Race #353 – Novant Health 15k – Cornelius, NC – 10/02/16

2016-novant-health-15k-logoThe only local 15k I know of, the Novant Health 15k has been around for many years and was formerly called the LungStrong 15k. At 9.3 miles, the distance fits in nicely between a 10k and half marathon and provides a nice build-up for someone who’s training for a half marathon later in the fall. It’s a pleasant course that meanders through the Lake Normal peninsula, near the lake (although you don’t see it too often) and through upscale neighborhoods.


The race is popular but not so huge you get lost. This year there were 489 finishers in the 15k and 279 in the 5k. The only other 15k I’ve run is the Gate River Run in Jacksonville Florida, which is the national 15k championship and averages more than 20,000 runners, which is way more excitement than I need.

This was my slowest 15k ever, even slower than when I had a stomach virus at the Gate River Run in 2011. Could have been much worse this year though, so I’m happy with the result.

As usual for me over the past year or two, I took more walk breaks than I should. I think it’s because I just don’t have the same amount of stamina I had a few years ago when I was running my best times, but it might also be partially due to just not having the same amount of determination to keep going that I had a few years ago, when winning my age group seemed a lot more important than it does now. Having said that, I did take a peek behind me a mile or so from the finish line and saw somebody I thought could be in my age group, and after that I managed to run the remainder of the race without another walk break, so maybe I’m still more competitive than I’d like to admit. I would find out later that it was Dawson Hancock, who indeed is in my age group and who beat me at the Charlotte 10-Miler early in the year by about a minute. I managed to hang on and get him by 7 seconds. We were both beaten by several minutes by super-fast Tim Richter, who is now 60, but since Tim won Grandmasters I bumped up to 1st in the age group and Dawson bumped up to 2nd.

Thanks to Bobby Aswell for the finish line pic!

Race Number:  353


Race Name:  Novant Health 15k and 5k


Location:  Cornelius, North Carolina (Lake Norman)


Date:  October 2, 2016


Race Rating:  102


Winners (Top 5):



  • Gain:  304 feet
  • Loss:  299 feet


Weather at Start:  Sunny, 54 degrees, 94% humidity.

Click Here for Full Race Results

Click Here for Race Photos from Marathon-Photos.com


My Stats:

  • Time:   1:11:13
  • Pace:   7:39
  • Age Group:  2 of 9
  • Overall:  57 of 489
  • Average Heart Rate:  160
  • Maximum Heart Race: 177
  • Age Graded Equivalent Time:  55:58 (73.11%)
I was happy with my 5k and 10k splits, but the last 5k was kinda dismal.


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
2 – Mile Markers: (0)poor or none (1)normal (2)with clocks or time called out
2 – 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

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
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

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)
5 – Finisher Medals for All Finishers: (0)no (3)yes (5)really cool medals

4 – Food for Race Participants: (0-10 with 5 being average)
7 – Entertainment: (0)no (1-9)yes
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
4 – Design: (1-5)
3 – Material Quality: (1-3)
0 – Discount for no-shirt option: (0)no (2)yes

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

Photos were expensive, but maybe worth it if they caught you looking great.

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 – 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
0 – Miscellaneous not covered above: (-10 to +10)

TOTAL:  102

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