My Profile

@M-Hall

Knoxville, TN Raving since 2020 Active 2 hours, 55 minutes ago

About Me

  • Running club(s):

    Knoxville Track Club

  • Rave race:

    Main 2 Main Marathon

  • Race that's calling my name:

    Catalina Island Marathon

  • I run because:

    of the book Born To Run.  The idea really is true, I lost 40 lbs and started running again at age 60 after giving up 5k’s in my early 40’s because of a sore knee.  The book is a great story but not a ‘how to’ so I drilled down on the things mentioned in the book, learned (Pose method, Luna sandals, cross training, nutrition), and ran.

My Races

Organize, track & review your races and personal bests here.

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Half Marathon

Marathon

Ultramarathon

(Marathon or Ultra) + Half

Marathon + Ultra

Other

Future Races

Personal Bests (8)

Race Distance Location Date Result
Marathon Warner Robins, GA Feb 13, 2021 4:41:52
30K Kingston, TN Feb 20, 2022 4:21:30
Half Marathon Johnson City, TN Sep 26, 2021 2:04:48
11 Miler Maynardville, TN Mar 13, 2022 3:02:48
7 Miler Oak Ridge, TN Apr 16, 2022 1:19:51
10K Strawberry Plains, TN Jan 30, 2021 53:29
4 Miler Knoxville, TN Sep 19, 2021 34:53
5K Clinton, TN Sep 26, 2020 25:21

Future Races (65)

Race Distance Location Date Paid
7 Miler Oak Ridge, TN Jul 9, 2022
Marathon Anderson, SC Jul 16, 2022
5.5 Miler Knoxville, TN Aug 14, 2022
Marathon Wausau, WI Aug 20, 2022
Marathon Lincoln City, IN Sep 18, 2022
10K Oneida, TN Sep 24, 2022
Marathon Levis, Canada Oct 1, 2022
Marathon New Berlin, IL Oct 9, 2022
5K Knoxville, TN Oct 15, 2022
5K Rocky Top, TN Nov 5, 2022
10K Knoxville, TN Dec 4, 2022
Marathon Harlingen, TX Feb 5, 2023
Marathon Urique, Mexico Mar 5, 2023
Marathon Wartrace, TN May 6, 2023
Marathon Santa Clarita, CA 2023
Marathon Akron, OH TBD
Marathon Bakersfield, CA TBD
Marathon Ennis, MT TBD
Marathon Big Sur, CA TBD
Marathon Bozeman, MT TBD
Marathon Brookings, SD TBD
Half Marathon Olive Hill, KY TBD
Marathon Avalon, CA TBD
Marathon Cheyenne, WY TBD
Marathon Elizabeth City, NC TBD
Marathon Denver, CO TBD
Marathon Lowell, IN TBD
Marathon Abilene, KS TBD
Marathon Ely, MN TBD
50K Bethera, SC TBD
Marathon Olathe, KS TBD
8K Germantown, OH TBD
Marathon Coudersport, PA TBD
Marathon Grand Forks, ND TBD
Marathon Omaha, NE TBD
Marathon Little Rock, AR TBD
Half Marathon Washington, IA TBD
Marathon Leavenworth, WA TBD
Marathon Waitsfield, VT TBD
Marathon La Pointe, WI TBD
Marathon Laramie, WY TBD
Marathon Idaho Falls, ID TBD
Marathon Frenchtown, MT TBD
Marathon Gering, NE TBD
Marathon Ouray, CO TBD
Marathon Lamoille, NV TBD
Marathon Marlboro, VT TBD
Marathon Upson, WI TBD
Half Marathon Woodville, AL TBD
Marathon Norwalk, WI TBD
Marathon Ashland, OR TBD
Marathon Oak Island, NC TBD
Marathon Green River, WY TBD
Marathon Reston, VA TBD
Marathon Brighton, CO TBD
Marathon Shiprock, NM TBD
Marathon Cocoa, FL TBD
Marathon Springfield, IL TBD
Marathon Viborg, SD TBD
Marathon Oakridge, OR TBD
Marathon Relay Springdale, AR TBD
Marathon Tupelo, MS TBD
Marathon Moapa Valley, NV TBD
Marathon Burlington, VT TBD
Marathon El Dorado, KS TBD

Past Races (38)

Race Distance Location Date Result My Raves My Performance
Marathon Williamson, KY Jun 11, 2022 5:35:08
Half Marathon Black Mountain, NC May 28, 2022 2:05:35
Marathon Wartrace, TN May 7, 2022 5:37:49
7 Miler Oak Ridge, TN Apr 16, 2022 1:19:51
11 Miler Maynardville, TN Mar 13, 2022 3:02:48
Marathon Urique, Mexico Mar 5, 2022 8:23:00
5K Norris, TN Feb 26, 2022 27:41
30K Kingston, TN Feb 20, 2022 4:21:30
5K Knoxville, TN Feb 12, 2022 26:26
Half Marathon Strawberry Plains, TN Jan 29, 2022 2:15:20
5K Maryville, TN Jan 16, 2022 32:27
Half Marathon Knoxville, TN Jan 8, 2022 2:05:11
Marathon San Antonio, TX Dec 5, 2021 5:16:58
Marathon West Monroe, LA Nov 7, 2021 5:17:51
Half Marathon Hendersonville, NC Oct 9, 2021 2:09:17
Half Marathon Johnson City, TN Sep 26, 2021 2:04:48
4 Miler Knoxville, TN Sep 19, 2021 34:53
Half Marathon Bird-in-Hand, PA Sep 11, 2021 2:08:55
5K Bird-in-Hand, PA Sep 10, 2021 31:00
5K Powell, TN Aug 14, 2021 27:12
10K Knoxville, TN Aug 7, 2021 59:15
5K Maryville, TN Jul 31, 2021 27:01
Half Marathon Charlotte, NC Jul 17, 2021 2:17:45
Marathon Hurricane, UT Jun 5, 2021 5:53:11
10K Knoxville, TN May 29, 2021 1:06:09
Half Marathon Maryville, TN May 15, 2021 2:20:12
Half Marathon Viola, TN May 8, 2021 2:24:44
Half Marathon Nashville, TN Apr 23, 2021 2:18:25
Marathon Warner Robins, GA Feb 13, 2021 4:41:52
10K Strawberry Plains, TN Jan 30, 2021 53:29
5K Norris, TN 2021 28:00
Half Marathon Knoxville, TN Dec 6, 2020 3:18:32
Half Marathon Pikeville, KY Nov 7, 2020 2:10:02
Half Marathon Lynchburg, TN Oct 24, 2020 2:10:20
10K Norton, VA Oct 3, 2020 1:17:39
5K Clinton, TN Sep 26, 2020 25:21
Marathon Osage, IA Aug 22, 2020 4:59:18
Half Marathon Crandall, GA Oct 20, 2019 2:24:26

My Raves

As fun as the reviews here say. Packet pickup at Belfry HS in KY was simple and fun on Friday. Plenty of information, a corkboard map to stick a pin … MORE

As fun as the reviews here say. Packet pickup at Belfry HS in KY was simple and fun on Friday. Plenty of information, a corkboard map to stick a pin in where you were from, a really fun local goods expo.
We stayed at the Mountaineer Hotel, a block from the marathon finish (5k start & finish), and it was straight out of 1925 in a fun way – well maintained but true to the original as could be. The regular elevator was out of order so the original now a freight elevator was run by a staff member – “step up, please”.
The 2022 weather started as great running weather – cloudy and 65. The start in the Food City parking lot worked. This was the 23rd year, the locals must be used to it, the only coned off section was the last mile but it all worked, passing cars on the river road were all pleasant. The total ascent on my watch was 1,217. The famous hill was persistent but not steep. The course is scenic since the whole area is scenic.
The production was true to the reviews here – the whole town seemed friendly and the water stations were numerous and helpful. The swag was fun, the same medal for all races but it increased in size from 5k to half to full. Full is near the size of a bread plate. The shirt is nice, I love the motto “no feudin’ just runnin’” and the two hillbillies in running shorts & shoes made it 5 shoe swag for me.
I am glad we spent the weekend on the race, it was a lot of fun.

DIFFICULTY
3
PRODUCTION
5
SCENERY
4
SWAG
5
My Media

1 member marked this review helpful. Agree?

The name gets your hopes up (all downhill?) and in the end delivers nicely if not totally. The course starts at Ridgecrest Conference Center with a 4 mile out and … MORE

The name gets your hopes up (all downhill?) and in the end delivers nicely if not totally. The course starts at Ridgecrest Conference Center with a 4 mile out and back segment west towards the town of Black Mountain. It’s downhill out and since it takes a little different route back, the uphill wasn’t as bad as it might have been. Then, from Ridgecrest east to the end in Old Fort, it is about as downhill as it can be, a few small ups near the end, and a cruel uphill driveway into the parking lot with the finish, but nothing bad. My watch had a total ascent of 410 ft and descent of 1,644 ft. It was very scenic running thru Appalachia, especially the downhill segment. Aid stations and portapotties every 2 miles (except mile 8, only aid station, they warned you at the start). The town of Old Fort makes for a scenic finish, there were bananas and other things but we went across the street to a cinnamon roll/coffee shop (next door to the owner/operator’s former grandparents’ house, where he lives now). There were shuttles back to the start but I didn’t use it so I can’t comment.
We stayed at the conference center the night before, so we had access to the restaurants in Black Mountain, and a short walk to the start in the morning.
Swag was a long sleeve tech shirt, a medal with the state’s outline, race name, and date, and a sticker for the race in the shape of NC. The production was excellent and it’s easy to see why this race sells out it’s cap of 350. Very recommendable.

DIFFICULTY
2
PRODUCTION
5
SCENERY
5
SWAG
4
My Media

2 members marked this review helpful. Agree?

The reviews here made me curious enough to pick this one for my “Tennessee” marathon, I live in Tennessee and wanted to pick a good one for my first in … MORE

The reviews here made me curious enough to pick this one for my “Tennessee” marathon, I live in Tennessee and wanted to pick a good one for my first in state. I did.
It is a low key event, packet pick up in the town center park with no expo but people who are pleased to have you at their event and town. I ate at the fire hall spaghetti dinner, camped at one of the two activity field options just around the corner from the downtown. It was all fun and relaxed.
2022 had perfect running weather – overcast, some drizzle, and mid 50s temperature. The start in the town square of all the distances – 10k, half marathon, full marathon, and 40 miler – was so relaxed and egalitarian. It still is an ulta event first – 140 40 mile finishers compared to 40 marathon, 60 half, and 55 10k. Many race starts are tense and people are self focused, for good reasons. But at the Strolling Jim it was more like the start of a concert or something. People took it seriously – the course record was broken by star runner Camille Heron – but it they also seemed to treat it as a gathering too and were genial. I couldn’t tell which distance runners I was talking to during the run until I asked. I had the nicest conversations before, during, and after the race.
The course. Mid Tennessee has rolling hills and they add up, 1,900 ft of ascent on my watch. The roads are open and no real monitors, instructions and some encouraging sayings are painted on the road in the place of monitors and it worked for me. But, support was there when needed – a crossing of a 4 lane state hiway had two stellar sheriff’s deputies stopping traffic as runners crossed. The aid stations were as advertised – some were jugs by the roadside, some were staffed with snacks. At the marathon turn around (lollypop with a stick course) a volunteer poured water in my pack bladder while I held it open, a big help. And his partner taught me a new funny saying while it was going on. It was all beautiful farmland with the green leaves only in their second week.
The finish was the same, people shouting your name and lots of people around, people who had finished and stuck around to cheer others on. Camille even.
The swag was low key as advertised, the same medal as the 40 milers got, probably the only one I will ever have that says 40 miles. And a cotton tshirt. The Ultrarunners also got a tshirt at the finish with a color based on their time. There was the beans, mac & cheese, and barbecued chicken, and lemonade at the packet pickup tent.
The registration confirmation email said “no one leaves disappointed”. I know what they mean now. So many people repeat, now I know why.

DIFFICULTY
5
PRODUCTION
5
SCENERY
5
SWAG
3
My Media

1 member marked this review helpful. Agree?

This was April’s installment of the Knoxville Track Club’s monthly trail run series. You could choose a half marathon or 7 mile distance, both are approximate and actual distances are … MORE

This was April’s installment of the Knoxville Track Club’s monthly trail run series. You could choose a half marathon or 7 mile distance, both are approximate and actual distances are higher. It was at North Boundary greenway/mountain bike area just west of Oak Ridge, TN. The 7 mile option was split between gravel access roads and single track trails. It all seemed to gentle rolling hills, which of course accumulate, but still, nothing too long and steep. My watch had 673 ft of ascent. It was a beautiful wooded area with parking on the roadside, plenty of room. KTC also put on a kids race a half hour before the other events, pretty neat.
The production was great as usual – a couple hundred people were through race morning packet pickup and at the start, which began at precisely 9:00. There was a water station somewhere on the loop, which the half marathon runners would go by twice. Gun time only, no chips, which fits. The production on these fits the events well. You know going in that the swag is one shirt per runner per year. There was cut fruit and water at the finish.
What a great way to start a weekend.

DIFFICULTY
4
PRODUCTION
5
SCENERY
5
SWAG
3
My Media

1 member marked this review helpful. Agree?

This is March’s trail race in the Knoxville Track Club’s annual trail race series. Big Ridge State Park is mostly known for it’s location on Norris Lake but the trail … MORE

This is March’s trail race in the Knoxville Track Club’s annual trail race series. Big Ridge State Park is mostly known for it’s location on Norris Lake but the trail runs show off it’s trails and how aptly named the park is.
There were two distances to choose from in March 2022 – 5 miles and 11. We did the 11 miles- basically a figure 8 with an out and back in the middle. We now know that 2 ridges run thru the park since the 11 mile goes over both. We ran the virtual option in the morning, the actual races were in the afternoon. The course was well marked, flags just where they were needed – late winter trails can be hard to see with all the fallen leaves and less use. Total ascent on my watch was 2,028 ft, pretty impressive for a lake side run.
It was a clear day with the temperature at 36 at sunrise. It was a beautiful day for a run in the woods of Tennessee, along streams, on ridge tops, and along the shore of Norris Lake. Definitely a nice course, thanks to KTC for putting it on.

DIFFICULTY
4
PRODUCTION
5
SCENERY
5
SWAG
3
My Media

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The Ultra Caballo Blanco is the race Christopher McDougall wrote about in Born To Run. A marathon distance has been added, in addition to the original 50-mile race. "If you … MORE

The Ultra Caballo Blanco is the race Christopher McDougall wrote about in Born To Run. A marathon distance has been added, in addition to the original 50-mile race. “If you were looking for a beautiful and challenging route in one of the most remote and beautiful locations on the planet – you’ve succeeded”, to quote one long time ultra-runner. There is one road into Urique, about 25 miles of what we used to call a “logging road” back in the day – bulldozed and only infrequently a full 2 lanes, with some impressive drop offs and no guard rails. If two vehicles meet, one backs up to a where there is room to pass. Sometimes light planes use one of Urique’s larger streets as a runway but the way in and out is the road. And the paved road that the Urique road connects to is remote to begin with. That may be why the race still seems to resemble the one in the book.

It is hard to review this like a regular race in the US. The sign up is through ultrasignup.com, but it is more than just a race. Micah True started it to introduce international athletes to the beauty of the Raramuri (Tarahumara) people, their culture, and their magical lands. You may have heard of Korima – give without expectation of return – it’s not about monetary crap. The local town folk love race week. The town is alive with big city entertainment and many visitors. They are happy to have visitors, but also, they don’t need to have them.
There aren’t full published results yet but approximately 600-800 local Raramuri runners were expected along with about 300 National and International runners (Nationals were the majority of the 300).

The town seems to scale up to provide for the influx of people. Food and bottled water were plentiful in tiendas, there were pop up street vendors cooking gorditas over a metal sheet on a 55 gallon drum, and the few local restaurants never seemed to have a wait. Getting pesos in small denominations ahead of time was best, I don’t think there was a bank.

Packet pickup was the day before under a structure shading a basketball court area. There were two lines, probably split between those who have access to ultrasignup.com and those who don’t. It wasn’t apparent to me and others at first but I eventually figured it out and got my packet (the first line you see is the one for no access since it is much longer).

Both races started at 6:00 AM, a good balance between just enough light and giving maximum time on course with lower morning temperatures. Funny to have a race with parking not an issue. Everyone walks from where they spend the night – it’s a small town. Many Raramuri really do walk into town a day or two before and camp or sleep where there is some cover.

The marathon course is a Y shape like the original 50-mile course. The Y nexus is about a mile outside of Urique, the course leaves town, goes back thru town and then returns to the finish after a 6 mile out and back. The course is well marked and much of it is along the area road – bulldozed and rough. The one trail section is from just a little above the river crossing to about 200 ft below some of the impressive cliff faces overlooking town. It is rough and steep and beautiful. The high point and turnaround of that section is the small settlement of Naranjo and the return section is on the rough road that leads up there. It was a relief to run downhill on it.

Aid stations were very adequate. A couple ran out of water but I was in the back part of the pack. It really is best to carry what you need and refill at the stations that have water. The lack of water was entirely forgivable to me since some stations had pinole – roasted corn meal mixed with purified water. It was delicious, I had been wondering what it was like. Bananas and oranges and bottle water were the other offerings. Three stations put wrist bands on you since electronic mats were out of the question. All the volunteers I met were helpful and nice and quick to keep things moving. Red Cross staff were present at some for first aid. All in all, given the remote location, the aid stations were a 5 shoe effort.

What was the best or most unique aspect of the race? Running with the Raramuri. Many really still use sandals made with tire rubber and leather, and wear the vivid traditional clothes. Some, including Lorena of the wonderful Netflix special, were wearing shoes but sandals were numerous. And they really do run. You may already have heard this, the Raramuri were what could be perceived as shy in public, and with the language barrier, running together was the primary way of communication and seemed very sufficient.

Importance of swag kind of recedes in a race like this – everyone got a very nice tech shirt and matching muff, which many Raramuri runners wore on race day. The finisher’s medal is subdued but the ribbon is hard to beat since ‘Ultramarathon Caballo Blanco’ is in large print on it (I know the 50-miler is the real ultra but I wasn’t going to argue). You can tell, I had a great time, and if this type of event fits you, then it is well worth the effort getting there.

DIFFICULTY
5
PRODUCTION
5
SCENERY
5
SWAG
5
My Media

1 member marked this review helpful. Agree?

This was the second year in a row for me and I will do next year if the day is open for me. I was one of 66 runners gathering … MORE

This was the second year in a row for me and I will do next year if the day is open for me. I was one of 66 runners gathering at the middle school – center of the town of Norris. The course is a misshapen loop. It benefits The Anderson County Child Advocacy Services. Swag was a tshirt and a medal for age group top finishes. The production is great and a nice array of beverages afterwards. See you next year.

DIFFICULTY
3
PRODUCTION
5
SCENERY
5
SWAG
4
My Media

1 member marked this review helpful. Agree?

The Knoxville Track Club puts on two 30k races in one location at the same time - at Whitestone Inn with trail and road versions. I did the trail in … MORE

The Knoxville Track Club puts on two 30k races in one location at the same time – at Whitestone Inn with trail and road versions. I did the trail in 2022.

Course difficulty gets 5 sneaks – 3,000 ft ascent. The trail itself was a combination of old bulldozer paths and single track trail. The area got a lot of rain two days earlier but mud wasn’t a problem. We did a 6 mile loop 3 times. There was one aid station, and it is my favorite. On the one black top road in the forest, 4 guys set up a sound system and had a terrific array of beverages – vanilla beer is my new go to race hydration. They had cowbells and fist bumps and plenty of energy. Since it was on the stick section of one of the loop lollipops, we got to go by 6 times.

Course scenery is 5 sneaks – farmland with sheep, goats, and horses, forest, lakeside, and hilltop views. It helped that it was a brilliant winter day, 25 degrees at the start and high 40s by my finish, perfectly clear sky.

Production definitely 5 sneaks. Packet pick up and race center was in a Whitestone lodge. Course was well marked, pre race communication excellent, just the right amount of course monitors, and post race breakfast.

Race Swag was an orange tank, sort of an in club joke. Apparently 20 years ago they gave had the same orange tank but with white letters that became a club joke for the ugliest shirt – you must have had to have been there. This year they changed the letters to black, I love it. Great like wicking material, I will definitely use it. And, since this was part of the 2022 race series, it was on top of the one shirt that everyone gets for the whole series.

My performance, 4 sneaks. Wish I could have gone faster but given the circumstances it was OK.

This was an outstanding event. KTC knows how to do it.

DIFFICULTY
5
PRODUCTION
5
SCENERY
5
SWAG
5
My Media

1 member marked this review helpful. Agree?

Zen Evo chocolate is made in Knoxville, and sold by Eddie’s Health Shoppe, a solid supporter of running & health in the Knoxville area. The event took place in World’s … MORE

Zen Evo chocolate is made in Knoxville, and sold by Eddie’s Health Shoppe, a solid supporter of running & health in the Knoxville area. The event took place in World’s Fair Park and the course was all on greenway and partly along the Tennessee river. The event was put on by Personal Best Racing. So, no surprise that 487 runners showed up on a February morning and had a great time.
It was 50 degrees and overcast, which was pretty good running weather. There is plentiful parking all around. The 9:00 start time was very convenient, not too early, not too late. PBR really does a great job with their events. And instead of a medal, the finishers got Zen Evo chocolate (milk, dark, or white) in dishes coating a strawberry, oreo cookie, and marshmallow.
There was only one road to cross and traffic was stopped for the runners. There was a water station and excellent photography with pics available the next morning. My watch had 62 feet of ascent. The greenway was always sufficiently wide although it was at it’s narrowest at the turnaround. But everyone was cooperative – shouts preceded the lead runners so people going out got out of their way as the leaders came back. And the festivities at the park stayed going until the last runners were back. Fun for all. Swag also included a zip hooded sweatshirt made out of tshirt like material. Really a fun event all the way around and definitely recommendable.

DIFFICULTY
2
PRODUCTION
5
SCENERY
5
SWAG
5
My Media

1 member marked this review helpful. Agree?

The Knoxville Track Club made the difficult decision early race morning to cancel the half and 10k because of snow and ice on the course, and wind chills around 6 … MORE

The Knoxville Track Club made the difficult decision early race morning to cancel the half and 10k because of snow and ice on the course, and wind chills around 6 F. They gave the option for virtual runs and modified the runsignup.com website to accommodate adding results. Along with a generous time frame to complete the virtual.
They had the genius idea to include pics from the course in the cancellation email, including the arched passage under the railroad tracks, an inspired choice since everyone who has ran the course before would remember it and have a frame of reference. What was a dusting over most of the county was what looked like an inch and a half on site that was not going to melt anytime soon on the shaded rural roads or easily accommodate all the traffic coming in to the small town area – this is a popular area race. I ran the virtual the next day in the afternoon – mid 40s and clear skies. That’s life.
Course scenery and difficulty are what I remember from past 10Ks.
Email and social media updates were timely and when they said they would be. KTC put so much time into this, I felt badly for them the most of anyone. Looking forward to next year already.

DIFFICULTY
3
PRODUCTION
5
SCENERY
5
SWAG
5
My Media

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The Knoxville Track Club puts an an annual monthly trail run series and this 5k thru the woods on the Maryville College is the first event. It is a loop … MORE

The Knoxville Track Club puts an an annual monthly trail run series and this 5k thru the woods on the Maryville College is the first event. It is a loop course with 230 ft of ascent on my watch. Single track trail much of the way, with the start being wider which lets the group sort itself out.
100+ runners participated in 2022. The temperature was 32 degrees with snowflakes falling prior to and during the race, not surprising. The trail was muddy in spots and leaves also made it slippery in spots but not especially hazardous. Production was 5 sneakers like all KTC events. Swag gets 5 stars, each year is one shirt for the whole series, this year’s shirt has all the race names on the front and courses on the back.
It was a great way to start the trail running of 2022 for me.

DIFFICULTY
2
PRODUCTION
5
SCENERY
4
SWAG
5
My Media

1 member marked this review helpful. Agree?

Really a fun half marathon. 2022 was a classic January race, 19 degrees at the 8:00 start and 28 degrees two hours later at the finish, on a brilliantly clear … MORE

Really a fun half marathon. 2022 was a classic January race, 19 degrees at the 8:00 start and 28 degrees two hours later at the finish, on a brilliantly clear winter day. The route was along the greenway with much of it by the Tennessee river. The start and finish were at Volunteer Landing on the waterfront with Neyland Stadium as the backdrop.
The course was Y shaped which is fun since you get two chances to go by everyone, in a race of 71 runners, that helps it seem more compact and friendly instead of strung out in a loop. My watch had total ascent of 292 ft., most of which was crossing over the river twice from close to water level.
Production by Personal Best Racing was excellent as usual. All the road crossings were staffed by volunteers and police together. The course was well marked and well thought out for a very enjoyable run. They even coordinated with Calhoun’s restaurant to have a section open early for post race food, really a great idea with the low temperatures.
The swag was great, who wouldn’t want the tshirt and “squishy” medal with a unicorn? Definitely time well spent today.

DIFFICULTY
2
PRODUCTION
5
SCENERY
5
SWAG
5
My Media

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This was my first large scale marathon/half marathon. There were 1,473 marathon finishers and 7,894 half finishers. Both lengths started together at 7:15 with rolling wave starts, seemed to work … MORE

This was my first large scale marathon/half marathon. There were 1,473 marathon finishers and 7,894 half finishers. Both lengths started together at 7:15 with rolling wave starts, seemed to work well for me but next time I will wait to start my watch, it wanted to go to energy save at least twice. I enjoyed standing around before the start, with that many people eager to run.
Both lengths shared the same route for 11 miles, the old downtown sections mainly, north of the freeway. Then the marathon went thru older residential areas and a nice greenway south of the freeway. The weather was warm, 69 at the start and mid 70s by noon, but fortunately there was a morning fog type cloud cover that really helped keep the heat off.
This seemed like a post Covid effort with the RnR folks on their way back but understandably not there yet. But there were bands and water stations every mile it seemed like, and to me that was a big change from my previous races of less than 120 marathon finishers, and all I needed.
It was a very enjoyable time for me, especially since I got to run 11 miles with my daughter who was running the half. The road surfaces were fine, nothing too rough. Course was well marked and shut off from traffic. The start and finish were close enough together. There were plenty of hotels within walking distance to choose from. They even managed to get the shirts for the finish, a huge effort I imagine since they stuck offshore in a ship at one point. Ascent was 823 ft on my watch.
I had a great time but I liked what I was doing, even though once again the heat slowed me down. This is a very recommendable race.

DIFFICULTY
3
PRODUCTION
5
SCENERY
4
SWAG
4
My Media

1 member marked this review helpful. Agree?

I enjoyed every part of this marathon. Pre-race communications were good. Packet pickup was in an empty store space next to a sponsor - Fleet Feet, so if you needed … MORE

I enjoyed every part of this marathon. Pre-race communications were good. Packet pickup was in an empty store space next to a sponsor – Fleet Feet, so if you needed supplies, it was easy to pick them up. The start and finish were at the Ike Hamilton Expo center, more than enough parking and close to two hotels, which were within a 10 minute drive of many good restaurants. Our hotel was a walk across the large expo parking lot.
Weather was clear and 38 at the start, and 70 5 hours later. Perfect and judging from past photos, not unusual. The course was a figure 8, sharing the first part with the half marathon. It went thru residential areas and the old downtown, along a bayou that had nice houses on either side. It crossed the river via a draw bridge at the middle of the 8. The course was well marked with cones, staffed with police at key intersections, and had a very sufficient number of water stations with very nice and encouraging volunteers. Around miles 23-25 the route was a long a narrower 2 lane road with a very small grass shoulder between the road and a ditch, but I don’t see this as an issue – if you are relatively fast you will hit it before traffic picks up, and if you aren’t, you are going slowly enough to navigate the shoulder. I thought the entire course design was thoughtful and great. The finish line medal person had you lean over and they put the medal around your neck, the kind of touch that was typical of the whole experience.
The ascent on my watch was 390 ft, pretty much all in bridges. There were 58 marathoners signed up but only 32 finished, and 165 half marathon finishers. The event is deserving of a higher turnout; maybe being in rural agricultural NE Louisiana and sharing a race weekend with bigger marque events? We used the trip to stop by the World Heritage Poverty Point Mounds, and enjoyed our whole time in the area. You can tell, I think this is a recommendable race and hope lots of people get to enjoy it in the future.

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Hendersonville NC got rain all week. The greenway course was flooded and muddy apparently. Idaph Events made a very well done last minute course shift to what I thought was … MORE

Hendersonville NC got rain all week. The greenway course was flooded and muddy apparently. Idaph Events made a very well done last minute course shift to what I thought was better than the original plan – a scenic out and back with a single start, compared to the original double out and back with wave starts over half an hour. Communication was great, email and website update of the changes, including a changed time range for packet pickup.
The events (half and 8k) were at a softball park in a wooded area, parking was close and plentiful. The half was all on roads, no greenway, but there were sufficient monitors and water stations. The new course had more ascent (623 ft) than the original but nothing seemed too steep.
The course was a little short on my watch, about 12.5 miles, but I didn’t hear any complaints and there was plenty of room for the compulsive types to run thru the finish and get to 13.1 – at least it worked for me. It was so much better to not have the race cancelled. Idaph handled the situation beatifully, it could not have been easy making that shift at the last minute.
The swag was a nice soft cotton long sleeve shirt, neat medal, prints by a local artist for top finishers 3 deep in age groups, and a bag with coupons for local discounts. There was a food truck and nice post race refreshments – water, sports drinks, fruit and bars, free local donut and beer. The course water stops had water, sports drinks, and a nice array of gels.
Definitely a recommendable race, very enjoyable.

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I was expecting a scenic run on a beautiful fall morning. Johnson City sits below Buffalo Mountain, the end of an impressive series of Appalachian crests, it was 52 at … MORE

I was expecting a scenic run on a beautiful fall morning. Johnson City sits below Buffalo Mountain, the end of an impressive series of Appalachian crests, it was 52 at race start and clear, leaves were just starting to turn on some trees. What added so much to that was an impeccable race production.
So many volunteers at intersections, with police support. Marked off lanes where needed (some roads thru neighborhoods were very low traffic). Well stocked and spaced water stations. Start and finish at the Farmers Market in the old city, with plenty of parking and easy access. Bluegrass bands at the 3 relay team places. Great swag – nice cotton poly blend shirt, 2 note books, Blue Lizard sunscreen samples and this year the medal was a guitar pick theme, with the distance and date on the ribbon.
The course was thoughtfully laid out and again, well marked, supported, and separated from traffic. Probably enough hairpin bends to take it out of the really fast category but the turns kept it in the old city area and university district. My watch had 486 ft of ascent due to a couple hills, nothing too steep.
There were 240 finishers so it was a nice sized race. Post race was a generous layout of water, gatorade, fruit, and carb type stuff. Definitely a recommendable half marathon.

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This was the 8th annual Race for the Summitt 4-Miler, which benefits the Pat Summitt Foundation, fighting Alzheimer’s disease. Pat was there for the early races after her diagnosis with … MORE

This was the 8th annual Race for the Summitt 4-Miler, which benefits the Pat Summitt Foundation, fighting Alzheimer’s disease. Pat was there for the early races after her diagnosis with the disease.
The odd 4 mile distance maybe a play on words “Race 4 for the Summitt”? I haven’t found out but that occurred to me about mile 2. The course was scenic, along the Tennessee River and through the UT Knoxville campus. It starts and ends at Pat Summitt Plaza. My watch had 112 ft of ascent. There was one hill at the Ag campus bridge, otherwise it was pretty flat.
The production was off on this race. I hate to say it, given the race namesake’s importance and the nice student organization hosting it, but it was long on enthusiasm and short on practicality. We ran on Neyland Drive, 4 lanes, 40 mph speed limit and no lanes were closed. Luckily there is a greenway running along side and most of the runners chose that eventually. But if nothing else, even if no one is hurt, pedestrians out in traffic are sure to irritate drivers. I didn’t see one course marking – cones, chalk anything. There were police at some turns but directing runners is not their job, and oddly the lanes were not closed, so after a driver drove around the police car with flashing lights, we were all out in the same road. The finish line was 25 yards away from the main campus street, kind of hard to stop momentum at times and not shoot out on the street. Maybe the hope was that early Sunday morning traffic would be sparse? I don’t know, but the dynamics of the event didn’t come close to the reputation of the namesake.
Swag was a high quality cotton blend tshirt and a silicon wrist band. There were bananas and other typical things afterwards, and even coffee – a nice high point to end the review with.
Funny thing is I would run this again, it’s local and Pat Summitt was great. I just hope a few things are improved next time. Bottom line, nice to be out there and thanks for putting the race on.

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I can’t top Lorelei’s review of this race so please read hers. This race lived up to all that I had heard, and then some. The weather in 2021 was … MORE

I can’t top Lorelei’s review of this race so please read hers. This race lived up to all that I had heard, and then some. The weather in 2021 was perfect, 54 at the start, low 70s at the end. Perfectly clear. It is hard to describe the scenery, it was all fantastic. There were 1,116 finishers. It was so much fun to be part a large group of runners enjoying the event so much.
The production was fantastic. The water stations classic, with Amish children handing out water. The swag you have probably heard about – the medal made out of a used up local horseshoe on a strip of leather from a local harness shop. And a nice short sleeve tech shirt with the distance and date, a whoopee pie, and a souvenir quality race book.
Depending on where you are from, the course may or may not have hills. My watch had 525 feet of total ascent, coming from east Tennessee they mostly seemed like inclines rather that steep hills.
This is definitely an event in it’s own class. If you enjoy a rural setting and well run event, this must be one of the best.

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I ran this as part of the Fire Company Challenge- running both the 5K Friday evening and the half marathon Saturday morning. It was a relaxed and beautiful preview of … MORE

I ran this as part of the Fire Company Challenge- running both the 5K Friday evening and the half marathon Saturday morning. It was a relaxed and beautiful preview of what the half marathon would be like. The weather was perfect, clear and 70 with a slight breeze for the 6:30 pm start. There were 616 runners. I thought the scenery was gorgeous. There were runners of all ages and families running together. So much fun. My watch had an ascent of 46 ft.
The pasta dinner from 4-8 was fun and well attended, tickets had to be purchased for it. It was fun sitting down with everyone under the big tent and eating after the race. Swag was a short sleeve tech shirt with the date and race length on it.
I was there for the half but had it just been the 5k I would have been completely satisfied.

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This was only a few miles away and worth waking up for. From the looks of the other 54 runners, they felt the same way - local folks up to … MORE

This was only a few miles away and worth waking up for. From the looks of the other 54 runners, they felt the same way – local folks up to support a local high school.
It started on the track at the concession stand of the football field, went out on the greenway past historic Weigel dairy, past the post office to the turn around. It was fun to run where I have only driven so many times before. There are charming older houses or the dairy field/flood plain most of the way. A nice long wooden boardwalk or sidewalks basically. My watch had 52 ft of elevation gain. Excellent police, fire, and ambulance support. The fire truck at the high school played the theme from Rocky as runners returned, sounded like a phone held up to a mic but it worked. The start was the race director saying “Go” but it was chipped timed by an area company, Personal Best Racing, they always do a great job. It ended on the football field 50 yard line, I forgot to strike the Heisman pose as I crossed the finish.
The swag was a tshirt and if you placed in an age division, a ribbon. What more could you ask for? There was a town festival with a car show and booths of local merchants and craftspeople that we spent time at between the finish and awards.
Definitely a recommendable race and worth making the effort to go to.

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One of those local races that you want to do as many years as you can. It benefits East Tennessee Children's Hospital, a private nonprofit and area force since 1937. … MORE

One of those local races that you want to do as many years as you can. It benefits East Tennessee Children’s Hospital, a private nonprofit and area force since 1937.
Both distances start and end in Worlds Fair Park, the production is smooth and first rate. The lead runner for both distances this year was a small guy in a walker that had to learn to walk again post surgeries, it was great to run in his footsteps.
The 10k goes thru a scenic part of College Hill adjacent to the University of Tennessee, the first water stop is at Children’s Hospital, appropriately enough. It reaches a greenway shortly after, winds around Tyson Park and follows the greenway to the Tennessee River and UT Veterinary Hospital and UT Gardens. Then it goes up river past Neyland Stadium and up the hill and along the greenway still, to Worlds Fair Park. It was low 70s with broken clouds today, 203 ft of elevation gain on my watch. There were food trucks at the finish. Definitely a great way to start the weekend.

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The Scholars Run is a well done 5K in a scenic small college setting. Packet picket in the morning was at the rec center and smooth, there were indoor restrooms. … MORE

The Scholars Run is a well done 5K in a scenic small college setting. Packet picket in the morning was at the rec center and smooth, there were indoor restrooms. 200+ runners made a nice size. The course was mostly on campus with about half a mile going out the entrance into a charming well kept older neighborhood of the type of nice houses you’d expect across from a small private older university. Streets weren’t closed but there were police on the main street off campus directing traffic. The one water/gatorade stop was here, put on in front of an Edward Jones advisor’s front yard, with him and his family serving, nice.
The course was well marked with volunteers at key spots. My watch had 167 ft of elevation gain. There were bananas, bagels and pastries at the finish with plenty of water bottles. Swag was a quality cotton tshirt with silhouettes of runners wearing mortar boards.
We ran this last about 20 years and it was so nice to run it again. I hope we can run it again next year, it’s that kind of race.

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This was as good as I would expect a July Half to be. The start/finish was in a pleasant office park adjacent to greenways, which meant plenty of parking amid … MORE

This was as good as I would expect a July Half to be. The start/finish was in a pleasant office park adjacent to greenways, which meant plenty of parking amid trees and grass islands – access, parking, and space to warm up was really good. There was even sort of a mini expo and food tents, the Starbucks with iced coffee and donuts was brilliant. The 6:30 (half) & 6:45 (5k & 10k) starts were early enough to hit the coolest part of the day. There were partial road closures and police support to and from the greenways, and police motorcycle sweepers for each event.
The half course was sort of a T shape, with the second half going to the UNC Charlotte campus. The whole course was pleasant since the office park was nicely landscaped and the greenways mostly wooded. The elevation gain was 322 ft on my watch. There were 145 runners in the half, 99 in the 10k, and 91 in the 5k. Start2Finish event management handled the whole thing very well and it was fun seeing everyone on the out and back type courses. Excellent finish line with runner’s names and home towns being called out.
The swag was a short sleeve tech shirt and a nice big medal, both with a dogwood flower theme. To me that is good swag and I was happy for the rest of the fee go towards well run events and the charity. The start temperature was 73 degrees, and probably around 83 2+ hours later; even with that and heat always slowing me down, it was so much fun to be out there running a well done event like this.
This was the third year with 2020 cancelled because of Covid. Definitely a recommendable race and one I would not mind running again if I was in the area.

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Gorgeous marathon settings seem to be a Utah standard, the Sand Hollow marathon is a really fun small town race that was a joy to run and delivers on scenery … MORE

Gorgeous marathon settings seem to be a Utah standard, the Sand Hollow marathon is a really fun small town race that was a joy to run and delivers on scenery and rural settings. This year the marathon course was doing the half marathon course twice, road construction closed the regular course. It starts in the old town section of Hurricane at the charming community center – a square block of a small museum, park, playground and 50s era grade school turned into a well maintained community rec building. The course heads south out of town thru quiet neighborhoods into farm land, and then turns east against dramatic buttes rising above the fields. The north view on the way back is of the mountains that lead into the southern entrance of Zion National Park, more “jaw dropping” scenery (as the race website says). I was happy to run the same route twice with surroundings like that. The roads are open but traffic was sparse even into late morning, it all worked.
The original date was early March but was pushed back to June 5 this year from Covid concerns – no snow in the background peaks in photos this year. More water stations were added, they seemed like a sufficient number to me. There is very little shade and the sun rises over the buttes early, blacktop is warm, and there was a record high the day before the race, so it was warm, 95 in town by mid morning and probably warmer out on the course. But that should not be an issue in the future when it is back in March. I was pleased with my time since heat really slows me down. The scenery and setting really did make the heat much more bearable. It was so nice to sit on the lawn in the shade of trees at the finish line and drink a couple cold bottles of water.
The swag is probably going to be my all time favorite – an image of a running Kokopelli in minimalist shoes. He is on the medal and tech shirt. Could be my next tattoo. Your race results are handed to you in what seemed like under a minute at the finish, overall results are taking longer to post but again, this is a small town race with a few people working hard to get it done, I am sure they will be there with all the past results soon. My watch had a 1,040 ft elevation gain, that all seemed to be in the mile and a half leading up to the turn around point, so 520 feet twice was not that steep or bad.
I was very glad to be one of the people running the marathon, I had been looking forward to this since November and it definitely delivered.

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This was the 44th edition of the Expo, put on by the Knoxville Track Club, it is Knoxville’s longest continuous running event. There are around 10 streakers who have run … MORE

This was the 44th edition of the Expo, put on by the Knoxville Track Club, it is Knoxville’s longest continuous running event. There are around 10 streakers who have run all 44 and we were lucky enough to run and talk with one for a while – so interesting to hear.
There were 400+ runners total in the 5 and 10Ks, which started together in an area of old city Knoxville. The out & back course wound thru the eastern side of the old city, down to the Tennessee River. The weather was perfect, dramatic overcast and 60 degrees. The production was typical KTC top level. The swag was a shirt and $1 off at Craft Brewing at the start/finish. My watch had 266 ft of elevation gain, so no real hills, just elevation changes to and from the river. We ran this last fall in it’s Covid delayed edition on the Karns course and half a year later was not too soon, I hope I get to run it again next year.

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This was called a low key half and it delivered - a well done low key run on a greenway. Low key probably included 4 unsupervised road crossings, an open … MORE

This was called a low key half and it delivered – a well done low key run on a greenway. Low key probably included 4 unsupervised road crossings, an open greenway, direction signs and mile markers in chalk on the greenway, swag = a shirt, and no direct police or medical support. All of which made for a really nice early morning run on a beautiful greenway. It also was geared toward runners with a 70 person cap and 2:30 time limit.
It started at Crossfit Pistol Creek, which is bordering the greenway. Plenty of nearby parking, heated packet pickup and restrooms (with supplemental porta potties). The 6:30 start time helped in many ways – I saw less than 10 people on the greenway that were not in the event, and it left a lot of Saturday to do all the regular things.
Race production was excellent – good prerace communication, smooth packet picket and race management. Makes sense though, Crossfit Pistol Creek knows athletic events and so does Knoxville Endurance, the two sponsors. There were 3 aid stations with water and gatorade, one also had syrup. Which made for 6 stops on the out and back course.
The Maryville area is known for its scenic greenways and the race segment lived up to it. My watch had 285 ft elevation gain, just some short inclines, no hills.
I would definitely run this again, a very pleasant and well delivered event that fits into a weekend smoothly.

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Over the years I have gone out of my way to drive thru this area and eat at the diner (now a pizza place) in Viola. When I saw there … MORE

Over the years I have gone out of my way to drive thru this area and eat at the diner (now a pizza place) in Viola. When I saw there was a half marathon there, it was a must and it did not disappoint. Incredible.
The whole production was a to me an excellent fit. Packet pickup all day before and morning of the race.
The man directing parking was a virtuoso in the art, welcoming, and filling up the grass field like tetras. The start in the town square was well organized. The scenery was fantastic the whole way. There were not mile markers, which for me only added to the experience, I just ran and enjoyed the views. When I finally looked at my watch and saw it was mile 12, I was actually disappointed it was going to be over so soon.
The water/gatorade stations were plentiful and well spaced, and there were even 4 very young future farmers giving out lemonade from their driveway – that was a first for me and welcome.
The overcast and low 50s was perfect running weather. My watch had 495 ft of elevation, just gentle inclines. It was a full 13.1 miles of wonderful rural scenery. I am so glad I was one of the lucky 150 or so runners on the course today.

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The race theme was a do-over for the races we couldn’t run this last year: “ For those of you who have been disappointed by cancelled or postponed races, we’ve … MORE

The race theme was a do-over for the races we couldn’t run this last year: “ For those of you who have been disappointed by cancelled or postponed races, we’ve got your back!”. It started and finished at Percy Priest Dam park and went along the Stones River Greenway. Extremely scenic especially for being next to the Nashville Airport.
It was a certified half marathon but had gun timing. At the end 2 women peered at my bib and called out my number to the person writing down the time at the finish – I loved the personalized finish.
The production seemed flawless. Packet pickup the morning of the race at a shelter with heated restrooms, well organized with knowledgeable volunteers.
The course was beautiful, woods pretty much the whole way and along the Stones River. My watch had 666 ft of elevation but nothing really steep, just inclines. There were aid stations every 3 miles, just right.
The tech shirt and medal had a very nicely designed logo. I was pleased with my performance since my calf tightened up about 1.5 miles into it, but I was able to manage it thru paying careful attention to my stride. And really, I just don’t care much about time especially at a beautiful and fun event like this, it was nice just being there. There were about 90 runners and everyone was encouraging each other as we passed on the out and back course (with 2 small different loops put in).
I would recommend this and be happy to run it again. I hope it continues since in the future the name would connect to the odd year we just went thru.

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This was the 25 anniversary Museum of Flight race. It was a well supported and ran event, at the museum attached to Robins Air Force Base. Access to the museum … MORE

This was the 25 anniversary Museum of Flight race. It was a well supported and ran event, at the museum attached to Robins Air Force Base. Access to the museum was thru a gate entrance without security, so access was simple. This was a Covid compliant event so that limited interaction with the venue and people – in and out of the museum hangar at packet pick up, no expo. Start was staggered with 2 people taking off every few seconds.
The water stops were well spaced, about every 3 miles, with gatorade, water, bananas and oranges, and goos at some.
The marathon is a double loop course around the runways. The scenery was interesting enough to me, always something to look at on a military base. My watch had elevation gain at 410 ft without a hill, just inclines.
Winter weather can vary, this year it was 43 degrees and wet but the rain that was forecast never really showed up, just an occasional drizzle.
Nice long sleeve shirt that was non race specific (there was a marathon, half, and 5k) and a neat medal. Pizza at the end for runners.
There were 103 marathon finishers so it is a smaller race, after 25 years they sure seem to have it down. I enjoyed myself, I was very glad the museum foundation put it on.

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I ran the 10k for the second year in a row. This is a popular area event, both distances. Fun to see hundreds of runners out in 24 degree cloudy … MORE

I ran the 10k for the second year in a row. This is a popular area event, both distances. Fun to see hundreds of runners out in 24 degree cloudy weather this year. The course starts and ends in the small town of Strawberry Plains. The 10k (and half) is out and back thru nice river side farm country. My watch had 266 ft elevation gain. The shirt has been nice both years and there is even a medal, not standard in a KTC event, although maybe for an Eddie’s Health Shop sponsored one. Really a fun time.

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Norris TN is a planned community built, owned, and administered by the TVA when the Norris dam was built in the 1930s. It is locally known for being a scenic, … MORE

Norris TN is a planned community built, owned, and administered by the TVA when the Norris dam was built in the 1930s. It is locally known for being a scenic, rural town. The race benefits the Child Advocacy Center of Anderson County and is a classic small town run. The weather was rainy and low 50s in 2021, about 45 people ran the 5k. The lead young guy that finished under 18 minutes complemented me on my footgear, nice. The last three finishers were a mom and her grade school daughter – the daughter was running and cheering her mom on, and a 73 year old guy who took a wrong turn and came in to a round of applause during the awards ceremony. And in between that was what could be expected, a great example of running in community.
The course is scenic enough, running on roads thru the forest. My watch had 256 ft of ascent.
Appropriately enough for 2021, swag was a muff with the race name and logo. Age group finishers got a nice medal.
I liked it so much that when an email arrived for the 2022 event, I couldn’t resist. The price is a bargain too. A very recommendable race.

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The 2020 Dirty South Trail Half Marathon & 10K was part of the Knoxville Track Club’s annual trail running series. It takes place in Knoxville’s Urban Wilderness over bike and … MORE

The 2020 Dirty South Trail Half Marathon & 10K was part of the Knoxville Track Club’s annual trail running series. It takes place in Knoxville’s Urban Wilderness over bike and hiking trails, starting at Meade’s Quarry. The KTC does an excellent job putting races on. The trails were well marked, there were 2, maybe 3 water bottle tables, and friendly, helpful volunteers at the staging area. A tshirt was available – one for this year’s trail series, not race specific.
This year’s event had brilliant winter weather that was initially hidden by early morning river fog. The starting temperature was around 32 and was up to 50 3 hours later. The trails had mud from the rain 2 days earlier for a little extra challenge.
It was so nice to have an opportunity to run in the woods thanks to the KTC.

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A half marathon fit in my training cycle, this seemed like a good one, and actually it turned out to be a great one. The local running club put it … MORE

A half marathon fit in my training cycle, this seemed like a good one, and actually it turned out to be a great one. The local running club put it on and had a well produced and supported distance for almost everyone – 5k, 10k, and half.
Pikeville KY is a scenic mountain town but since the race went along the river, it was a flat course, my watch had 259 ft for the half. The course was a 10k out and back, with the half marathon doing it twice and the 5k halfway. I was happy to view the scenery twice and talk with the aid station folks twice. The weather cooperated, it was a clear cooler day, gorgeous. The packet picket was smooth, indoor restrooms were available since the race started at an event center in the old downtown. Covid wave starts worked well. There were sidewalks and generous road shoulders (with light Saturday morning traffic) the whole way. Free and numerous photos. A nice medal and great quality hooded sweatshirts for the half, a nice long sleeve tshirt for the 5 and 10k’s. Beer at the end, 2 well placed and stocked water and gatoraide stations along the course, with the far one having gels. Hard to think of a nicer way to spend a Saturday morning. Pikeville is a nice place to visit, with plenty of motel and restaurant offerings even though it is tucked away in the mountains. Being the county seat and having a small college probably helped. Definitely a recommendable event and one I would not mind at all repeating. The town is also a good example of the distance between first and second place – a sign at the scenic overlook above town says that it is home to one of the world’s largest engineering feats, second only to the Panama Canal. Most people know of the Panama Canal, how many have heard of Pikeville KY? I would love it if this race changed that.

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The Mach Tenn track club from Tullahoma puts on an excellent half marathon with sponsorship from the Jack Daniels distillery. 2020 was delayed until late October and the fall colors … MORE

The Mach Tenn track club from Tullahoma puts on an excellent half marathon with sponsorship from the Jack Daniels distillery. 2020 was delayed until late October and the fall colors had started. The start and finish were in Lynchburg but the course winds thru farm country. The water stations were numerous and had themes, runners could vote for their favorite after the race. The tech shirt was very good quality and the 2 sided medal was made from an oak whiskey barrel- the OBH initials on it are also parsed into the race length, 13.1, pretty clever. Whiskey Hill is a fun feature that gives everyone something to talk about. I am glad I was part of the 845 lucky people running the race.

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I loved this 10k. The idea of all uphill (most of the +2,000 ft is in the last 4 miles). The setting, the way the production fit the race (no … MORE

I loved this 10k. The idea of all uphill (most of the +2,000 ft is in the last 4 miles). The setting, the way the production fit the race (no chip time, no need – no pr’s here), and of course the challenge of pretty much up hill all the way. Perfect weather in 2020 to top it off.
The point to point course starts next to the main street of Norton, VA and climbs to the scenic lookup above the town. A significant portion has the classic switchbacks of a road that only leads to an overlook – where you slow the vehicle down to make the sharp turn. Woods provided pleasant scenery and shade. The last 50 yards are flat but otherwise it is uphill.
The production was smooth, the swag terrific – the hellbender on the tshirt has a facemask for 2020, and the age group award mugs were locally made. It was smart to go with gun time and presumably lower the cost so more money goes toward the charitable cause. The race start was late enough in the morning to allow easy driving to Norton from where ever you spent the night.
I loved seeing what I could do, and there is the added benefit of all the hills in the races following the Hellbender seeming insignificant.

DIFFICULTY
5
PRODUCTION
5
SCENERY
5
SWAG
5
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Fun out and back from Clinton High School. Course scenery gets a 3 because Clinton is a scenic area. The course goes out and up the divided 4 lane road … MORE

Fun out and back from Clinton High School. Course scenery gets a 3 because Clinton is a scenic area. The course goes out and up the divided 4 lane road thru Clinton. My watch had elevation gain of 69 feet. Very well produced, nice shirt, and age group medal. Would definitely run it again.

DIFFICULTY
2
PRODUCTION
5
SCENERY
3
SWAG
5
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Here are the answers to the form prompts - Share specifics, e.g. awesome aid stations, a medal I'll sleep with under my pillow: Yes to both. Plentiful water and Gator-aide … MORE

Here are the answers to the form prompts –
Share specifics, e.g. awesome aid stations, a medal I’ll sleep with under my pillow: Yes to both. Plentiful water and Gator-aide ready to go every 2 or so miles. Gummy bears, pickles, fruit. Friendly people that stayed for the tail end runners. The medal, what’s not to love about an ear of corn from an Iowa marathon? Definitely an under the pillow medal.

What was the most unique aspect of this race?: 2 things – I am not sure how many marathons there are between 2 small Iowa farm towns when corn and soybeans are near their peak before harvest. This must be one of the few, and to me the course was beautiful. Also, 2020 was the year of Covid 19 and so many races were cancelled. The Cedar River Complex folks had precautions that were being used nationwide and went on with their race (It’s been over 2 weeks and I am symptom free so it worked for me). That, and that the marathon was a Boston Qualifier seemed to draw a crowd, they seemed at their cap of 80, up from high 30’s the year before. It was one of the few marathons happening and was in a place I was glad to visit in a format I felt secure in.

How would you improve the race?: Wouldn’t change a thing.

Would you recommend this race to friends?: Definitely. We were surprised that nearby Mason City had so much to offer. Definitely stay in Osage if there is room at the motel and Airbnb’s, for a country experience. But 35 minutes away in Mason City is the only existing Frank Lloyd Wright designed hotel, renovated re-opened in 2011 and a joy to stay at. Mason City has a wonderful old city around the Historic Park Inn and it was fun to spend time around the marathon in.

I liked the swag, for a race this size. The medal speaks for itself, nice long sleeve tech shirt in superman blue with a large graphic like the medal. Fun local stuff in the bag.

DIFFICULTY
2
PRODUCTION
5
SCENERY
5
SWAG
5
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Fun half marathon winding along the Tennessee river in downtown Chattanooga. Starts in a nice park - plenty of room for all runners. The course was pretty flat, my watch … MORE

Fun half marathon winding along the Tennessee river in downtown Chattanooga. Starts in a nice park – plenty of room for all runners. The course was pretty flat, my watch had 449 ft. It was 59 degrees average and overcast on 10/20/2019. This was my first half, I have good memories of it.

DIFFICULTY
3
PRODUCTION
5
SCENERY
4
SWAG
5
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