Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Another Kick at the 100M Creemore Can?


The concept of a Fatass race is very romantic and enticing.  No entry fee, no bib, typically manual timing, Runners fend for themselves and their fellow runners.  The antithesis of an organized, flawless, antiseptic road race.  Don't like something and want to blame someone?  Point at yourself, as you forgot the glide / gels / spare batteries.  Then ask your fellow runner for help.  She just happened to pack 200 Ibuprofen.  Who doesn't?

A Fatass is a distinct running experience, stripped of all the packaging and restrictions that surround a typical race.  They can be a wonderful experience.  In the summer.  Holding an event without volunteers (aid station, marshals, timing, sweepers, trail set-up), medical, police, port-a-potties, showers or a heated room in the winter is not such a romantic idea...

Borderline dangerous.

Some would even have the temerity to state that the border is well into the realm of chaos.  I'm not one to be overly cautious (those who claim that I have tried to kill them on a cliff run can stop laughing) but I still cringe when thinking of the 100 mile runners out in the wilds of Creemore in December.  No one ran into significant difficulty.  Except for Rob Gryfe, no one went off course.  We think.  In summer if you must sleep, you lie down near the trail and take a nap.  Not such a good idea in December.

Dave Robinson (ran the 2012 Creemore 100M) emailed me recently and asked if the event was on this year.  See above first paragraph for the answer.  However, running a 50M event is NOT such a dangerous idea.  This may come back to bite me, but there is a significant difference between running all day, and running all day and night.  As a reflection item after the 2012 Creemore 100M, I thought of what I would change, if (when) someone asked if the run was a go in 2013.  Here are a few of the items:

Make it a 50 mile race.  See above, again, for reasons why.

Hold the race earlier.  Say, November 2, 2013, 1 week after Horror Hill.  There is less chance of inclimate weather.  In Creemore, inclimate weather means you die within 90 minutes of losing electrical power.  The days are slightly longer, so less running in the dark.

Hold the run at a larger venue.  My house is not a mansion.  I think "shack" is the correct visual.  One bathroom?  You're killing me!

Make the run invite only.  This avoids an issue we encountered in 2010 (CH 100M) when a few people showed up who had never run 100 mile race before, or had not run in years!  I just know that I would be to blame if something went wrong and it was discovered I "let" them run...

The "invite" would be a general broadcast to Ontario ultra runners, then it would be up to you to invite yourself.  Anyone who has not run a 50 mile would need a sponsor/pacer.

Optional start times.  Let's say, any time between 06:00 AM and 09:00 AM.  Why kill yourself getting to Dunedin at 06:00 if you can run 50M in 6 hours?  You set your starting time and keep tracks of your loop times, if there is no timing volunteer.

Finally, chose a challenging course.  The Creemore 100 mile course had to be easy (sorry Stephan, I can think of no other way of describing a 10.5K loop course that is almost all downhill) as runners were attempting to complete 100M in Creemore in winter conditions.  I like the OUS Spring Warm-up course.  it is tough and scenic.  Lee Anne runs an option that avoids the technical section of the Bruce Trail and is about 3K longer.

Optional course.  6 loops of 13K (official Spring Warm-up course) or 5 loops of the 16K "road" SW course.  Those wanting desperately to make their run 50M can add a 2K spur.

The only remaining item is to determine if the run should be held.  If yes, I will rent the Dunedin hall (if it is available), supply water and mark the trails.  I anticipate there will be interest from enough runners to hold the event and I expect a few of the "currently injured" might round out the volunteers.  It is also near Lee Anne's 60th birthday...  Hmmm...

Let me know if you would like to participate in any capacity.  Open positions are:

Race Director
Trail marker
Aid station vollies
Fanatically loyal fans
Tailor (this slipped in here somehow)


Where:  Dunedin Community Centre
When:   Saturday, November 2, 2013
Start:     06:00 to 09:00
Cutoff:  18:00 (6:00 PM)
Showers:  No
Course:  13K or 16K
Aid:      1 supported (S/F) and 1 unsupported (6K point)
Bring:  Anything and everything that you intend to use/consume/apply during the run.

You will note I have avoided using the term "race".  This is because there will be no insurance and probably no medical, traffic control, marshals, etc. that are integral to a race.  You want insurance?

Bring it!

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