Post Bridge Run Race Rant

The Cooper River Bridge Run happened almost month ago and this race update/rant is way overdue!  If you have read any of my previous posts you would know that I had high hopes for this year’s CRBR and planned on recording a huge 10k PR in less than 40 minutes.  My official time……..41:28.  In defense of my poor performance, the director and coordinators of the CRBR had a poor performance of their own.

Beef #1: No water for runners prior to the race.

Last year’s CRBR had and abundance of Aquafina that was handed out left and right by volunteers!  I expected the same this year only to arrive to no water bottles or water fountain.  I would’ve ran to the gas station close by, but OH YEAH, my debit card and cellphone were with my lovely girlfriend Diana who was waiting patiently for me at the finish line….It’s ok I thought, the race will start any minute and I’ll just hit the first water station and coast the rest of the way to the finish line…… right?

Beef #2:  Delayed start.

I understand races have delays, but an HOUR is a long time to wait….especially when you’re being told the whole time that the race is going to start any minute.  If they would have given us a straight answer like, “Sorry folks but we won’t be able to start the race for at least an hour because we hired a dumb ass that left 5,000 runners on buses on the other side of the bridge.” then  maybe instead of waiting in the corral staring at my watch and jumping up and down, I COULD HAVE BEEN SEARCHING FOR WATER!!!!  Instead, we waited while the temperature, along with our tempers, began to rise…

Beef #3:  No water post race….

Finally, an hour later the race began and I was so eager to get it over with, I decided to skip the first two water stations and get some later at mile 4 on the other side of the bridge.  I had a good 6:10/ mile pace going into the Bridge, but I fell back to an 8:30 pace going up the Mt. Pleasant side.  I knew I should’ve done more hill training, but I can’t afford the time to go train at the bridge, and there aren’t many hills, other than than the bridge, in Charleston. I thought I would make up some time on the down hill side but wasn’t able to push the pace like I wanted to.  I was greeted at the bottom of the bridge with the motivating sound of African hand drumming, which I did my notorious air drum while running dance to cheer myself up. I’m sure it cheered the Afrikaans musicians up to see a skinny white dude playing air drums too….  I was also greeted at the bottom by volunteers with plenty of water.  I pushed through the last two miles with much appreciated help from the crowd and finally crossed the finish line……

Only to see one volunteer passing out water, and of course she only had two left and I was unable to snag neither.  Confused, thirsty, and tired, I found my girlfriend Diana and began to apologize for the late start and for the fact that she was going to be late for work.  I also began to grow more and more frustrated when I couldn’t find any water.  Last year they had volunteers passing out waters everywhere.  I finally found the trucks that had the water on them……about 100 yards away from the finish line.  They were being unloaded and seemed to be very disorganized.

I stuck around and talked to some other runners that also expressed the same feelings I had about the race.  It was comforting to know that I wasn’t the only person that didn’t perform to their potential.  I understand that this is a big race and there have been public apologies made by the directors.  That is nice and all, but actions always speak louder than words and there has been nothing done other than limiting the amount of entrants next year.  This may seem like a great idea, but I have a feeling the annual increasing participant streak just ran out anyway.

I propose a better idea:  Give us 2012 participants a discount to 2013’s race.  Even if it’s only 5% it would be welcomed in this “Support Your Locals” community.

Until next time, vacation, run, walk, shoot zombies and garden with a vengeance!

-Michael

My beer of the week:  Heineken…..It was Earth Day yesterday so I’m going green

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