We should put on a race, I texted Mat.
Ok, he said. What should I do?
- – Got a tattoo artist named Dave (@artoscience) to paint a poster ($12 for beer)
- – Made 100 copies at Monk’s ($67)
- – Wrote a letter requesting sponsorship
- – Distributed the posters around town
- – Asked a bunch of places for sponsorship, and got 5 to say yes.
- – Got a band booked to play on the night of
- – Plotted a race route (google map?)
- – Drove the race route
- – Pressured all my friends, then, when I ran out of friends, my family, to man checkpoints
- – Found another band, when the first one wimped out. (Downtown Mischeif ($100)
- – Did a bunch of social media crap
- – Bought a keg ($180)
- – Rented a sound system ($89)
- – Bought snacks and glow sticks for everyone ($40)
- – Printed up the checkpoint instructions ($20)
And then we just waited for people to show up on the night of, and it worked out ok.
I was expecting a flaming disaster right up until people started to shop at like 7:29, but they did show, and they raced and everything.
Mat and I planned a 3 hour racecourse, but I guess I dramatically underestimated how quick people can go. Aside from about half the peloton dropping out at the last checkpoint (the steepest hill I could find, it was), every rider was done by 9:40, barely two hours after the starting horn. This was a problem for me…
The second-last checkpoint was supposed to be Nick’s, who is in a wheelchair and requires a drop off. So I was planning to start the race, then zip him up to Uvic, then spend the next three hours spectating.
Instead, we wasted 15 minutes while Aaron (the finish line supervisor) went to Tim Ho’s for his coffee and donut, a further 15 minutes while I picked up Mat from the first checkpoint (he was done his job in like 5 minutes and fully could have made his own way back to the shop, but oh well) and 20 more while a police officer issued me a warning for making a dangerous U turn after picking up Mat.
After I said “Thank you very much and have a nice night” to the officer, we proceeded (at the speed limit and with great respect for stop signs) to Uvic, where three speed heroes were track-standing at the checkpoint and looking impatient and sweaty in their matching spandex. We sent them on their way, then a couple more guys, then we left Nick to handle it while Mat and I went to hover near a charging station and answered text messages from all my volunteers, who were wondering if the race was over or not. “Pretty much”, I told them. “Go on back to the party.”
“I have a puker,” Corrie said. “Well, tell her to text me now if she wants a pickup, cause I’ve got two minutes of power here.”
Carli was too late. She had to make her own pukey way back to the shop. I hope I made it up to her, though – she got a special prize. The Puker Prize.
The race was over by that point, so we sprinted back to the shop to party it up and pay the band.
It all worked out surprisingly well, and everyone seemed keen to go again. If I figure out a way to make money doing this, we probably will.
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