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Inline Planet Skate Forum • View topic - SILVER STRAND HALF MARATHON

SILVER STRAND HALF MARATHON

Interplanetary space for discussions of inline skating

SILVER STRAND HALF MARATHON

Postby DROID on Wed Jul 18, 2007 8:18 pm

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 ?????

DROID
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Postby zoraster on Wed Jul 18, 2007 11:47 pm

I love this race and personally would hate for it to change and make it shorter. The course already feels short considering how flat and fast it is. The only change I wish we could make would be to make it longer.

I agree that the last stretch isn't the best skating surface and the finish line could use some work. At least last year, there wasn't a carpet like the year before at the end. With the carpet, you would practically fall flat on your face at the finish line. That was by far worse than a narrow shoot. I think they just need to have one finish line, instead of two to make things clearer. It definitely was silly that someone was yelling to slow down. I mean come on, it is a race.

The thing that I like about the end though despite the rough payment is watching all the people begin their sprints too soon right as the make the final left turn. Then they blow up at the end. It definitely makes for a strategic ending. People do it every year.

Last year I was a part of the main chase group behind the leaders or what I prefer to call the Advanced group. I got into position coming out of the naval base in 2nd place. Just where I wanted to be. Then as we rounded the corner for the final stretch 2 skaters passed me and the skater in front of me and took off. I knew exactly what was going to happen to them. Well sure enough about 1/4 mile later, I caught them and the guy in front. I then began my sprint and took the lead of my group and sprinted to the finish. Granted I consider myself I sprinter, so this is the part that I love.

Believe me if we can skate the really rough payment on the base, we can easily skate the rough pavement at the end. Considering how nice and smooth the rest of the course is a few bumps here and there are fine with me.


Scott
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Re: SILVER STRAND HALF MARATHON

Postby inlinesk8race on Thu Jul 19, 2007 3:20 pm

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 ?????

DROID


100% agree. Great idea, I like it.

There was some rumors about changing the course this year to marathon distance by doing a loop back up the Silver Strand and then finishing on the road before the neighborhood. That evidently isn't going to happen, however your suggestion would be a definite improvement. I always felt that the final 2 miles of this race were too narrow and unfair but importantly unsafe especially exiting the base at 25+MPH trying to negotiate a 90 degree turn through the metal guard gates.

It is a nice event that hopefully will evolve into an event that skaters just couldn't resist attending.

Steve
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Silver Strand

Postby spdsk8a on Sun Jul 22, 2007 7:50 pm

I agree, this would be a much better race if we had an earlier finish. It is hard to have a sprint for the finish, when you have officials and volenteers screaming at you to stop.
WINNERS NEVER QUIT, QUITTERS NEVER WIN..
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Postby abo on Mon Jul 23, 2007 5:02 am

i've done silverstrand three years now. the first two i skated with the lead group until around the NRRF gate exit. last year i got dropped entering the NRRF. but, the race is great and is now nearly the most well attended inline half-marathon in the country. the organizers will surely balk at changing the race length for inliners unless they offer the chg for runners, wheelchairs, etc., as well. remember, these running races that we inliners are fortunate enough to piggy-back onto don't need us. so, we should be careful not to get too pushy to have our needs met. that said, safety s/b #1 and the finish situation needs work. some small accommodation for the first dozen or so finishers is all that's needed. the remaining finishers are gassed and moving much more slowly. the 2/10 of gatorback at the NRRF turnaround could be omitted without breaking any hearts. and if someone knows someone in the "needle beach" public works department - an overlay of asphalt slurry would make for a nice finish sprint surface regardless of the manhole covers.(and relatively inexpensive)

otherwise, the event is growing(defying the trend of other inline events across the nation) if incremental, positive change can be achieved without ruffling feathers, that's a win-win.

*there are full distance inline marathons all over the place(see the inline planet event calendar) - no need to convert an otherwise well run event into a future question mark.......what do i mean?......if you offer both options(a half and a full) you will surely split the field and reduce the overall number of participants in each particular event. the result: a potential loss of momentum for the original event, added cost to the organizers to staff two finish lines, added cost for add'l awards, safety issues(skating back through oncoming runners, water stations, etc......

this race has momentum. let's keep pimping it. let's get the skater participation numbers high enough to generate a stronger voice to address the 'other'(not the race distance) issues.
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Postby sxevegan on Mon Jul 23, 2007 2:47 pm

This was my favorite race last year. unfortunately I will be doing the Silverman iron distance tri in Henderson NV that same weekend this year:(

I think it would be nice to make it a full marathon distance. I've talked to a lot of people who said they won't travel to a half marathon just because it's not worth spending hundreds of dollars on a 30 minute race.

On some courses i think prime laps are a great idea. I wish more races should do that. Chicagoland would be a perfect race to have prime laps and I was planning on suggesting it to the RD. I'm not sure that Silverstand is the best course to incorperate primes, but it could work.

The finish line does kind of suck at that race. Is there a reason that the RD won't just widen the finish chute?
Rob Bell
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Postby The Major on Mon Jul 23, 2007 5:24 pm

Rob,

We'll try to do that next year. You should head up to Hayward where there's prizes for hill sprints in a 39 mile race. Now that I think about it, the way you raced Saturday, why don't you just stay home.
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Postby sxevegan on Mon Jul 23, 2007 6:26 pm

If it was closer or airfair was cheaper I'd be there! Thanks for the nice words. I think i was just in the right place at the right time. Hopefully I have the same kind of luck at St Paul and Duluth.
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Postby DROID on Mon Jul 23, 2007 9:46 pm

I'm getting the idea from this discussion that EVERYONE thinks the Silver Strand finish,............... SUCKS.

In my original post I had two main purposes.

1) Inform everyone that this GREAT event will be held again this year on November 11 th. THIS REALLY IS A GREAT EVENT !!!!

2) Suggest ONE possible alternative for the "finish"........... my idea was to have a "secret" finish line mainly for the leaders so that the top 3 overall finishers (male/female) can really hammer out a killer sprint. This could be done without too much difficulty,..... assuming we could have a few people to watch that finish, which could be a bit before the gate entry to the Navy Radio Base. The skaters would then continue to skate to the REAL finish line.

So that secret finish line would be sort-of like a PRIME sprint,.... even though I agree that PRIME's are much more effective on a criterium type course, like LA/Dominguez Hills, NYC 100Km,... etc..

Awards at the Silver Strand would be given based on the the REAL FINISH,......not the secret finish.

The only thing to be won at that secret finish would be bragging rights.

???
???
???

ANY OTHER IDEAS ???????????

??? I guess we could just deal with the current finish line set-up,.... ??? who knows,.... the road surface may get worse with each passing year.

I also agree that a full marathon would attract many more skaters. Even though San Diego is a FANTASTIC city to visit,...... it is a considerable expense for a short race,.... especially after the entire season of travelling and racing.

If the course started at the same place and we did a turn-a-round somewhere in Imperial Beach and then headed back up the Silver Strand all the way to the starting line,....... this would be a great race,... and I think that finish sprint would be much better. That hill would be quite a factor just before the flat run-in to the line.

DROID
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Great Idea on Silverstrand

Postby maroonloon on Tue Jul 24, 2007 5:50 am

This is probably my second favorite race of all time, (behind Duluth). The scenery is unbelievable, the weather is perfect and predictable and the people are incredibly nice.

Where else can you race with the ocean on one side and the bay on the other? The road is perfect leading up to the base.

After you enter the base there are 2 problems that I see. First its basically a bike path you are skating on. So if you want to pass and you are in the front pack after the rough spot turnaround, there is not enough room to get around someone and the there are other skaters coming at you. 3 people wide on a 5 foot path is a bit tough.

Second, the ending has no roll out so two years ago when I did it they were yelling to slow down and then as soon as you crossed the finish line going close to 30mph, they want you to stop within 20 feet, not easy to do after 40 minutes of skating. Actually it makes no sense at all.

I totally understand we piggy back to a running race however, Andy, you have a great idea. I think a sprint finish would be alot of fun where you could actually go all out and have a strategy before the finish. Either way, I plan on being there but the older I get the less interested I am in getting hurt in a way that is totally avoidable. If this is a nice tour skate at 15mph is one thing but if you are truly racing, then its goofy to have to slow down 100 yards before the finish....

I just want to reiterate, this is such a beautiful course and place in America that if you can figure out how to get there, I strongly suggest doing this race.

On a side note, recently I stayed at the Marriot downtown in San Diego. I was able to go right outside the hotel and get on a boat for about $5.00 to Coronado Island. I then skated right from the Marriot there down the bike path along the same route of the race. It is a great skate just fyi.

Jay
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