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@onebittercritter

Cloverdale, CA Raving since 2016 active 3 weeks, 3 days ago

About Me

  • Running club(s):
  • Rave race:
  • Race that's calling my name:
  • I run because:

    It makes me happy!

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

Personal Bests (2)

Race Distance Location Date Result
Marathon Santa Rosa, CA Aug 25, 2018 3:50:33
10K Cloverdale, CA Oct 21, 2018 45:17

Future Races (0)

Race Distance Location Date Paid

Past Races (3)

Race Distance Location Date Result My Raves My Performance
10K Cloverdale, CA Oct 21, 2018 45:17
Marathon Santa Rosa, CA Aug 25, 2018 3:50:33
Marathon Cloverdale, CA Oct 23, 2016 4:14:25

My Raves

Cloverdale Vineyard Races

Cloverdale Vineyard Races

This is my third year running this race. I have done the half, the full, and this year I gave the 10k a shot. Being a Cloverdale native, I may … MORE

This is my third year running this race. I have done the half, the full, and this year I gave the 10k a shot. Being a Cloverdale native, I may be biased, but I think this race absolutely kicks ass.

First of all, the race is small. Even in a year with a huge turnout, it’s not one of those big anxiety-inducing madhouse type of events where you are already exhausting yourself just trying to use the porta-potty and find the start line. Packet pick-up is EASY, with an option to pick it up at the closest running store 15 minutes down the road Friday or Saturday, or just show up race morning and get it then. Many of the larger races do not offer race day packet pickup because it’s just not feasible for them with the number of runners participating. There is coffee and donuts next to the packet pickup stand and even a guy hanging around playing an accordion. Yeah, seriously.

I gave the course difficulty a three. Let me explain why. There are most definitely hills. Like, most of the time you are running, you are either running up or down. The hills are not ridiculously steep (like you’d find in San Francisco) but some of them are forces to be reckoned with. Keep this in mind when training. Particularly if you are doing a longer distance (half or full) you are going to want some hill training for this race. I PR’d my 10k simply because I haven’t raced a 10k in over a year and I’m much faster than I was then. In general, this course will not be your fastest. I have seen and heard complaints that the course measures long. I can’t speak for the longer distances, but the 10k was accurate this year. Be sure to run the tangents to avoid extra mileage. That can make a big difference when you are running on a wide road.

The course is almost entirely on packed gravel roads through the vineyards. It is very beautiful, and most of all, QUIET. You basically get the feel of running a hilly road race (although not exactly on pavement, it’s closer to road than a trail in my opinion) but without all the people and cars. If you absolutely thrive on cheering crowds and honking horns and funny homemade signs, this is not for you. This race is for those of us who want to get outdoors and enjoy a bit of nature. Volunteers were great this year. Lots of kids volunteering, which I love to see.

Race production is excellent. Easy packet pickup, fun starting line, clearly marked course, lots of aid stations, great post race festivities with live music, free beer and wine, and free race photos.

I look forward to running this race every year. It is my favorite thing that Cloverdale has to offer and I really can’t recommend it enough.

DIFFICULTY
3
PRODUCTION
5
SCENERY
4
SWAG
4

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Santa Rosa Marathon

Santa Rosa Marathon

The Santa Rosa Marathon is a must for anyone looking to score a PR. The course is fast (but not boringly pancake flat), the weather is cool, and the aid … MORE

The Santa Rosa Marathon is a must for anyone looking to score a PR. The course is fast (but not boringly pancake flat), the weather is cool, and the aid stations are frequent and well stocked. Scenery is mostly beautiful farmland, vineyards, and creekside pathway. The swag bag is AWESOME (a bottle of tasty DeLoach wine and the shirt or jackets are well made) and the finisher’s medal is seriously the best I’ve seen. This year it was a stained glass spinner. This is honestly one of my favorite races ever. So well put on. I’m hoping to use it to grab a BQ next year!

DIFFICULTY
2
PRODUCTION
5
SCENERY
4
SWAG
5

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Cloverdale Vineyard Races

Cloverdale Vineyard Races

This race is held in my hometown of Cloverdale, through beautiful working vineyards as the sun comes up in late October. Beautiful course. The course changes slightly every year (it's … MORE

This race is held in my hometown of Cloverdale, through beautiful working vineyards as the sun comes up in late October.

Beautiful course. The course changes slightly every year (it’s still a new-ish race and I think they’re finding what works best for runners and staff alike) and this year was all in vineyards. The first 20 miles the roads were hard packed dirt over rolling hills. Easy to run on with beautiful views. The last 6 miles were in a different vineyard where the ground was much softer. Parts were very grassy and you had to be wary of gopher holes. Not the most ideal footing for the last 6 miles of a marathon.

Lots of aid stations, I believe every 2-3 miles (stocked with fruit, water, Skratch hydration and some had GU). Porta-jons at every aid station. Many of the volunteers at the aid stations seemed a bit underwhelmed to be there. On a course such as this there are no spectator areas so the aid station volunteers are our only cheerleaders. I would have appreciated more encouragement. (Some were great, others just seemed bored.)

I think the course has room for improvement. I know that they have changed this event to be all vineyard running (previous years was partial vineyard, partial road). I appreciate them trying to get us in the vineyards 100% of the time, but the last portion was just a bit rough. I think this is a work in progress, though, and am definitely looking forward to improvements!

Post-race is great. Really cool live music, FREE RACE PHOTOS by Captivating Sports Photos (courtesy of Bear Republic – thanks, guys!), beer (again, Bear Republic) wine (Gallo? I think…) and brunch. All free for runners of the half or full marathon. Reasonably priced for 5k and 10k runners and guests.

I love this race. I’d love to see a couple improvements but I think they’ll get there.

DIFFICULTY
3
PRODUCTION
4
SCENERY
4
SWAG
3

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