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@Tobycarrig

Sainte Genevieve, MO Raving since 2019 active 3 months, 3 weeks ago

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Future Races

Future Races (0)

Race Distance Location Date Paid

Past Races (20)

Race Distance Location Date Result My Raves My Performance
15K Springfield, MO Mar 14, 2020
Half Marathon Chicago, IL Jan 25, 2020
Half Marathon Springfield, MO Dec 28, 2019
Half Marathon Pinson, TN Dec 1, 2019
Half Marathon Salem, MO Nov 16, 2019
Half Marathon Clayton, MO Nov 3, 2019
Half Marathon Maryland Heights, MO Sep 21, 2019
Half Marathon Cobden, IL Jul 20, 2019
Half Marathon Millstadt, IL Jun 2, 2019
Half Marathon Memphis, TN May 25, 2019
Half Marathon Paducah, KY May 11, 2019
Half Marathon Indianapolis, IN May 4, 2019
Half Marathon Jonesboro, AR Apr 13, 2019
Half Marathon Springfield, IL Apr 6, 2019
Half Marathon Alton, IL Mar 23, 2019
Half Marathon St Louis, MO Mar 9, 2019
Half Marathon West Plains, MO Feb 16, 2019
Half Marathon Chicago, IL Jan 26, 2019
Half Marathon Springfield, MO Dec 29, 2018
Half Marathon Salem, MO Nov 17, 2018

My Raves

This was a smaller event as part of a weekend endurance running series. The course was mostly flat on a trail through Pinson Mounds Archaeological State Park. The lone "hill" … MORE

This was a smaller event as part of a weekend endurance running series.
The course was mostly flat on a trail through Pinson Mounds Archaeological State Park. The lone “hill” was in and out of the parking lot, which marked the end of a lap of the 2.9-mile course (After four full laps, the last half-lap was a short run around the mound). That location also served as an aid station. There also was a water cooler near a bathroom a little more than halfway through the loop.
The course was well-marked and the park had very little traffic except a few walkers.
The race organizer was good about communication and was friendly.
The event took place on a great day for running, mostly clear skies and cool. I climbed to the top of the mound before the run, and that was pretty neat.
The park is out there a little bit (I stayed in Jackson the night before) and the park was still closed when I arrived, which was probably an hour before the run but with a small number of runners, it was a pretty relaxed atmosphere.
Very cool finisher medal: a custom-made wood carving. Also had a trucker hat in the swag bag.

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This race ended up falling on what I believe was the hottest weekend of the year. In addition, this was a rolling hills course that would have been a challenge … MORE

This race ended up falling on what I believe was the hottest weekend of the year.
In addition, this was a rolling hills course that would have been a challenge regardless of the weather. There was a good climb early in the race and another in the first five miles. I don’t mind hills and I’ve probably done some races that had more hills involved, but with the weather combination, this was a tough run. There were some nice downhills in the final 4.5 miles but by that point it was hard to enjoy those.
(This was my personal worst: I finished about 27 minutes behind my typical marathon time and 33 minutes off my PR.)
I thought I had read in the race info that multiple aid stations would have oranges and such, so when I passed an early aid station where the oranges were still in their peels and I still had hopes of actually running this race in a decent time, I skipped the oranges thinking I would have another opportunity, but I did not.
The six aid stations on the course were standard. This race probably could use more, which I know is not an easy ask given its rural nature. But some other races I’ve been in have more without the weather conditions as brutal as this race.
The race information stated there would be a UTV on the course with wet towels and other assistance. There was not, which was disappointing. You can go a long way on this course and not see much in terms of people, and with the temperature as high as it was, it felt like it was a little dangerous. A UTV patrolling would have been a helpful thing.
The swag was great with a wine stopper finishers medal, a tank top t-shirt and a glass.
The post-race gathering at the winery wasn’t much to write home about. Providing food would have been a nice touch, especially at the end of such a rough run. There was not much enticement to stick around.
The race director was great about communication, especially after the fact with explaining the issues that came up during the preparations leading to the event.
You know you’re probably in for a hot day when you sign up, and it ended up being a very hot day, so any additional course support would have been helpful.
I did four “hot weather” half marathons from late May to September, hoping I would be satisfied with my effort at one of them. This was the biggest challenge of them. I really liked the course — very rural, hills, relaxing, and it tempts you to want to run it again and post a better time. But I don’t know if this is a run I would do again because, while the swag is cool, the feeling at the finish didn’t seem to be worth the struggle to get there.

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I'll try not to whine about the weather but the highlight of this run comes at the finish line. In addition to a nice medal, the post-race event includes live … MORE

I’ll try not to whine about the weather but the highlight of this run comes at the finish line.
In addition to a nice medal, the post-race event includes live music and a food tent/buffet with pizza, boneless chicken, mini cheeseburger, barbecue slider, mini cupcakes, doughnut balls, pretzels and the usual suspects of apples, bananas and oranges plus free beer as well as water. It’s a nice post-race party.
The Friday expo at a hall connected to the Peabody hotel was not much to write home about. In addition to registration and a race information booth, the vendors were services such as chiropractic, yoga, lasik surgery, etc. The swag was a toothbrush and Prairie Farms (dairy) treat in addition to the nice t-shirt.
The half marathon started at 7 a.m., and while I know that is customary, I would not complain with a 6:30 or 6:45 start. It got warm (70s into the low 80s during the race) and the breeze and shady spots were quite welcome in the second half of the race.
The first few miles through downtown, including Beale Street, were a lot of fun. There was a bottleneck in the first mile as two open lanes of roadway were funneled into one at the top of the first hill making a right turn. After the field thinned out, the course was well-marked with law enforcement and volunteers doing a good job at nearly all the intersections along the course.
There were plenty of water/Powerade stations with many offering chilled wet towels.
Other than volunteers, there weren’t too many people along the course. The heat may have been a factor. It ranges from downtown to residential to undeveloped before making the turn to roadway along the river. There were no misting stations along the course or even yard sprinklers set out (as I have seen at smaller races).
The highlight of the closing miles is the King of the Hill run up a bridge just before the 11-mile mark. It was the only place I recall music being played, as an announcer encouraged runners to attack the hill and/or get a beer from water station at the start of the bridge. There was a $500 prize for the roughly 200-yard run with the top male doing it in 31 seconds.
That climb, followed immediately by a downhill, and a couple early inclines weren’t too bad, and the rest of the course was flat or very gradual. It’s easy on the legs, but the heat was just a challenge with it being one of the first 90° days after a rather mild spring.

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The Iron Mom is a well-organized and well-supported run that passes through some residential areas, runs briefly along a highway before going through city parks and along a trail. The … MORE

The Iron Mom is a well-organized and well-supported run that passes through some residential areas, runs briefly along a highway before going through city parks and along a trail. The closing miles are through a residential area back to downtown and along the flood wall and river.
It has varying scenery and is mostly flat except the residential area on the west end of the course around miles 4 to 6.5. Not long after that, the course covers a trail in the woods that was enjoyable to run. A warning was given about muddy stretches but thankfully it was not bad. After the trail between the parks, the closing stretch is flat as you head toward the river. A drum line plays near the finish and the announcer called out the runners and relay teams.
Nice finishing area atmosphere with vendors, bananas, cookies, milk, OJ and chocolate milk.
The course was well-controlled with many roads closed to traffic, most intersections manned and law enforcement present where needed to control traffic.
A good amount of people cheered along the course, in the first six miles especially but also in the park and the closing stretch. A lot of the local runners were greeted by name by friends along the route.
Water stations were enthusiastic and plentiful, more than I anticipated. They tried to service both sides of the road.
Also, there are three relay exchange locations, and they also cheered on the runners.
Chip-timed, I think, but no on-course splits. I have to look when results come out but the slip I printed had my gun time and chip time as the same and I was about 3 seconds to the start in the record field of about 900 runners.
The medal was decent, as was the long sleeve tech shirt.
I did my packet pickup Friday night at the small expo at the Holiday Inn, which also was where I stayed. There was some merchandise available at both the expo and the finish area.
The weather turned out perfect, despite the threat of rain. It held off until after noon. Mid-50s, but I understand it can get warm this time of year. I would’ve like a gear check of some sort since I wasn’t sure if I would be wearing an extra layer before the start, but there also was parking close to the start/finish if needed.
I walked from the hotel to the race, and also dinner at Max’s Brick Oven the night before. In addition to post-race food vendors, there was a farmers market, bakery, sweet shop and restaurants in the vicinity in the historic downtown. Very convenient.

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With thousands of people in the field, it would be easy to feel like just one of the masses, but this half marathon is "an event," and one that is … MORE

With thousands of people in the field, it would be easy to feel like just one of the masses, but this half marathon is “an event,” and one that is worthy of the crowd it draws.
I only made it in for the end of the Friday night race expo but it is large, with vendors offering a variety of products for sale and for free (Got a free shirt and two nice gear bags). I missed one of presentations I wanted to see but there were event information booths and plenty of volunteers.
The expo takes place in the convention center, attached to many Marriott brand hotels, so it makes for a nice atmosphere with thousands of runners milling about.
The swag is OK with the tech shirt. They sell a ton of other merchandise (and it looks like the year-old stuff is offered on deep discount with all the communication they send out, which reduces my incentive to buy this year.)
My hotel room overlooked the starting area, and I watched the pre-race festivities for the 5K on local TV while watching the runners gather in the street below.
The starting area is well-organized with corrals. There is plenty of support and event information.
The course itself is very easy, largely flat. The biggest incline was entering the Indianapolis Motor Speedway as part of a downhill/uphill combo. There was another slight incline in mile 12 onto the bridge over the White River. Otherwise, nothing notable in terms of hills. This could be a great course for PRs if you can get a clear path and the right weather conditions (which was the case in 2019 with mid-50s and light drizzle).
Chip-timed, of course, with splits for every 5k included in the results. On course, each mile marker has a clock corresponding to the gun time, which is a nice feature.
I expected it to be crowded, and it was, but it wasn’t too tight so as to be frustrating. I anticipated a conservative first few miles navigating people and while that was part of it, the pack kept moving and there was always a path for passing. There are probably some newcomers in the field, so you will see people stopping without signaling or walking in the middle of the flow. But, as mentioned, this is an event, so many are taking in the spectacle of running on the speedway, listening to the entertainment, and just enjoying the camaraderie of running.
Other than the beginning, the tightest part of the course seems to be Main Street in Speedway, which also is a stretch with a lot of spectator support.
The speedway itself is so large, it takes a bit to realize you are running inside of a sports stadium, but it is cool. There are several cheerleading groups along the oval, the sixth mile paying tribute to those who died in military service is moving to the point of putting a lump in your throat, and just the venue size is impressive. While I am a sports fan, I had never been to the speedway, and that was part of the attraction of the event for me, and it was worth it. The scenery grade is largely for that.
I am still a newcomer to this distance, and at some point in the races I question whether I really enjoy running 13.1 miles. This race has enough going on between the speedway, the bands, DJs, cheerleaders and spectators lining the course, and just people who came out of their houses and cheered that those thoughts never crossed my mind.
You will always have dozens of people around you to run with and pass, if those things help keep you going.
The finish area is well-organized with a half-block walk-through to get water, the medal, a banana, Clif bar, pretzels, Gatorade, a cookie, post-race photos.
The medal is neat, with a race car graphic on the front and the course map etched in the back side.
I was looking forward to the post-race party, but while the weather was great for running, it was not great for standing outside in wet clothes after running.
If the schedule allows, I would likely run again next year.

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Well-organized half-marathon with adequate aid stations and a nice health fair near the finish on the Arkansas State University campus. The course had a few little hills to navigate, one … MORE

Well-organized half-marathon with adequate aid stations and a nice health fair near the finish on the Arkansas State University campus.
The course had a few little hills to navigate, one at around 6 miles and a gradual uphill toward the finish in the final mile. Nice run through town but not great scenery. The course is marked with cones in streets with multiple traffic lanes and motorists were good about being aware of runners. Most major intersections were manned with volunteers. One stretch in the second half was unclear whether runners should be on the left or right side of the road but there was very little traffic on that street (which had an “unofficial (unmarked)” aid station with doughnuts, Fireball and other alcohol drinks.) Good number of aid stations and course support for a smaller event.
Starting line (slight uphill start) did not have a chip strip so all runners were on gun time. No splits offered on the course.
Swag: The largest finishers medal of the eight half marathons I’ve run in the last six months. Very cool.
I believe it has cash prizes to the very top finishers, and they had a masters winner as well as age groups. Nice award ceremony takes place on stage in the ASU convocation center, where a very large health fair is taking place. (Great chance to walk around and load up on free items like stress balls and pens).
They were out of my size hoodie the day of the race, but offered a t-shirt or to be put a list for the hoodie. I received a nice fleece zip-up two weeks after the event.
I came in the night before and filled up on pasta at Lazzari Italian Oven.
I would recommend this run, and I will consider returning if it fits the schedule.

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Extremely well-organized with a great finisher's medal for the 55th annual running. I chose this race over several other regional options that weekend in part because of the cool medal … MORE

Extremely well-organized with a great finisher’s medal for the 55th annual running.
I chose this race over several other regional options that weekend in part because of the cool medal and the atmosphere (medium-sized with plenty of community support; a good-sized field to have company on the run yet not too crowded).
The course is what they say: flat first half, some gradual and rolling hills in the second half before flattening out again in the final mile. It is scenic for those into that, running past Lincoln’s home, the state capitol, Lincoln’s tomb and two nice parks.
I caught just the end of the pre-race expo to pick up my packet and a nice quarter-zip tech pullover top. The race info booth was very helpful. While there was not a course elevation map, she explained the hills accurately. The biggest climb seems to be just after the water station at 7.75 miles but three others follow in the cemetery and park.
A Lincoln impersonator speaks before the muskets signal the race start. There were pace runners. Plenty of aid stations and enthusiastic supporters all along the course. Very good community support.
The race is chip timed with a split at the 10k mark, just before the first of the hills.
Lincoln was on hand at the finish and for photo opportunities as well.
Good post-race atmosphere at the Old Capitol with a live band, doughnuts, one free beer, much more.
Dined the night before at Saputo and stayed at Wyndham. Everything was within walking distance.
I’m not one for race pictures but the photographers were at various spots on the course and a good array of photos were available for purchase.

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This course offed some nice scenery running on the Clark Bridge over the Mississippi River, into Missouri, along the river and back, then along the river in Illinois. It is … MORE

This course offed some nice scenery running on the Clark Bridge over the Mississippi River, into Missouri, along the river and back, then along the river in Illinois. It is not particularly hilly other than running up and down some levees and the bridge. The challenging part was running into an easterly wind for miles 3-4.5 in Missouri and then especially for miles 8-10.25 in Illinois. Being along the river, it seems the wind would be a factor in some way every year.
Chip timing with a split given for the 5-mile mark.
Adequate number of aid station present, though not a lot of spectators along the route. Much of the running in Missouri is a roadway into a wildlife wetlands and on the Illinois side is one lane of a highway and the top of a levee, so it’s not through residential or commercial areas where people might come out to watch.
The swag was ok, nothing special. A water bottle, nice long-sleeve tech shirt and standard finisher’s medal, although I like their logo with the distinctive Clark Bridge.
I picked up this race because I had a gap in my schedule and wanted to stay sharp between some other half marathons. I’m happy I ran it and would run it again, but it’s a very basic event, a good challenge. The weather was really good in 2019, and I imagine it could really be something exposed along the river with cooler temps or more wind.

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The 2019 event was postponed one day from Saturday to Sunday by the threatening weather; the communication from race organizer Missouri Runs was good. They set up another packet pickup … MORE

The 2019 event was postponed one day from Saturday to Sunday by the threatening weather; the communication from race organizer Missouri Runs was good. They set up another packet pickup on Saturday, which was helpful since the first pickup was 11-5 on a Friday.
Swag included a pint glass and quarter zip tech pullover. The finishers medal was cool as well.
Race parking was limited in the park. Shuttle service from the Family Arena parking lot across the river in St. Charles arena was smooth and efficient.
The course starts and ends around the lake in Creve Coeur Park, follows a paved path toward the Missouri River, crosses the river and covers a brief section of the Katy Trail, then comes back on largely the same route (but a different side of the lake). The course’s biggest hills are the approaches to the bridge on both sides of the river. And there is an uphill around mile 2 leaving the park and getting into the bike trail, which is a downhill for mile 11 or so. Otherwise, largely flat.
The weather ended up perfect on race day. A little wind was blowing from the west, particularly noticeable at the end, running the last quarter mile or so on the north end of the lake.
Adequate aid stations on the course and I believe there were race photographers but otherwise not many people along the course. The only place for spectators other than the park is a parking spot near the Katy Trail in St. Charles County. But this is a good course to take in the scenery in the flats running toward the bridge and then crossing the river.

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Thankfully, an ice storm the evening before the race didn't wipe it out. Organizers were good about sending out information, including course conditions in the early hours of Saturday morning. … MORE

Thankfully, an ice storm the evening before the race didn’t wipe it out.
Organizers were good about sending out information, including course conditions in the early hours of Saturday morning. The course was in very good shape considering the elements, as the storm was not too bad compared to a few miles north.
The start/finish is in a shopping mall parking lot, and a nearby fire station houses the check-in and post-race activities. Not a lot of room but better than standing out in the cold.
This is not chip timed, no splits on the course.
The course has some hills, notably one in the first mile, another in the sixth mile and then one around the 11-mile mark that may have the steepest grade of any hill I’ve run all year.
Good on-course support. For a small town, there are some people out to cheer you on in addition to monitoring intersections.
West Plains is a Missouri high school cross country power so the field for this event includes several young runners, and I believe that contributes to some of the spectators coming out to watch, which is nice.
This is well-organized for a small town, and the course was a good challenge.
Swag included a long-sleeve shirt. Finisher medals are nice and age group winners get a second one.
I stayed in a new hotel just up the hill from the start and had Friday night pasta at Roma, also near the starting area.

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If you know what the F3 stands for (freaking frozen are in there), the race lived up to its name in 2019, but I think that's part of the appeal. … MORE

If you know what the F3 stands for (freaking frozen are in there), the race lived up to its name in 2019, but I think that’s part of the appeal. Dealing with the elements is part of the challenge.
The temperature was in single digits with a dangerous cold front blasting through the Midwest for this year’s race.
I came in Friday morning to pick up my packet at the South Loop Fleet Feet, and I was glad I stayed at a hotel within walking distance to the start/finish at Soldier Field.
The swag included a nice hat and matching long scarf. Great winter accessories. A decent medal for the 10th anniversary. Some other race merchandise was available for purchase.
The communication and production were excellent. Many advisories about running in the extreme cold came via email.
Some snow showers (apparently unexpected to the people at Fleet Feet) came in later Friday night yet the course was pretty clear, except for one short patch of crunchy ice closing in on the halfway point. I think my lower body clothing was covered in salt by race end, but that’s ok.
The space inside Soldier Field for pre- and post-race activities is great for getting out of the elements, with adequate bathrooms.
Race day itself was sunny and not much wind, so near perfect except the cold.
The start was done in waves with pacers.
The course begins with a lap around the west side of Soldier Field and then has a bottleneck getting onto the paved bike trail. There was another bottleneck at the one-mile mark as you run through the finish area. We came to a brief stop there. Other than that, the course was well-marked though a little tight at times.
Plenty of aid stations, but again the traffic was something to navigate there.
Chip-timed with a number of split times recorded.
I like urban courses and Chicago is one of my favorite cities, so I enjoyed the scenery coming back (north) toward the loop on the out-and-back course.
Since it’s January in Chicago, you’re going to have to deal with some things. The experience was very helpful in events I’ve run since.
This event is very well-run but it was crowded in spots on the course, so being patient with the first mile or two is helpful.
Race photographers offered some nice free photos. Results are scrolled on a wall inside the stadium club after the race.
There was a post-race party (with one free drink) at the nearest bar, walkable from Soldier Field.
They had a gear check station to organize runners’ belongings.
If you can stand the cold, this is a neat event. I’ve already signed up to try to do better in 2020.

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This was my second half-marathon, and of the eight I've run in the last six months, this is indeed the flattest. Some of the streets have slight inclines but nothing … MORE

This was my second half-marathon, and of the eight I’ve run in the last six months, this is indeed the flattest. Some of the streets have slight inclines but nothing I would call a hill.
It’s late December, so that limits the amount of festivities and spectators. It runs through a residential area and a park but there are not many people out to watch the race.
The course is kind of like a figure-8 hourglass, two loops with a connector street where the aid station is located. So, in running the 3.3-mile course, a runner passes they aid station twice each lap.
Runners also pass the start/finish line four times, and the chip-timed event gives runners a split for each lap.
The nice part is that one doesn’t feel alone on the course, in part because of the connector part of the course where you see other runners coming or going and because the race also includes a full marathon and endurance runs, so there are many runners at various paces throughout the day.
The post-race tent features pizza and plenty of food and drink.
Long-sleeve tech shirt and a great large medal.
It was chilly (28 degrees and overcast at the start, with a brief warmup when the sun tried to poke through) but comfortable with no wind, no snow to navigate.
For those who like cold weather and a flag course, I recommend this. If the weather cooperates, this is a good place for PRs.

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This was my first half marathon, and perhaps it was good to be ignorant of the fact not all courses are this hilly. The event includes a pasta dinner with … MORE

This was my first half marathon, and perhaps it was good to be ignorant of the fact not all courses are this hilly.
The event includes a pasta dinner with the packet pickup on Friday and features guest speakers in keeping with the event’s name, honoring those who served in the military.
As for race morning, use the port-a-potties at the park because there are only two at the starting line for the half-marathon.
It’s a point-to-point race, so a bus takes runners to the half-marathon start, which is the middle of nowhere. The ride offers a preview of much of the course. They were still setting up gear check after we arrived. It was chilly, but everyone got off the bus for the 20 to 30 minutes before the race. I believe the bus had a bathroom that was available in addition to the two port-a-potties.
There is a pre-race ceremony. It was shorter than expected and I was in line for one last restroom visit when the countdown for the start began.
This is not chip-timed, there are no split times on the course.
It was a great day to run. The course has long rolling hills, but the good news is that the reward for the hills is the downhill runs that follow. Two of the three hills on the highway are in the first four miles; the one up to Fugitve Beach (mile 4) seems to be the biggest at about 150 feet. As a first-time runner of this distance, the first 10 miles running on the shoulder of a highway felt good. The last 5K, however, also is gradually uphill (more than 100 feet; I just saw the elevation map for this run for the first time recently). It is on a paved trail. Given the winter weather, part of the trail had some slippery patches to navigate.
This is definitely a challenging course (halfmarathons.net says 658 foot gain) but that makes other half marathons look manageable by comparison.
I was happy with my run.
The aid stations are abundant, well-spaced and provide good boosts. Runners can vote for the most enthusiastic. The stations are important because this is a point-to-point course that is very rural for the first nine miles, so a lot of running alone.
Nice shirts and finisher medals.
The post-race gathering also is done well, with food and massage services. Nice awards for age group winners (I think I was the only one in my group). The post-race gathering is indoors, which makes it very comfortable.
A lot of veterans run the race and the focus is on the military, which makes for a good atmosphere.
I would run this race again, keeping in mind to be prepared for the situation at the start and the course itself.

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