Race Planning Timeline
A monthly Committee meeting schedule should
be developed at the first meeting 8 months from race day.
All Committee members to report progress at each meeting
8 Months from Race Day
1. Create a Committee - assign duties, Race
Director (sponsors, publicity, permits, budget, insurance),
Registration Coordinator (forms, publicity, race bibs, pins,
packet prep), Course Marshal (measure, map, mark, cleanup),
Volunteer Coordinator (volunteer acquisition, assign jobs,
training, race day coordination), Awards Coordinator (design,
order, double check amount needed, giveaways, ribbons, raffles,
announcer, ceremony), Food Coordinator (source in-kind sponsorship
of food, pre-race day pickup, race day distribution start
& finish, aid stations, cleanup) Logistics Coordinator
(identify possible conflicts, railroad schedules, road construction
race day, businesses on route conflicts, lead vehicle, follow
vehicle, coordinate during race communications i.e. cell phones,
two way radios).
2. Secure Sponsors; obtain logos for inclusion
in all advertising and on entry forms. On-going... Never stop
looking for sponsors. If needed hire sponsor coordinator and
pay 15% of funds raised.
6 Months from Race Day
1. Confirm the Date, Time, and Budget for your
race. Recommended - Late Registration price increase listed
on the entry that is $2 jump in cost at the 2 week out point
to help get early entries. Then Very Late Registration - day
before race and race day jump of $5 for added incentive to
2. Design the entry form for your race. An Online
entry site should be listed on the entry blank and all website
calendars as well. MRTS can coordinate setup and development
of your online signup. Online entry is essential for increasing
your overall participation and helps make organizing all participants
3. Hire MRTS to provide fast and accurate results
for your race. Dates fill fast and it is always wise to secure
those contractors that are date controlled.
4. Order Bib numbers - here are a couple of
sources for quality, reasonably priced Bibs. This is where
you could have Bibs custom made for your event with your event
name on each Bib, Rainbow Racing, 800-962-1011, Marathon Printing,
800-255-4120 . You can also get free Bibs from, Endurance
Sports 231-744-9138, Gazelle Sports 616-940-9888, Running
Circles 616-850-9300, Runners World, 866-923-RACE. These Bibs
will have their company name (as a sponsor) on the Bib itself
and maybe a running shoe company.
5. Get permission for use of the facilities
where the race will start and end, School, City, County, Park,
or Business. Get approval from community organizations and
law enforcement. Arrange for Police and Medical support for
race day. You may have to pay fees for these services.
6. Arrange for insurance for the event.
7. Start designing and receiving quotes for
your Awards and T-Shirts.
4 Months from Race Day
1. Publish entry form and have available at
all local races prior to your race. Distribute 30-40 entries
to all sports and running shoe stores and gyms and fitness
centers in the area. Check stock at all distribution points
every two weeks until race week.
2. Identify race course. Measure and mark. USATF
course measurement recommended for accuracy. Bicycle computer
not accurate. Car odometer not accurate. GPS close but not
accurate. Contractors wheel not accurate. If you are advertising
a 5K, it should be a 5K. Not a 5K less/more 100 feet or so.
Plus USATF certified courses will yield greater participation.
1.5 months from Race Day
1. Order Awards and T-Shirts
2. Mass mail or mass email of entry to local
1 Month from Race Day
1. Inform TV/Radio/Newspaper sources for inclusion
in their public service announcements.
2. Send Sponsors a get ready letter.
1 Week from Race Day
1. Packet assembly with volunteer meeting. Have
all volunteers come to a meeting at least 3 days prior to
race day to get their t-shirt and to get any information about
their particular job at the race. While there, they can help
in assembly of any packets you would like pre-made for Pre-Registered
and Very Late Registration handout.
2. Coordinate with facility personnel. Check
toilet availability, electricity availability, sprinkler timing
(you don't want the sprinklers to go off on your registration
tables), collect any keys that may be needed.
1. All Committee members present and performing
their assigned tasks.
2. Be at race site at least 1 hour prior to
the start of Very Late Registration. MRTS will be there 1.5
hours before start of Very Late Registration.
3. Inspect facilities - Gates unlocked, toilets
open, supply of toilet paper, electricity available and turned
on. Have cell number of facility manager just in case.
4. Coordinate with MRTS for the Sportag Distribution
for the Registration tables.
5. Volunteers to report to their Committee member
minimum of 30 minutes prior to race.
6. Touch base with Police and Medical personnel.
7. Announce start of race 30, 15, and 10 minutes
prior to race, remind runners that they must turn in their
Sportag after the race at the finish line area, thank all
the sponsors and volunteers for their participation.
8. Call runners to starting line, make pre-race
announcements, traffic or weather announcements, and once
again remind runners that they must turn in their Sportag
after the race at the finish line area.
Ready, Set, Go!!!
Preliminary results will be posted periodically
during the race, any changes or corrections are to handled
now, not during the awards ceremony.
Award ceremony to begin in a timely fashion
for each race. Example: 5K awards can be given during the
10K race. This will allow the 5K participants to get on with
the rest of their day.
Results will be posted at www.macsrts.com within
4 hours following the race. MRTS will supply the Race Director
with HTML files of the results for posting at their website.
MRTS will send results to Race Director for their forwarding
MRTS can email "Personal Results"
to all entrants that provided a valid email address.
Plan wrap up meeting with your Race Committee.
Write down all comments about what went well and what didn't
go well for next years review.
Pay bills in a timely manor. Vendors and contractors
requiring payment appreciate quick payment and will be willing
to respond accordingly for next years race.
Send Thank You letters to all sponsors, both
in-kind and money sponsors.
This "Race Planning Timeline" is a
simple guide only and may not be applicable to all races.
Feel free to use and adjust as needed, to your situation.
Ever hear of Garbage In = Garbage Out? Yep
that definitely can happen for a running event. Excellent
planning for Race Day Registration and Quality Control of
the data given will increase the likelihood that you will
have Great Results, Every Time. Here are a few simple tips:
1. Design a Race Day Entry Form - This is a
special form used only on Race Day. It does not have all the
information your early form has on it. The Late Registration
participants are not going to read it anyway. This entry form
is on a full sheet of paper, only has the registration information
on it. Use large blocks for the runner to fill in rather than
lines. Even the most hurried runner is forced to print each
character in the block thus making it more readable and reducing
any corrections needed later. Have "PLEASE PRINT
LEGIBLY" at the top of the form, and add "Age
and Gender required for Age Group Awards". Finally if
the Quality Control person at the VLR table can't read it,
the data entry person won't be able to read it either. It
is very important to have the Quality Control person edit
2. People Flow - Organize the Very Late Registration
table like check out at the grocery store. One line, single
file to process all Very Late Registrants. This controls the
influx of late registrants and eliminates the congestion and
confusion that happens when they can just walk up to the table
four or five at a time. Ask MRTS for more detailed descriptions
of this process.
3. Label Family Members Bibs - If dad comes
up to register everyone else in the family, be sure to write
the name of the other family members on the bib itself so
that dad won't get confused handing out the bibs to everyone
later. Just like bib numbers go to a certain person, same
with the sport tag. Dad needs to make sure the correct tag
gets to the correct person!
4. Quality Control - All data required and readable
entry form. Already covered that but just thought I would
mention it again.
NOTE TO RACE DIRECTORS
- STARTING IN 2013 I WILL CHARGE THE RACE/RD FOR ANY
MISIING CHIPS AT $10/CHIP. IF YOU GET ANY CHIPS RETURNED TO
YOU AFTER THE RACE, SEND THE CHIP IN AND I'LL REFUND YOU THE