Latest reviews by Jordan Lanfair

(2015)
"Grab your headlamp and plan a winter runcation"
Overall
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Course Scenery
Expo Quality
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Overall this race is something that as long as it is happening, should be a goal for you to run. Zurich looks like the city from "Frozen" so much so that you feel like you'll see Olaf wave to you as you warm up. The communication prior to the run was pretty good, a lot of it was on the website and a week prior to the race, an email warning about the weather and possible equipment needs and safety concerns were announced.

T-Shirts/SWAG: This is an interesting one. If you don't want a t-shirt or medal, you don't have to buy one. You don't have to pay for anything except race entry when you sign up, which means if you want to run on a total budget, you can skip the SWAG and keep the experience. That said, I opted for the deluxe package. The T-Shirt from Mizuno is dri-fit and comfortable. The Champagne is awesome and my wife and I celebrated the new year walking to the train with it. The medal is a small little wonderful piece of hardware. There are set up photo stations and they are easy to access should you want them.

Aid Stations: Few and far between. For a 10K I thought the stations were hard to find and scant, I can't fully imagine what it was like for the half marathon or marathon runners. An aid station would be welcome during the return route if only to show someone a friendly face during their run.

Course Scenery: If you can see it, it's beautiful. The trails are gorgeous, you're running along water and have the beauty of Zurich in the backdrop. The church bells and fireworks make for a beautiful sight and sound. There is a part of the run where you run by the biofuel building and the smell of manure is hard to get out of your nose, luckily the fires that the course officials are standing by help singe it out.

This race was pretty fun and I'm glad I did it. Start planning your Zurich winter vacation and jump on the website and register. Check out my race recap here: http://www.gowithjordan.com/?p=743

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(2015)
"Star Power and Pretty simple"
Overall
T-Shirts/SWAG
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Course Scenery
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Elevation Difficulty
Parking/Access
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This is a good way to get up on the weekend and get moving. It follows the basic Chicago 5K plan. The highlight of this was meeting Meb. The overall feeling was pretty fun, but the volunteers try incredibly hard to pump fun into an appetizer for the weekend.

I recommend this race only because it is a good test for weather conditions on Sunday and what else are you going to do? The heat tends to be pretty brutal and there is barely any music and a water station with luke warm Gatorade and water. The corrals for this were a bit confusing, either you were at the front and running elite speed or clumped in with run walkers.

Not a terrible experience, but not worth raving about either.

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(2015)
"Add more rock, add more water"
Overall
T-Shirts/SWAG
Aid Stations
Course Scenery
Expo Quality
Elevation Difficulty
Parking/Access
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The 10K has a random start further down on the course. It is a good alternative if you are too banged up to run the half, but still want to run a race. The shirts are nice, the medal is awesome. The post race party is will give you rock and indie versions of classic songs, but the highlight of this still seems like the Expo.

For this to be a "Rock and Roll" race, there is amazingly very little music. I spent most of the race powering through streets of silence with minimal cheer sections and overly enthusiastic volunteers. In the midst of the scorching Chicago sun, the number of people running made my music app run slow.

For as big a race as this is, the water stations could be more frequent, especially given it is normally run during the hotter part of a Chicago summer. The water stations were poorly regulated, bobbing and weaving through people or being plowed into by people who kicked up the turbo was a fairly common sight.

The race markers are done pretty poorly, but kudos to the City of Chicago workers who help regulate the course. The misting station didn't do much to stop the sweltering heat, but the sponges handed out did. This race is built on an amazing expo and post race party, as far as the race itself, it is serviceable at best.

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(2015)
"Simple race, Amazing after party"
Overall
T-Shirts/SWAG
Aid Stations
Course Scenery
Expo Quality
Elevation Difficulty
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The race follows the same 5K route as most Chicago 5Ks. It's a simple trail combining the park, lakefront and museum campus. There are no frills and while running in you will be going through the crowd of regular tourists, bike tourists and lakefront runners. You will also be treated to the friendly Chicago run supporters. Cheers from volunteers and horns honking from random supporters give a nice pep to a fairly simple race.

Once you finish, be treated to one of the best post run parties. The beer was amazing, the music was exciting and the mix of runners and dead heads brought everyone a little closer.

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(2015)
"A decent family race, but still not worth it"
Overall
T-Shirts/SWAG
Aid Stations
Course Scenery
Expo Quality
Elevation Difficulty
Parking/Access
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This had all the thrills of running through a construction site, with all the scenery of running through a construction site. The race takes place near The Track restaurant which is part of The Meydan hotel. Despite the name and any ideas you might have about actually running on a track, you are pounding the pavement, as you run through part of the hotel's construction.

The race starts on the lower level of a parking garage and swings out through a small garden. In the background is the Dubai skyline and Burj Khalifa, but a lot of it is blocked out by power lines. The rest of the course is construction equipment and materials.

There were more photographers than race officials, it seemed and water stations were pretty sad for a race that takes place when Dubai start's getting hot.

The medals are nothing to rave about, but at least you get one. There are no T-Shirts and the coupon for the Track Restaurant will get wet when you grab your water bottle. There is a race towel that you get also, but for the overall score the swag is pretty sad.

There were a lot of families out running, if you live in the area or are in the country for something else, it might not be a bad way to get an easy run in, but you'd be better off grabbing a bottle of water and running somewhere else in town.

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