This race will always hold a special place in my heart - it was the very FIRST race I ever ran, 4 years ago. The course is flat, downhill at the end by a little bit, and always well staffed. There are plenty of aid stations, great entertainment, and logistically speaking, it is a well-handled race,. The shirts are always a bit "eh" -- but you never know what you're going to get and that's ok. Medals are really nice quality, and the expo is decent as well. I recommend this race - the 10k, the half or the full (Never run the full, never will LOL)... but to anyone who's looking for a BQ course with great scenery in a beautiful part of the country.
Posted on 02.03.18
I've been a long time fan of 131Events races after having done my first a few years ago. They put on virtual races as well as actual races in Phx, AZ as well as Indianapolis (and maybe other cities I'm unaware of) Their medals are always AMAZING. So when my friends asked me to sign up for today's race, I did so without hesitation.
The races from 131 ALL have one flaw here in the phx area - they start too late. People in Indy are ok with a 9am start time, but when you have a very hot Phoenix sun beating down on you, a 9am start time to ANY race could potentially be detrimental to the health and well-being of the runners. The sun is simply too high and too hot by 9am. This is a MAJOR issue I have with the race.
This particular course was over sidewalks and such. It was congested and there were no street closures to make it easier for the runners (maybe too much $$ to get the permits etc?)
The froyo at the end was of course a nice touch - they had toppings that you could choose from, and happy volunteers which are always appreciated.
The shirt was an add-on which I didn't think, for the price I paid to enter, should have been - it should have been included in the swag bag, which included a hat and a very cheap pair of kid-sunglasses, which I threw away.
I'm a fan of 131, like I said - but this isn't a race I will do again and honestly, I'm going to consider more heavily my options next time when signing up. I need earlier start times in Phoenix and better logistics.
Posted on 19.02.18
I had the opportunity to run this race 2 days ago. It is an amazingly gorgeous venue, full of rolling hills (some later than other), the locally famous Davis Dam, as well as beautiful lakes nestled into the mountainsides.
Registration was easy enough - the expo at the Tropicana Hotel was open the day before from 2-8pm which was sufficient, and they were still allowing runners to sign up for all three portions (5k, 10k, half mara).
They were giving away last year's tshirts and finishers medals. There was no "expo" proper - just a computer where you entered your bib number (given from the helper) and then you are directed where to get your shirt and swag bag (3 granola bars, plastic sunglasses).
No race communication except one email with logistics.
Bus picked us up in the morning at 0530. Seemed fair enough. We were driven to start line where we waited inside the school gym which was nice, as it was chilly out.
The race was scheduled to begin 0700. At 0715ish we were told by the announcer that the people barricading the roads were running late (not that they had a year to prepare for this race??) and finally by 0745ish we started.
The course is beautiful - absolutely. It's uphill the first 3 miles, and then downhill for quite a few, then uphill again by the dam.
The first water station - no cups. At the first station.
Rest of stations had cups, thankfully. ONE station had gatorade I believe - and one station had half bananas, all completely hard and green, not suitable for eating, yet given my state of hunger, I chewed pretty hard to eat that thing. It was nasty.
Finished the race and was super excited to get my medal (come on. it's why I do this stuff, I can't lie). No medal. A green slip of paper telling me "we ran out of medals."
YOU RAN OUT OF WHAAAAA? No. They were still accepting registrations the day before. This was not planned well at all.
Post race food included water bottles, beer, and very green hard bananas, as well as tiny bags of potato chips. Not impressed. They did also have tiny bagels.
Not sure if I'd recommend this race beyond the amazing scenery. The town of Laughlin is a disgusting tiny hole in the wall where people smoke everywhere, casinos are the only draw to the town, and the average age is 129 years old. Marijuana is legal there so everywhere you walk you smell it. Is that part good or bad? Up to you. Regardless, laughlin is not a destination city nor will I be back.
Posted on 04.12.17
I had the honor of not only speaking at this race, but of running it the next day. From the pre-race parties to the organization and ease of registration and beyond - this race is by far the BEST managed marathon I've participated in.
The registration process was easy. The communication from the race director and crew was top notch - not over the top, but just enough so that there was no stone left unturned.
On race day - the course was extremely well mapped out, the crowd support was UNPRECEDENTED - and the views of the lake and Canada were beyond impressive.
The after-party included more food than I've ever seen, from beer to bananas, pizza to pop.
The kindness of the people living in the city of Buffalo is also unprecedented. They say in Buffalo you'll never meet a stranger. Totally true. Just loved everything about this race.
Posted on 28.11.17