10 Gifts Every Race Director Would Love

But who wouldn’t want an endless roll of duct tape, really?

By: Dave McGillivray, for Runner's World

When I assembled this holiday wish list with my fellow race director Sean Ryan, we came up with a range of items, some practical and easy to find, and some that have yet to be invented. We hope you’ll find this list entertaining, even if you’ve never organized an event. Happy holidays, and happy running.

10. Zip Ties

A race director can never have enough, so we’d like a lifetime membership (plus free shipping) on BuyCableTies.com. We could also use a zip-tie fanny pack to store used ties in when cutting them off signs and posters after a race.

9. A Digital, WiFi- and Bluetooth-Enabled Measuring Wheel

Dorky, but useful—just trying to keep up with the ever-changing world of technology. 

8. An Endless Roll of Duct Tape

As with zip ties, we can never have enough. Duct tape is what holds a race together—pun intended.

7. GPS Jamming Device

We all know that GPS devices will often register a race distance longer than how the course was measured along the tangents (that is, the shortest possible route). That doesn’t stop runners from thinking the course was measured incorrectly when they don’t run the tangents perfectly.

6. Roof Rack Sleeping Space

Although I still personally feel that sleep is overrated, I suppose a race director needs a little of it every now and then, even when leaving the job site to do it isn’t practical.

5. Road Marking Vehicle

One of the most dangerous parts of our job is stenciling mile markers or turns out on a live course. This piece of equipment could help save lives—ours!

4. A Giant Moving Walkway Just Beyond the Finish Line

No matter how many times you ask spectators to move back or out of the finish area, they just don’t. This invention would move them out of the way.

3. An Automated Cone Placement Trailer

Races require thousands of road cones. There is a real device that does this—and it’s worth its weight in gold—but a robot would work, too. Anything to avoid humans having to undertake this huge task.

2. An ACME Disintegration Pistol for Runners Who Take All the Food at the Finish Line, Leaving None for Runners Behind Them

Greed in the refreshment tent is a no-no. It’s frustrating when some runners feel they can take as much as they can carry, leaving nothing for those in the back of the pack.

1. An Unlimited Porta-Potty Budget (One for Every Runner)

No explanation needed.