This was the question that hounded me as I chose which races to run for the summer while recovering from the BDM. Even if you’re not in recovery, you just can’t race every weekend you know. It disrupts your training schedule and it’s expensive. Just seven months ago, you could race for only P150.00. Those days are gone, and they’re not coming back.
These days when a race can set you back by no less than P250.00 you have to choose well. It’s as crucial as making the right song choice in American Idol. You have to ponder which race will most likely deliver on the four basics of a good race – accurate race course measurement, well-stocked water and , safety, and accurate timekeeping.
(Run to the Clouds Finishline at Zipline)
(Forum members www.sugbutriathlon.com)
The summer race calendar featured three big runs all organized and managed by runners – Run to the Clouds by members of Sugbutriathlon.com; Citi Run by Joe Franz Canizares and Waterfront Hotel; and Pinay in Action by Kenneth Casquejo and Annie Neric with their newly formed company Run Check.
(Citi Run March 21, 2010)
All three races delivered, providing a calling card of sorts for these three budding race directors and managers. Annie Neric said it best – “Kasi naman palagi tayong nagrereklamo sa ibang races na nasalihan natin. Sa dami nang nasalihan natin both good and bad, we know first hand what a good race should be.”
(L-R Marathon Foodie, Sen. Pia Cayetano, Annie Neric, Jane-Jane Ong)
But running and organizing a race can have so many variables that even the best race director and manager cannot control – lack of corporate sponsorship, red tape at the local government and profit-taking orientation of some race organizers who are all-too willing to collect fees but are unwilling to spend money on sufficient hydration and proper race marshaling.
(Pinay In Action Visayas Leg)
Still, these variables are no excuse for shabby race management. That’s why one perfect race is not enough. Now that the boys and girls of Sugbutri as well as Joe Franz, Kenneth and Annie have shown that they can be very good race directors, the next challenge for them now would be consistency. They must show willingness to stand-up for the runners who pay good money to join races and not compromise on the basics.
As runners, we can help improve the quality of race management in Cebu by providing feedback. Visit blogs that do race reviews and leave a comment. If you have Facebook, interact with runners at Cebu Running, Cebu Runners or go to the Sugbu Triathlon website. And if feedback seem to fall on deaf ears, you can always skip the races run by those who consistently fall short of our basic expectations. As runners, we have the power to choose.PACERS
For the first time since the running boom hit Cebu , a local race will have pacers to help runners hit their target finish time. What are they?
Pacers are experienced runners and marathoners tasked with keeping other runners on pace and if possible do even splits, which means no racing out at the beginning only to fade away at the end. They will encourage, motivate, cajole and if necessary, threaten the runners in the group to keep up and cross the .
Pacers don’t get paid to run as pacers. It’s their way of giving back and paying it forward helping runners reach their target finish time.
At the Great Lapu-Lapu Run, the 21-K runners will have two pace groups – those with target finish time of 2:00 to 2:15 led by Kenneth Casquejo and 2:16 to 2:30 group led by James Michael Go. You won’t miss them. They will be running with balloons. I only wish they had narrowed the range to ten minutes instead of fifteen and with more pace options at the sub two-hour range.
Speaking of targets, I’m hoping to set a new personal record and finish in 2:15 or better. The last time I raced 21K was in July last year at the Cebu elimination of the Milo marathon making it in 2:25.
To all runners joining the Great Lapu-Lapu Run , especially the 21K virgins, good luck, race well and seize the road!