Scenic Downhill Push; Minor Wrinkles (General Comments)|
A Runner from Suburb of Minneapolis, MN, USA (5/7/02)
(Ran in '02). Course was quite scenic, with very little to spoil it; overall downhill, with biggest drops in first 6 miles and mi 17-22. I thought neither downhill segment chewed up my legs. Biggest cause of disappointment was the bike trail. Shade was good, but surface was uneven, path was winding, and there was a cruel uphill just before mi 24. A sign promised this hill's elimination in 2003. Some vehicles were let onto a supposedly closed-to-traffic portion. Course info could have been a little more detailed by mentioning more race features/amenities... the basic FAQ-type stuff. Glad I picked up my packet the night before, as it looked chaotic and sparsely staffed during race-morning pickup. Closed course and limited access limit crowds. Personally, I'll take fewer crowds if it means a safer course in a scenic, remote area. Those who did make it there were moderately enthusiastic. Decent post-race food selection that included ice-cream bars and OJ. Aid-station volunteers could've been thin in spots if a crowd went by... I had no problems and, overall, vols worked their tails off with a smile. Host hotel was reasonable (under $70) for a nice suite, location across street from finish line, and happy-hour and race-morning food/drinks. Several other nearby lodging options, including ones under $45. Seemed many people were from the area/region and drove up race morning.