Minneapolis Marathon

Minneapolis Marathon

Minneapolis Marathon

( 6 reviews )
50% of reviewers recommend this race
  • Minneapolis,
    Minnesota,
    United States
  • June
  • 13.1 miles/Half Marathon, 26.2 miles/Marathon, Relay
  • Road Race
  • Event Website

John

Denver, Colorado, United States
7 2
2014
"Disappointing"
Overall
T-Shirts/SWAG
Aid Stations
Course Scenery
Expo Quality
Elevation Difficulty
Parking/Access
Race Management
John 's thoughts:

Signed up for the Minneapolis Marathon after it was added to "Nine of the Best New Marathons in 2014" but Runner's World. It was going to be the second organized race I've run in (the other the Cleveland Half 2014). From the start it was several notches below Cleveland.

First of all, the website and general feel of the race is cheap. They were slow to update things on the website and sometimes never did post items/info they said were coming. Email correspondence was adequate but certainly not comparable to Cleveland or Seattle (which I ran due to this one being cancelled).

The Expo was well located at a downtown hotel, parking for the Expo was more challenging but not impossible. The Expo it's was small. Very little to look at or purchase. If you don't need any last second stuff it's fine but don't count on buying something you need there for the race the next day. The organization of it left some to be desired. I had a few questions to get answered while there; the volunteers there were helpful in trying to point me to someone who could answer questions but there just weren't many people there who knew the race details.

As for the race, a total disaster. From the day Weather Channel's 10 day forecast included June 1 there was always a chance of rain. The 'Minneapolis Marathon' Facebook page said that they would post announcements at "4 AM, 5 AM, 5:30 AM AND 6:00AM". I woke up on June 1 at 4:30 it was raining and there was lightning/thunder; however there was no announcement on the Facebook page as they had indicated. So, I went through my routine and got ready. At 5:30am, just before we headed to the starting line they posted a message, delaying the start until 7:30am, with another update coming at 7am. So, I went back to my room and relaxed for an hour, reconvened at 6:30am (no announcements since 5:30am) and headed to the starting area. 7am came and went w/ no announcement as Team Ortho stated, so we paid the $20 charge to park by start line. At this point it was raining but the lightning/thunder had stopped at around 6:30am. At 7:15am still no update so we got out and went to the starting area. 7:30am came and went with no update but no start to the race even though the 6,500+ runners were all at the starting line. At about 7:40am someone from Team Ortho came to the start line to and anncounced that the race had been cancelled due to imminent threat of lightning and flooding that was 105 minutes away. And just like that they began breaking everything down.

Since it wasn't storming or even really raining when they made the announcement, 2 friends and I decided to run the half-marathon course since it would run us back to downtown where our hotel was. The course they had set was average. First 6 miles through neighborhoods, then miles 6-10 thru what seemed like an industrial area north of the city before getting to road that runs along the Mississippi River which was cool. We completed the half-marathon course almost exactly 105 minutes after they cancelled the race promising 'lightning and heavy rains'; it did not and was not raining/storming and was actually clearing up by that point.

Throughout the day on Sunday we got a series of emails from Team Ortho addressing the decision to cancel the race. The first email pointed the finger at Minneapolis Police and their weather team, saying they had decided the race could not be run. The next email was from Team Ortho was the predictable "we are responsible for all our runners and volunteers and for your safety we had no choice but the cancel the race" angle. The next email was that due to the costs they incurred to set the race up there are no refunds (which it states when you sign up and I understand). Finally, they sent an email saying anyone that signed up for another Team Ortho race in 2014 or the 2015 Minneapolis Marathon will get a $20 credit towards that race. I small gesture compared to the time & money I had spent to get to that point.

Overall, I can't state my disappointment in the lack of management more strongly. I understand that Team Ortho can't control the weather but they can have a plan in place on how to deal with it and effectively communicate that plan to the runners. They did neither in my opinion. Given the time, money & energy invested in that event by all the runners, I think we deserved so much more that what we got. My feeling is that the lack of leadership & organization by Team Ortho led them to cancel them to cancel a race that could have and should have been run. I will run more marathons but will stay away from Team Ortho events as a result of my experience in Minneapolis.

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