Runner: Vince Kwok
Race Date: 03/19/2022
Location: Deer Park, IL
3 Bests – What aspects of the race did you like the most?
Parking was easy. Plenty of spots as it was in a mall area by the movie theater. I personally like smaller races so this fit me well. Only about 240 half marathoners.
Not so much – Aspects of the race that didn’t do it for you
For the half marathon, it’s 3 loops. Half marathon started at 7:15am. 5K and 10K started at 8:15am. Third time around the loop is when I ran into all the 5K/10K participants. Many of them are there just for fun and so they don’t necessarily know running etiquette. It required a lot of weaving in and out with all the 5K/10K participants. It threw my rhythm off a few times.
Highlights of your race – What did you do well and enjoy about your race in particular?
I paced myself well and had an 8 plus minute PR!
Lessons for others – Share your pro-tips on the race to help the next runner
Be mindful that the course has a number of sharp and narrow turns.
Aesthetics – Is it a pretty course?
Nope, it’s just pavement and roads in a Chicago suburb mall area.
Difficulty – Is it a tough course?
It’s not difficult. Some minor elevation changes.
Organized and well run – Did it feel like a well-oiled machine or were they flying by the seat of their pants?
It seemed fairly organized. Nothing out of the ordinary.
Competition – Is there a strong field?
It’s a smaller race so I don’t think there’s much competition. Winner ran 1:18:41.
Logistics – Does it require a special handshake, registration a year in advance, hotels all booked? Give us the low down on the nuts and bolts of making the race happen.
Logistics were easy. Standard race sign-up.
Aid Stations – Standard fare or anything special to know about the aid stations in terms of what’s available or when?
Standard fare – water and sports drink. There are 2 aid stations and so you hit them each lap.
Weather and typical race conditions
It was 37 degrees F and cloudy. It rained overnight but stopped before the race. Typical weather for Chicago suburbs this time of year.
Gear – Did you need anything special or is there anything you’d recommend for the next runner?
Spectators – Is this a friendly course for your friends?
Yes, this is spectator friendly as it is a 3 loop course. Multiple areas along the route where people can spectate.
How’s the Swag?
Standard – pint glass, medal, t-shirt, and sugar cookie.
The Overall Score – How many stars do you give this race and do you recommend that others run it?
I give it 3/5 stars. Average smaller race. Nothing special. I used it as a tune up race for my marathon in 6 weeks so I thought it was helpful.