Race Directors Check List

 Race Directors Checklist


Pre-Race Preparation

  1. If a parade permit is required, get it at least 60 - 90 days prior to race. (Birmingham Traffic Department at 254-2450) Otherwise get permission from your local Chief of Police. If your course is flat and fast there is a chance you will have "Wheel Chair" racers and you will need to advise the police accordingly. The Birmingham police will not allow wheel chairs unless it is noted on the Parade Permit. They need additional officers to monitor the chairs since they need to start a few minutes before the runners (2 minutes or 2 to 3 blocks - just enough to allow runners to "spread out" enough to pass chairs safely)

  2. Train all workers, Registration, Finish, Timers, and Results.

  3. Order adequate number and sizing of T-shirts well in advance. Size Distribution: 17% small, 30% medium, 29% large, 25% x-large and 2% xx-large. T-shirt design with sponsors logos on the back of the T-shirt.

  4. Trophies or awards need to be ordered in advance and available race day.

  5. Race entry forms should be out at least 60 days prior to race day.

  6. Publicity, entry forms to all running stores, YMCA's, colleges, and sports complexes. Entry forms in the Birmingham Track Club newsletter (full page ad @ $100.00) and on newsletter calendar (contact Rick Melanson).

  7. Order race numbers and safety pins in advance or race date.

  8. Get bags for race packet pickup - usually supplied by a sponsor.

  9. Create a check list of things needed for the race.

  10. Get your volunteers early. Needed for: registration, start, finish, course turns, aid stations on course, equipment setup, mile markers out on course and aid station set up on course, start finish and start area, awards, cleanup.

  11. Complete information on Registration form:

    • Date / time/s of race

    • Date / time /location for early packet pickup, and race day packet pickup

    • Contact name, phone number and e-mail address (also a check box to indicate if they want to receive the electronic newsletter)

    • Sponsors logos

    • Location of start and finish

    • Age division and awards (Age groups should be 0-14 or 0-19 and then 20-24, 25-29, 30-34, 35-39, etc up to 60-up or 70-up or 0-19, 20-29, 30-39, 40-49, etc. depending on your budget. The 1st example is referred to as "5 yr. age groups" and the 2nd example is referred to as "10 yr. age groups")

    • Entry fee/s Pre-register, and race day

    • Mail in Entry: name, address, email, deadline and where to send

    • Location of aid stations

    • Mile splits to be called (not necessary if you have "large" mile markers on course)

    • Facilities - dressing, showers, rest rooms, port-a-lets

    • Time and place of awards (time approximate)

    • Course map (This can also be placed on the BTC Web page)

    • Instructions for results to be available

    • Awards ceremony

  12. In Packets:

    • Pins and numbers, if used

    • Map, of course

    • Information sheet (see 8c)

    • Tshirts

    • Any goodies that a sponsor wish to provide

  13. Pre-Race Day:

    • Mark the course well with start, finish, mile markers and all turns

    • Call the police to remind them of the race date and time

    • Order Port-a-lets for delivery for Friday or day before

    • Get coolers, cups, sports drink, new water hose, know where you will get water race day for start, finish and aid stations, have the ability to re-fill coolers if necessary

    • Get tables for registration, aid stations, awards, etc.

    • Secure a Race doctor or paramedic in advance of race

    • Get cash for day of registration and cash box

    • Get pens/pencils for registration

    • List of pre-registers runners for registration table

    • Blank entry forms for registration

    • Trash bags for start/finish and aid stations

    • Minor medical: Band-Aids, Advil, etc.

    • Secure getting apples, oranges, bananas, bagels, cookies, etc for post-race food.

  14. Registration - Early entry:

    • Allow to pick up packets before race day - this needs to be planned out

    • Provide bags for packet pickup

    • Cut off online registration before early packet pickup, have updated registration list available.

  15. Registration - Race day:

    • Get tables on course for start/finish/aid stations

    • Table for registration (separate table for form fill-out and for paying)

    • Pre-registration

    • Form fill out

    • Late registration

    • Tshirts

    • Bags for tshirt, and other stuff

    • Update registration list

    • Clearly marked signs for lines

    • Sufficient trained personnel

    • Pencils,pens

    • Pins, if race numbers are to be worn

    • Information sheet

    • All as in (6) above

    • Rules for wearing race numbers (front)

    • Previously best times if previously run

    • Previous year's no., entries, finishers

    • Weather conditions expected

    • Instructions for finish (chutes, cards, etc)

    • Statement of courtesy (fast runners to front, stay to left, etc.)

    • How results will be made available.

Race Day

  1. Start

    • Start at appointed time - THIS IS A MUST!

    • Prominently marked starting line

    • Portable PA system if large race

    • Use starting gun so all can know exact start

    • If larger race, ask participants to line up by expected finish time

  2. Course

    • Clearly marked with signs and workers

    • Police protection guaranteed in advance - remind police early on day of race

    • Accurately measure course - preferable with "Jones counter" (available for loan from BTC - contact Rick Melanson)

    • Course profile if Marathon

    • Monitors at each turn OR Large turn arrows so all can see

    • Lead vehicle to clear course (optional)

    • Follow-up vehicle behind last runner

  3. Splits of Mile Signs

    • Vehicle to carry out and pick up timers

    • 10K: 1, 3, and 5 miles minimum

    • Marathon: 1. 3. 10, 13.1, 15, 20, and 25 mile minimum

    • If timers are used, make sure they are trained in calling out times clear and loud and make sure accurate reliable stop watches are used

  4. Aid Stations

    • Tables, coolers, cups, new water hose, sports drink and water. Know where you will get your water for each location and have the ability to refill.

    • Trash bags, clean up crew

    • Transporation to and from for workers and equipment

    • Well staffed

    • Well supplied

    • 10K - 4 mile point or 3.1 mile and at finish

    • Marahon - not less than 5 stations plus finish

    • Other - not less than 3 stations plus finish

    • Hot races - especially well supplied including a station at the start and 'sponges' if possible

    • Clean up crew

  5. Medical

    • Paramedic or doctor on course - only required onMarathon

    • Paramedic or doctor at finish - Required

  6. Finish

    • Tables for coolers, cups, new water hose, water, sports drink.

    • Prominently marked

    • Workers to keep finish area clear of spectators

    • Worker to assist runners through chutes

    • Sufficient chutes to avoid congestion - one (1) chute can handle 300 runners, any more than 300 should plan on using "multiple" chutes

    • Electronic timing if available

    • Manual recording by trained workers (back-up)

    • Workers to hand out cards (2 minimum) or collecting "tear off" numbers

    • Numbered cards with blanks for required information (i.e. name, age, and sex)

    • Workers to keep finishers in line and direct to aid station and results table

    • Portable PA system (Bullhorn is OK)

    • Cots and blankets for Marathon

  7. Post-race Food

    • Get tables for post race food

    • Food can be provided by a store as a sponsor. Ex: bagels, oranges, apples, bananas, cookies, donuts, water, sports drink, etc.

  8. Results Table

    • Table for people to fill out cards (if used)

    • Plenty of pencils, pens

    • Sufficient trained workers to assist with cards

    • Separate table with finish "boxes" for "fille out" cards (boxes can be borrowed from BTC)

    • Trained workers to list top finishers

  9. Results

    • Complete results available within reasonable time

    • Send age group results to Rick Melanson so that he can send to "Birmingham News" and "Running Journal". They must be in Word or Excel format.

  10. Awards

    • Ceremony start on time

    • Results double checked before ceremony begins

    • Announcer and presenter prepared

    • Consider other trophies: medals, patches, ribbons, visors or ball caps

  11. Other

    • Workers designated by vests, tshirts, arm bands.

Packet Pick-Up at retail partner store or other location

If you have made arrangements with a partner location to have packet pick-up here are some suggestions.

  1. You will need to provide volunteers to handle the race packet pickup.

  2. You need to provide the race packet bags, race numbers and safety pins

  3. Make sure that there is a race information sheet for the runners, to include:

    • What: name of race, distance of race(s)

    • Contact information: Name of contact for questions, phone number, email address

    • When: Date & time of race

    • How: race entry fee and deadline for mailing, address to mail entry fee, awards breakout

    • Where: race location, directions to race location, early packet pickup location along with date and time for early packet pickup. Race day packet pickup location and time, awards ceremony location and time.

  4. Make sure the partner location has your phone numbers to contact you if there are any questions.

  5. If there is any material other than race numbers and t-shirts that need to go in the bag, please put these in the bags prior to carrying to the TRAK SHAK

  6. Make sure that you provide an updated pre-registration list every day that you have packet pick-up.

  7. Make sure and stop active.com online registration 2 days before the race day

  8. Make sure that you give the your partner change to use for cash registration. The store needs their change for regular business.

For more information, check out the RUNNING USA "Tips For Race Directors"