running-Me on right
I mostly run on trails over the last 15 years. When I heard about the New L.A. Marathon course running from Dodger Stadium to Santa Monica I was convinced I needed to do it, even though I had almost no hope of runnning at my "days of glory" speed. (For someone my size I was kind of fast with a PR of 3hrs and 22 min for the Marathon)
I decided that it would make sense to train on pavement so I joined the L.A. Leggers.A group that trains in Santa Monica near the Pier on what would be part of the course. All my long runs on Saturday were with the Leggers. The Leggers are a great running group that provides plenty of people at various paces to train with, refreshments after (bagels,bananas) water stations, speakers etc. and a nice shirt all for 65 dollars/year! I did all the runs up to 22 miles with them. My last long run was 17.5 miles 2 weeks before the Marathon.
The new course was Stadium to the sea, the stadium was Dodger stadium (Frank Mccourt the owner of the Dodgers bought the rights to the Marathon), the sea was the Pacific and the finish two blocks north of the pier on Ocean and Santa Monica blvd.
Therefore it is a Point to point course, same as Boston or New York. But that does create a transportation problem. How do you get 25,000 people to the start and from the finish to wherever they are going?. The solution was for people to park in S.M. and shuttle to the start. Early!
I didn't like the idea of getting up at 3am on the day of a race so I came up with a public transportation idea both to and from the Marathon, In L.A.! And it only involved one transfer in each direction!. We would take the bus in to pick up our number and go to the expo on Saturday, then stay two blocks away for the start, walk to the start sunday morning, run the race and take the bus home, no car. we wouldn't have to wake up to 5:45am.
The marathon had several problems
expo- 1. They screwed up on numbers several people did not have numbers assigned and had
to agrue to get a new one.
2. Long lines to pick up numbers for no reason it wasn't crowded inside
3. They ran out of "goodie bags"
4. They ran out of t Shirts- Plan on a marathon with 25k and then not have enough shirts?
Day of race- Traffic was horrible, I heard it was backed up for miles, some people had to run to the start, what a great warmup! Why did they allow cars in to the area at all? The race therefore started 30 minutes late with several people arriving late and having to catch the pack.
Porta potties why did they put them in a place where you had to cross the course then announce that "you can't use the porta potties" ? Lovely, people peeing all over the lot, in the bushes, all over the place. They should of been on the side where the expo was, the Dodgers don't know how to handle crowds?
Course was great, support good
I felt a little patch of low energy at mile 16 and stopped for a quart of coke, I kind of lost some motivation as my friends went ahead. So I decided to walk much of the last 10. Nice to run through S.M.
Finish more screw ups, way too many people there. It took us 30-40 minutes to walk the half mile to our bags and the "beach party", what party? most of the booths were closing. It wasn't a party it was a corporate promotion event. Just like the coverage of the race, One giant commercial.Even the "editorial" content was a commercial.We are now at the Desani water 5 mile mark, or the blah blah 8 mile, whatever. Att phone was displayed and the features lauded by the "reporters".
Way too many people it took us 30 minutes to get to the S.M. bus which was involved in so much traffic it was delayed for an hour and we had to walk another mile or so to get down further in S.M. to eventually get a bus home. 2.5 hrs later!
Times were totally screwed up. Officially I did not finish. According to them my tracking device says I dropped between 3 miles and 6 miles.
Another day another race. I'm not even considering doing L.A. again unless there are major changes!