Latest reviews by William Brent
The good: Scenery
I was really surprised with how many churches Montreal had. The crowds were pretty great too; especially going through the barracks!
The bad: the half marathon course hits all the highlights of the city. The marathon is a little boring.
Registration: is through active.com so its pretty straight forward.
It was super easy to register and add things like extra races or heavy metal bling.
Communication: RnR does a good job of communicating in general; BUT I wish they would have told us SOMEWHERE they were providing a bus pass for runners. This was super cool of them; but it would have made my travel arrangements so much easier! I was elated and thankful to hear we were getting transit passes but at the same time; we found out the week before the race.
The expo: weak.
'Nuff said. I compare RnR expos to one another and of all the RnR races I've done DC takes the cake; with Virginia Beach being a close second.
The title sponsor had a booth (of course) and there were two hair straighteners. 1 gear booth and three tens machine booths.
Maybe 2 others. No music or hype.
I am spoiled because other RnR races have music every mile. It's not always a live band, but its something. I think it was every 5 or so in Montreal. Some of them were giving it their all; some I think were there because they had to be... at least that was the feel. The girl at 8 / 12 was great.
I loved rolling through the streets and seeing the churches. The city is so clean and the people are super supportive.
Going through the Olympic Stadium was cool!
It's massive; and I think that's inspiring.
I think if we could have gone through the park (garden) after the stadium that would have made the marathon course better. As it stands; the half marathon got all the sights and the marathon got lots of... well road.
Additionally; it was really difficult to find a support tent or first aid.
I did see a few but they were not easy to find.
The swag: the shirt was okay; I mean I remember when RnR have out jackets... but it's a different time now. The medal; however, was pretty neat. I am happy to add this to my collection!
Post race party.
I think there were more vendors or tents at the post race party than there were at the expo.
The post race party was really something; they had a giant slide for the kids!
I only within could have stayed to enjoy it. Sadly the race started an hour later than planned. In addition to that messing up my fueling strategy I had to run to check out of the hotel.
All in all; RnR puts on a good race. This one, IMO; is a great half; but i doubt I'll do the full again.
1st. I am going back for the marathon
That should say something....
Pros: expertly executed. Amazing scenery
Cons: not "participation" medal.
I went into this race knowing the elevation was going to murder me. I am a low-lander and this race starts at nearly 7000 feet....
It was amazing. No humidity; 50-something degrees. I know why people flock to colorado!
Registration: really simple and really reasonable. Its administrated through bike registration so, it has a familiar look and feel to other medium sized races.
The ability to find race related information could be better; but it is there.
What's even nicer; I had signed up for the marathon but during packet pick up they allowed me to drop to the half.
Communication leading up to the event. Unlike other races there is little communication leading up the the event. The notices they send are accurate and helpful; but you will be waiting for them.
All the way.
But; the hills are alive with the sound of music
It was really well marked also; typically I get lost while running and I survived!
On course support
Surprised thay the was a many aid stations as there were! Filed to the brim with waffles and nuun.
The expo is a simple packet pick up; but it happens at the same time as the bike race so the vendors which are there for bike race are also the for the runners packet pickup.
The tshirt is pretty standard (I think the 2013 shirt is nicer material)
They give out a honey Stinger grahm cracker
There is no medal. I'm actually okay with that. I have enough medals.
There is a band and beer and lunch and a few vendors. It really friendly and community feeling.
I really liked it; maybe more than one of those finish festivals with a headliner concert!
In short: do this race. With or without elevation acclimating (but if you can spare the 18 days to acclimate... steamboat springs is gorgeous)
The Good: There's a lot of good; but I would say the water was clean. BIG DEAL for me.
The Bad: I did the double down (both a Saturday and Sunday Race) but the race medals were the same and I didn't get a cool medal for doing both.
This is a great triathlon regardless of whether you are a first time triathlete or a tried and true athlete. Everyone is super helpful and informative. There is a lot of communication leading up tot he race.
Registration is through Active.com so if you have signed up for any races in the last 5 years, you are bound to have used active. BUT if not, Active.com is easy to navigate and saves your information.
NJSTRI's website is easy to navigate also. All the information you will need be it race day or leading up to race day is on the website and easy to find.
Results are easily identifiable for the current year as well (you do need to dig a little to find previous year's results)
Communication from the RD:
there was a lot of it, mostly advertising.
but the important stuff got through and I feel the did a good job.
What you would expect from a small town race (only this is a big deal.) There were a few vendors; nothing to write home about.
If you followed my 2019 race journey (or just the reviews) I haven't had the time or ability to attend race expos, so I was really looking forward to it this time; but I felt somewhat let down. A few discount vendors and a bunch of NJST gear...
The best part of the expo was being able to see the course and the transition area and the speech form the race director.
The water is clean!
I don't know what mob boss was paid off to pull the bodies out of the water, but they did it.
I was really happy that the water wasn't slimy or grodie.
I've been in water which was really gross (Louisville) but you actually feel pretty refreshed after going in (despite the water temps being 88.)
New Jersey isn't known for its rolling hills. Which should tell you that this course is going to be pretty flat. That being said; riding your bike competitively with no undulation is hard.
The course was closed from traffic which was really nice! No cars to honk or get in your way!
The run was the run...this is bibrave its what we do! The course was the walking path through the park. Thankfully there was shade through most of it. The race staff set up a 'misting station' which was clutch in this heat. I would have liked to have seen water at the turn around, but that may me being nit picky...
From a run course perspective; it was okay
From a participant perspective; if you're going to walk, walk on the grass not the path where we are racing.
They are know for their swag, but it was okay. nothing to write home about. Sorry
It was a nice medal, but I don't need 2 of the same medal. In my opinion the Olympic should have been different than the sprint...just saying
with amazing efficiency they get the athletes through the food area quickly.
There are pretzels and bagels and beer. I feel that was really a good set up
There was also an amazing misting booth after the finish line. I'm actually going to call it a shower (even though it's not a shower proper)
It was a great addition to the race especially after the scorching heat you experienced on course!
I'd do it again
The good: gorgeous scenery
The bad: felt like the first time they had the race.
Ease of signing up.
Runsign up. All my info autofills easy peasy
Holy Over Communication batman. I get it. I really do. You dont want anyone to miss anything. But for real I received a dozen email in the 2 weeks leading up to the race.
The other thing; the updates were not "organized"
I felt the communication was overwhelming
Low key. Like low.
It's cool though. It was really just a bib pick up
1st ; parking was 20 minutes from the start.
HUGE kudos for the shuttle buses. That was the highlight. Good job RD.
The course was flat and along the water. I could see a bald eagle chilling in the trees
The aid stations were volunteers handing out water but they had the water / Gatorade staggered in an odd way.
Plenty of water. Good call rd
Not enough restrooms.
It was neat it was an oil lamp.
The AG awards were neat too!
Trophies for the overall winners; pint glasses for the AG placers.
The good: This was a cute home town race.
The bad: There were definitely some hills to push over!
Expo: in true 2019 fashion; I didnt go. There was an option to pick up my packet at the race so that's what I did.
Race communication: i dont recall a whole lot of communication; but I do remember the email about parking... so it was good?
Parking was fantastic. They reserve a field and bus you to the begining.
It's a great course. Not 100% closed; but I guess that's okay. The only thing is the community support which was nice also served lemonade at mile 9 which was a bit hard to swallow.
The course is hilly. Especially in the beginning.
But there are amish families walking to church and mountains and lakes. So beautiful
Swag and finish medal. It was a neat medal. It doubles as a bottle opener;)
I would totally do this again and encourage you to do it to