Monday, November 29, 2010

Certified Course – is so – is not

When is it a certified course and when it is not a certified course. Tonight, we had our monthly Charlotte Road Runners Club dinner and I the pleasure of setting next to Bobby and Cedric. Both men are veterans of the local running scene.

Well, with the GPS dialogue in full swing, it did take long before the discussion migrated over to certified courses. I guess this is the point where I opened my big month "no pun intended" about the South Park Turkey trot course.

My assertion was the course was long and I based this assertion on my observations while running the course during the race as well as from my review the certified map of the course. There were three separate intersections where were ran to the right of the corner. The certified course map made no mention of the need to run this far right of the turns. In fact, as I read the map, I should have been running right along the tangent.

Thus, I feel two assumptions can be made here. One, as I said above I felt the course was long. But I also feel a strong case can be made that we didn't run the certified course.

This is the point, where I differed from the Cedric and Bobby. My understanding of their agreement is that we still ran the certified course. Coning a course off so that runners no longer can run the course is well within the race director's right. And, I am not where to judge if and/or when he had the right to do so.

My point is if a race director cones a course such that it no longer follows the measured certified path, then the runners are no longer running the certified course. They are now running a variation of the certified course. And, if the race director wants to use this modified course for the reason of his own choosing, then, he should have the course certified with these modifications in mind.

The other point that Bobby made (I believe it was Bobby making it) is did the race director instruct people to run to the right of the cones. Honestly, I want to say no, but then there were 6000 people talking at the time. I could have easily missed him sharing this information with the runners.

And, I know I am making a mountain out of an ant hill and really have no idea why I am doing so.

Lastly, it cannot be said enough. I respect a person's right to their opinion regardless of whether I agree with it or not. I only ask they respect my right to express my opinion as well.


Thoughts from the Cool Down Runner

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