DROID wrote:I was told by Howard Yeh that the Silver Strand half marathon is DEFINITELY going happen and that skating WILL be included. I went on the http://www.kozenterprises.com and it was easy to find the skating link on their home page to the Silver Strand race.
It is on SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 11th, 2007,.... usual format/course/etc.
As the skaters recall from last year, the finish was a bit strange. First of all, it is a LONG, STRAIGHT road about a half mile long leading to the finish line. The road is very pitted out, with lots of rough pavement, manhole covers,.. etc................ and then the finish chute before the actual finish line narrows the race lanes to allow maybe (???) two skaters side-by-side to get accross the line. THEN, there is an VERY short distance before race volunteers expect you to be completely stopped so they can remove the tear-a-way portion of your race number and get your timing chip. So skaters pile up fast and it is real hard to stop and stay organized, especially on exhausted legs.
PLUS last year, the race director was out on the course at about 50 yards from the finish yelling at EVERYONE to slow down............ so ALL of these factors made the finishing sprint kind of "limp".
Howard had consulted with the "KOZ" people a great deal and they have been fantastic, and the race in all honesty is a REALLY GREAT EVENT in a REALLY GORGEOUS PLACE,.... with a REALLY AWESOME POST RACE PARTY complete with live music, food,... the beach is a few feet away,... and you also get to see the finish of the top wheelchair and amputee runners, and this is truly an amazing event !!!!!
Anyway, I talked to Howard about having somewhat of a secret finish line at about mile # 1o, at the real wide stretch of smooth road just before entering the Naval Radio Station grounds. There is a great stretch of road leading up to this point, and a decent amout of run-off afterwards to allow skaters to sort themselves out before the road narrows for the gated entry to the Navy grounds. We could have a bunch of SKATER VOLUNTERR JUDGES who would really be just like spectators, and we could have a real race at THAT "finish" line, on a wide&smooth segment of road with a good runoff and nobody telling you to slow down as you are attempting to sprint. Well, naturally, Howard was skeptical.
But with the EXCELLENT rapport that Howard enjoys with the race organizers, perhaps this could be an added feature of an already great race if it was "sold" as a PRIME sprint, like they do in cycling AND the way they do it at the criterium races in LA that recently included skating. So among the skaters we would consider this "PRIME" to truly represent the final finish and we would skate the rest of the course as a formality.
Well maybe this is a bit of a stretch,..... but with almost ALL the top skaters travelling far & wide to attend this race,...... I think it would be nice to really be able to have a fianl sprint that means something,.... and that truly decides the winner, without the uncertainty of the final sprint that happened last year.
I will plan to do the race no matter what,.....because I love the entire event,...... but what if we could somehow make it better??????
Howard if you are out there,.... what do you think ?????
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