Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Can't Follow My Own Advice ?

Just hours after adding a post to my blog in which I highlighted the importance of not being negative without a good reason on the internet, I registered for a race and I find myself pretty much unable to resist the urge.

I registered for the Shamrock Duathlon last night. Now I know that I was registering at the last minute- just hours before the registration on Active closed (four days before the race). I was taken aback by the 74.00 price tag- so taken aback I very nearly didn't register. 74.00 ? For a duathlon ? That's nearly 1/6 the cost of an Ironman. It would have been 76.00, because the cost of Active's fees were thoughtfully passed on to us, but I am an Active Advantage member...

I am going to bite my tongue/slap my hand and reduce this rant to specifically about this one race and not the general feeling of being repeatedly gouged by HMF. After agreeing to pay what I consider an excessive fee for the race, I was greeted with a message explaining that the race fees don't begin to cover the cost of putting on the race and asking me to donate more.

I was really, really unhappy.

The ironies here are multiple. First, I'm usually the one arguing that (specifically runners) complain too much about race fees. Second, I can think of at least one person- and maybe everyone reading this- saying 'Vote with your checkbook'. if it's too expensive, just stay away. Don't waste blog space on it.

The problem is, this isn't one of the 5-6 5ks that will be held this weekend. There are only a few duathlons in CT all year, and each year I find myself driving 3-5 hours just to get in a duathlon. Duathlons are like triathlons, minus all the stress and most of the getting my ass kicked by people. You can't shop around, and you can't, well, you almost can't punish the race because of the-whatever- of the people holding the race. I want there to be more duathlons, not fewer.

But at the same time, I have to be honest. This race is really overpriced. And if the race director is losing money charging 73.00 a head, then maybe HMF ought to pass the race off to someone else, move the location, do something. I'm sure HMF could explain how that fee is inadequate or barely adequate or whatever the case may be, charity and all that. I'm involved in a duathlon that donates money to charity and we don't have to charge anywhere near that much. I'm also on the board of a national championship road race that agonizes over every two dollar race fee increase and whose fees are, well, I said I would not go there...

So here's what I have to say- go do Marty Schiavone's You Can Du It Duathlon- 45.00 by May 26th. Register at: That's a shameless plug for Marty. But it's another 45.00 duathlon, like Brian's Beachside Boogie.

Sorry to go negative everyone. But 74.00 ? Ouch !

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Fantastic posting. Many thanks for discussing