Sunday, October 2, 2011

2011 Ponsetti Races 5 & 10K, Iowa City, Iowa

Saturday, October 1st started out as a very cold yet sunny day. The weather was around 45 degrees and the air was crisp. My friend Amber showed up at my house at around 8a.m. and brought Alyssa and I to the race. This year the race started at the Sports Medicine clinic so we parked over near that. Everything started out well, there were activities for children. Herky the Hawk arrived and then the opening ceremony was amazing.   This race was dedicated to Caroline Found, see this link There were doves released at the beginning of the race with her teammates all standing around the doves.  I have a picture of that below.  Then there were a few announcements and we were going to start the race.  However then an announcement came that said, "There are people that are running the 10K race that haven't found parking yet so we have to push the race start back."  My friend and I both discussed this and this is what I think, when you come to do a race you get there an hour early like the rest of us so we can start the race on time and if you miss the start of the race because YOU got there late, that is YOUR fault and you should miss it.  So as a result of this the 10K race started late, then the 5K races lined up, but NO ONE in the back heard go, so all of a sudden I noticed a bunch of people were moving and said to those around me, "It looks like the race started, guess we go.  I ran fast and got a pretty good start, but wasn't happy that I missed the starting gun and wondered if I missed valuable time.  We were chiped timed, however the starting mats were gone so we didn't have a starting time.  Last year there were starting mats that we had to pass over and we were being chip timed by the same company as last year so I don't understand where the mats were.

 There was only one clock going and that was for the 10K racers and no one seemed to know how long after the 10K people started that the 5K people started.  It was so disorganized and both my friend and I were frustrated.  At the end of the race I tried to find someone in charge. Finally I located a woman dressed in purple and I asked her this, "Do you know where the instant result machine is so I can find out my time or do you know where the results will be posted?"  She snapped at me and said, "We don't have one this year and that guy over there is doing the timing" as she pointed to some random guy over by the finishing line.

I walked over to this guy and asked about the results and if there was an instant results machine like last year.  He said, "We couldn't have the instant results machine because we don't have an internet connection."  Now this is where I was totally confused because we were at the Sports Medicine clinic that HAS INTERNET and the building was open so people could go inside and use their bathrooms so he could go in there and use their internet.

The other thing about this race that was completely annoying was that the course changed completely from last year.  Last year we started at the University of Iowa over by the stadium and we ran West on Melrose Street all the way to Mormon Trek Blvd. and then on some trail that led us back to the University.  My time last year was 28:02 and I hoped to finish faster this year.  However, the course was changed to running through the cross country course on grass and up hills and the grass was rough and had some holes and was uneven.  The water stop was poorly placed so you couldn't get to it unless you went out of your way, off the race course, to get water.  I just skipped it.  Then we had to run on sidewalks back to the sports medicine clinic. 

The race officials let people run with their dogs and people run with strollers and that creates problems everytime race directors allow this.  Try running with dogs chasing you, or dogs crossing in front of you on their leashes.  I almost tripped twice.  There were many people that obviously never ran with their dog until this race and obviously didn't know what to do to keep their dog beside them and not let their dog cross out in front of others.  People with strollers I don't mind, but they shouldn't be allowed to be in the middle of the race, only in the back with the walkers.  I feel this way because the back wheels of the strollers sometimes trip people up if the runner with the stroller isn't paying attention.  I once got sideswiped by a stroller when running, so I'm very opposed to strollers up with the runners.

Lastly, by the time all the 10K runners finished, most of the food was gone.  The race people didn't plan well for all the racers to get food.  This was one instance I was grateful that I did the 5k race so I could get a bagel.

Here are some results for us, however there won't be all the results because whoever is in charge of posting those to the Ponsetti website still hasn't done that.

I had a time of 29:08 and placed 3rd in my age group.  When you finally go to the results on the website you will see that I'm 4th of 15 of the 35-39 year olds.  However this is what I found out after the race.  The person listed before me on the results named Elisabeth Erickson didn't really run.  A friend of hers that is 12 years younger ran for her since she couldn't be there.  This means Elisabeth Erickson was a no show and wasn't the person that was really 3rd.  Kelsey, who is 27, was the person who ran for her and she would be in two age groups ahead of me.  This threw off the results.  But it didn't matter in the end because the person in charge of the race said this, "We aren't doing age group awards anyway so it doesn't matter.  We are only doing awards for top 3 Overall."

Alyssa's time was 37 minutes on the dot and she placed 6th of 16 in her age group of 14 and Under.  The most awesome thing about this is, her last 5K time was 38:29 so she beat her time by 1 minute 29 seconds.

You can see how sunny it was from how we were squinting.  In this picture is Amber, Alyssa and Me.

Amber and I taking a picture of ourselves.

The timing chips on our shoes.

Hawkeye cheerleaders.

Some doves being released before the race.

Alyssa with Herky.

Amber playing checkers on the giant checkerboard.

Alyssa and i right before the race started.

Another picture with Alyssa.

Alyssa about to cross the finish line.  She beat her last 5K time.

Amber just crossed the finish line.
My results, to see them better double click on the picture to enlarge it.

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