Race #348 – The Burn 5k Labor Day Race – Gastonia, NC – 09/05/16

2016-the-burn-richard-downhillOf all the races I run each year, this one is the course I’m most familiar with. Just about every Thursday afternoon a handful of folks from my running group trudge our way to the top as best we can, regroup, then head back down Gaston County’s biggest climb. Although I’d prefer running a pancake flat course, this race does provide a benchmark for how I’m doing in relation to previous years. It’s only the third year of the race, and I skipped the first one so all I have to compare is last year. I was happy to finish only 14 seconds slower than last year’s race.


We’re over halfway through the Gaston County YMCA race series and the only race I’ve missed so far was the first race of the series. With this race I jumped up a spot into a tie for 2nd overall in the Male category with Jerry Price, just behind speedy 59-year-old Jimmy Glover. Jerry is my age (64) and we don’t have a realistic chance to catch Jimmy in the series, but it’s nice having three old guys at the top of the heap for the time being.

With this race I moved into a tie for 2nd place in the Overall Male Category of the Gaston County YMCA race series!


Race Number:  348


Race Name:  The Burn – Labor Day 5k


Location:  Crowders Mountain (Gastonia, North Carolina)


Date:  September 5, 2016


Race Rating:  67


Winners (Top 25):  *Steve McClure set a new course record at 21:52.



Course: Crushed gravel all the way. It’s out-and-back, several hundred feet up Crowders Mountain, then turn around near the top (1.55 miles) and return downhill to the finish line. Much of the course is too steep for most runners to climb without walking. The steepest part is just after you hit the 1-mile mark in the race. Coming down you have to slow yourself down to prevent losing control.


Elevation: I’ve heard that GPS watches have a hard time getting elevation correct but here’s what mine shows for this race. I suspect it’s off because there’s a difference of about 50 feet in Gain/Loss even though we started and finished at the same spot.



Weather at Start:  Sunny, 64 degrees, 88% humidity.


Click Here for Race Results


My Stats:

  • Time:  26:31
  • Pace:  8:32
  • Age Group:  1 of 4
  • Overall:  10 of 74
  • Average Heart Rate:  159
  • Maximum Heart Race:  168



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
3 – Course Scenery: (0-5) 1=bad and 5=fantastic
0 – Mile Markers: (0)poor or none (1)normal (2)with clocks or time called out
2 – Volunteers: (0)too few (2)good
6 – Finish line: (0-9) 0=bad and 9=spectacular!
0 – Certified Course: (0)no (2) yes
2 – Correct Distance: (0)no (2)yes
0 – Partly or fully on unpaved roads: (0)yes (1)no

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

2 – Posted online within 24 hours: (0)no (2)yes
1 – Easy to find results: (0)no (1)yes

2 – 3 deep awards: (2)yes (0 for anything less)
5 – 5-year age groups (5 points) (0 for anything less)
1 – 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
0 – 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

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

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

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

2 – T-Shirts: (0)no (2)yes
3 – Design: (1-5)
3 – Material Quality: (1-3)
0 – Discount for no-shirt option: (0)no (2)yes

0 – Professional Photography: (0)no (5)yes
x – Prices: (1)expensive (3)reasonable (5)cheap
0 – Free Photographs (newspaper, etc.): (0)no (1-10)yes

0 – Close to Start: (2)yes (0)no  (Remote parking about a half mile away… Ride bus or walk to start)
0 – Close to Finish: (2)yes (0)no
2 – Plenty of spaces: (2)yes (0)no
2 – Free Parking: (2)yes (0)no

0 – Shelter from Inclement Weather (needed or not): (0)no (2)yes
0 – Swag (free socks, water bottles, etc.): (0)no (2)yes, some (5)excellent
2 – 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:  67

Please like & share:

Leave a Reply