Overall Rating
Overall Rating (1 Review)
2
(1 Ratings)(1 Review)
DIFFICULTY
1
SCENERY
4
PRODUCTION
2
SWAG
4
The Overlake Medical Center Labor Day Half offers one of the FLATTEST half marathon courses in Western Washington with less than 130 feet of cumulative elevation gain/loss over the 13.1 mile course, runners come from all over to gain their personal best! This event also serves as the Northwest USA … MORE
Local Weather (Sep 02)
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H (°F) 77 75 88 66 67
L (°F) 59 52 58 57 54
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    thestudadam FIRST-TIMER '17

    I would rate this race higher but during the 2017 race they committed the cardinal sin of race management. Their course was too short by between .5 and .6 miles … MORE

    I would rate this race higher but during the 2017 race they committed the cardinal sin of race management. Their course was too short by between .5 and .6 miles

    Expo Quality: I didn’t attend the Expo proper but the morning of there were a few booths set up around the start area which seemed appropriate for a race of this size.

    Parking/Access: This race was run out of a mall parking lot which meant that parking was plentiful and easy to find very close to the start area. Probably the easiest access of any race I have ever run.

    Shirts/SWAG: The shirt for this race was actually a pullover which was a nice change of pace from the many T-shirts you begin to accumulate over time while racing. The medal was also of nice quality and size. No real complaints although the designs were nothing special which is why only 4 stars.

    Course/Elevation/Aid Stations: Aid stations were pretty spread out on this course which adds a little difficulty especially when this was such a hot day, but I didn’t find them to be lacking in water/electrolytes and the number of stations was decent for a race of this size. It really is a flat course for the most part, you essentially run a big loop/square, the first half along the shoulder of a road and the 2nd half along a green belt path. About the half was point in the course you find the only out an back, just a quick jut up the trail for what should be a half mile to add distance before rounding a cone and following the green belt back to the finish. This is where the error was made, likely just a miscommunication between a volunteer and an official who told them to put a cone at a half mile, someone thought it meant total distance added, the other thought it meant a half mile out and a half mile back, most people with GPS watches immediately noticed that the 6 and 7 mile markers were way to close but hoped that it was just a misplaced mile marker and not an error on the course, sadly it was the latter. The first half of the course is not very pretty and just along the road, the 2nd half if really quite nice along the green belt and is enjoyable.

    Race Management: Aside from the already discussed short course I have a few other things that could be improved and some to really compliment. No real start corrals or division by expected pace meant quite a jumble at the start and some very slow people to dodge in the first few hundred yards, very frustrating. Also the green belt is still fully open to the public which means people running on the course or walking on it sometimes in the opposite direction. Some things to compliment, aside from the ease of access they had plenty of port-o-potties to use before the race although they were not immediately noticeable and instead people were waiting in huge lines for the public mall bathrooms. Also I’m a sucker for any event that has a free kids race/ kids dash which helps get the future generations of runners interested.

    Overall if they didn’t mess up the course I would give this race a 3 star rating and am still willing to recommend it. If they could keep the course a little more closed and do a better job separating people by pace I would even consider giving it 4 stars.

    DIFFICULTY
    1
    PRODUCTION
    2
    SCENERY
    4
    SWAG
    4
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