Event and Race Reviews
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Las Vegas Marathon
(Las Vegas, Nevada)
The date... It was held Dec 4th 2005. So, I am assuming they are planning on making it the first Sunday of Dec....
The course... It is flat. One underpass to run up, and one overpass to run up... Yeah, that is the summary of all the uphill legs.
The conditions... Being from the cold and damp east coast. I admit I was concerned about possible problems with the change of elevation (from 0' to approx 2000' ASL), the drier air, and it being far warmer than temp., I was currently running in. (Thanks for the concern, goof). Speaking for myself I did not have any problems whatsoever, luckily Nova Scotia had a warmer than usual November and Nevada was cooler than normal that weekend, meaning I was running in conditions I was currently used to prior to my taper.
Pre-race pick up (at the expo)... The race kit pick up, answers to my 2 simple questions, and goodie bag pick up was amazing fast and organized. This was due to good signage, but mainly the massive numbers of volunteers. (Literally less than 3 minutes).
Volunteers... I would have to give the highest mark possible here. Literally 50 to 100 people at a water station... Kudos
Security... I must admit, I have have not run a massive amount of races... and by no means am I trying to pick on other races, but this is the only race where the route was "CLOSED" to traffic. I never saw a car anywhere close to any runner. The LVPD, State troopers and other police forces, as well as security guards, kept all types of traffic away from the runners, including pedestrians and bicycles.
Water Stations... 25 of them... Yeah thats right, 25 of them very close to the mile marker if they were not exactly at the mile marker. Water was in a white cup (I think), gatorade was in a green gatorade cup. You knew what you were reaching for. Nice. At mile 13 and 18 there were gels available. Also at every mile marker plenty of port-a-potties and clocks.. You could easily leave the armin at home, and run it with a pace band.
The finish... Again plenty of volunteers. You got your chip off, a medal, and foil blanket in a mater of seconds. The line up for the finsher pic was quick too, unless you wanted a showirl, or Elvis in your pic... be prepared to wait.
OK.. so, the small things I didn't really like. But can be overcome with a little tought.
The are no water fountains in Vegas it seems. If you forget your water bottle in the early AM, you will need to buy a bottle of water from a casino. Or if you are like me and drink a couple of bottles (well refilling one bottle a couple of times) you have to squeeze through the bathroom lines to get a drink. Bring a couple of bottles of water. Not one!!
No real amount of food at the finish... A banana, an orange an a tiny bag of trail mix. Plan and bring a post race snack!!!
The final thing is small too... The was an elite runner corral, a sub 4 corral (you must have finished sub-4 prior to that day) and everybody else corral... Well, this was nice idea... But, it didnt work that way... perhaps there was signage I missed, it was dark, (pre 6 o'clock) But basically, I said "hi, what time are you aiming for?" But in the small circle around me I went from 3:30 to Sub 5 to "I just want to finish"... Too many walkers were seeded up front. I know, its a small thing, but it did bug me.
Would I do it again? Yes, oh yes.. Vegas is not cheap though.. prehaps the odd numbered years....