race director

TIPS FOR DEALING WITH ROAD RACE MANAGEMENT PROBLEMS

TIPS FOR DEALING WITH ROAD RACE MANAGEMENT PROBLEMS

No matter how meticulous your planning, sooner or later something unexpected is going to occur that is going to require you to make on-the-spot decisions. Veteran race directors Dave McGillivray and Sean Ryan offer some tips on what to do (and not do) when disaster happens. 

RUNNER CLINICS

RUNNER CLINICS

When I'm hired to direct a race, the client will often ask, “Do you think we should put on a clinic for the runners, too?” I am always torn as to the best way to respond to this. I’ve been to many clinics that were well organized and well attended but I’ve also been to as many or more that bombed, especially in terms of attendance of participants running in the race. It can be incredibly embarrassing to both the organizer and the presenter to be talking to an empty room with only six pigeons and three squirrels present.

WHO OWNS AN EVENT?

WHO OWNS AN EVENT?

There was a time when I thought a road race could never be sold. Who would buy it and what exactly would the buyer be buying anyway? Today, however, races are now being bought and sold left and right. Boy, did I miss the bus on that one.

RACE DAY: YOUR LEAD VEHICLE PROGRAM

RACE DAY: YOUR LEAD VEHICLE PROGRAM

As event directors, our focus tends to be on making sure our course is an accurate and safe one, that we have plenty of water to distribute, that our race starts on time and that we deliver quick and accurate results…all extremely important aspects of producing a successful event.

WHAT DO I NEED FOR SIGNS?

WHAT DO I NEED FOR SIGNS?

I used to think the more signs (operational and functional signs, not sponsor signs) at an event, the better. However, throughout the years, I’ve come to realize more is not necessarily better, and it's not simply the number of signs but many other factors that come into play. 

THE LAST RUNNER

THE LAST RUNNER

When managing our races, we tend to focus a lot on the elite leaders in the race: we make sure they go in the right direction, they follow our lead vehicles, and they're cheered on by thousands of spectators. However, what about the last runner(s)?

A ROAD RACE DIRECTOR SHARES HIS PET PEEVES ABOUT RUNNERS

A ROAD RACE DIRECTOR SHARES HIS PET PEEVES ABOUT RUNNERS

I am a race director, but I was a runner before I was a race director, so I’m not totally the enemy. Frankly, I think of myself as a runner first and then a race director.

I WANT TO START A RACE. WHERE DO I START?

I WANT TO START A RACE. WHERE DO I START?

I am trying to start a half-marathon, 10-K, and 5-K event. The proceeds will benefit a program for veterans with post-traumatic stress at a veterans hospital. I'm hoping that about 1,000 people will enter.

HOW CAN I GET A JOB AS A RACE ORGANIZER?

HOW CAN I GET A JOB AS A RACE ORGANIZER?

I've been a runner for most of my life, and I love running in races. I've volunteered at a handful, too, and recently realized I would love to make it a career—working for something like, say, the Rock 'n' Roll Marathon series. How should I go about meeting the right people and gaining the experience to do this?

HOW DO YOU HANDLE 'CALLS OF NATURE'?

HOW DO YOU HANDLE 'CALLS OF NATURE'?

I've heard that when the "call of nature" comes -- at the worst time and far from any convenient or appropriate location -- runners in a race often relieve themselves in a relatively public manner. What's a race director's policy toward this? How do you plan for it?