $30, $20, $10)
0 – Door Prizes or Drawing: (0)no  (2)yes   (5-9)fabulous door prizes!
3 – Finisher Medals for All Finishers: (0)no  (3)yes  (5)really cool medals

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

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

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

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

PARKING
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

OTHER
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
0 – Kids Fun Run: (0)no   (2)yes
x – Miscellaneous not covered above: (-10 to +10)

TOTAL:  102

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