Wednesday, April 4, 2007

Dark Corners of a Race Directors Mind sheds some light on 'vetting'

I guess the message that Dave, Jerry and Shawn are trying to get across to all of our Adventure Racing friends is that we all need to do some research about the Race Directors that we race with. Safety and Course planning are key to having a safe and great experience.
In my first blog I tried to share how Kip, Jesscia and I plan out WeCeFAR courses. Today I will take the next step in course planning by shedding light on those Dark Corners of my mind that hold the key to providing a top notch race - VETTING
You might have heard Race Directors say that their course has been vetted which is great however I would like to suggest that you should make sure that the course has been completed by someone that didn't create the course. This is important for several reasons;
  • Accurate time estimates for the course
  • Assure that all of the Control Points are "where" the RD thinks they are with respect to the maps and location.
  • Plan for navigation mistakes
  • Course management during the race - The RD will know if teams are having difficulty in an area, adjust the course if conditions change, modify the course cut offs, etc with confidance
  • Another set of eyes on the instructions.

As I described in the first edition, one of us plans a section, the second one runs that section and colaborates with the designer on modifications and then the third one runs for a time estimate. Once all of the instructions are complete we beg a friend to run our courses for the final test.

I think method has allowed racers to "find" all of our controls while still providing a challenging course.

Come Out and Play

ARFE races next weekend at Planet Adventure in Indiana.

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