Many of your questions should be answered here. Please check before contacting us.
What time does the race begin on Day One and what time does it typically end on Day Two.
Relay races are a bit different than the standard road race. In a relay race, team starts are staggered throughout the day - slower teams (10+ min/mile pace) start first with elite teams (sub 7 min/mile pace) starting hours later. There are several reasons for this. First, it spreads the runners along the course as there are no road closures and runners are running on road shoulders following traffic laws. Second, you can manipulate the number of teams arriving at the exchanges at the same time. Some exchanges have less van parking than others so it's important to try to minimize congestion. And finally, you can control the time teams will finish so that it happens within a narrowing time period (4 - 6 hours rather than 10 - 12 hours). The plan is for the first wave of teams to start between 5:00 and 6:00 AM and the last wave between 11:00 and Noon. Where a team starts is dependent on its average pace. Look at the Start Time Planning chart for the relay you are interested in to get a general idea of what time your team will start.
Is there a mid-race cutoff, where the slowest teams will get weeded out?
Teams need to maintain a minimum of a 10:30 pace in order to arrive before exchanges close. Teams that do not maintain this pace will need to either withdraw from the relay or to drive ahead and skip some legs to get caught back up to the field. This typically starts becoming an issue for some teams about half way through the distance of the course. This is why it is very important that teams accurately enter their times so that teams are given an appropriate start time.
When will starting times and volunteer assignments be made?
Both team starting times and volunteer assignments happen the week after registration closes three weeks before race day. The total number of teams - and volunteers available for the relay - needs to be determined before the final number of volunteers/exchange can be determined. Volunteers will pick their own assignments online in a first come, first served process. Starting times and the online selection of the volunteer's assignment will be announced shortly after registration closes 3 weeks before the date of the relay.
Before I register, do I have to have a complete team?
No, only the Captain's information needs to entered when first registering a team. The rest of your team (runners and volunteers if applicable) can be entered into the online database after registration. Captains have until 3 weeks before the relay date to make additions/changes to their teams. After that date, there is a fee for any additions or changes for runners only.
When entering my team in the database, does my team have to registered in our running order?
No, a list of your team's running order won't be due until registering on race morning.
After registering a team, are the fields (team name, email addresses, 10k time, etc.) editable?
All fields in the online registration are editable by the person who logs in (presumably the captain) except for the team name, the Captain's name, and the volunteer option. If a team wishes to change their team name, Captain, or volunteer option, contact the race director.
Can I have a team of more than 6 but less than 12?
Yes, a "12-person" team can have between 7 - 12 runners. They will be considered a 12-person team category and will be charged the 12-person registration rate.
Who should the relay registration check be made out to?
The check for the relay registration should be made out to Timberline Events LLC. Donations for the non-profit volunteer option need to be made out to Volunteers With A Purpose, Inc.
Several members of my team have asked if the charitable contribution in lieu of volunteers will be tax deductible. And, will I be sending 2 checks, one for the entry fee and one for the contribution?
Yes, the payment for the non-profit volunteers is a separate payment, is a donation, and is tax deductible. This check will need to be made out to Volunteers With A Purpose, Inc. VWAP is a 501(c)(3) organization.
Can the signed waivers be brought to the start?
Yes, waivers can be turned in at the start on race day and that is the preferred method. Waivers will be needed for all people involved with your team: runners, volunteers, and non-running drivers, in order to receive your race packet.
What if there is a catastrophe such as a forest fire before or during the event?
Timberline Events LLC will do everything in its power to hold the relay as advertised, but due to the nature of the event, extenuating circumstances not under the control of the event organizers, may necessitate course changes, or even cancellation, for the safety of the participants. These circumstances include, but are not limited to: weather and other forces of nature, last minute road closures and construction, or forest fires. As the event has already had many expenses that can not be recouped, if any of these events do occur, the event can not be rescheduled for that year, and no refunds, credits, or discounts for future races will be offered.
I read that "signage" is provided, but I was uncertain as to how well the routes are marked. Are they marked well enough that it would be difficult to get lost and off of the path?
Every turn will be marked with signs. Detailed maps with written directions are also available to download and print out. However, we can't be responsible if the wind blows a sign down hard or someone thinks it's funny to remove or change the direction of the signs. It is strongly recommended that each runner study their leg before they start and carry the map for each of their legs as a back up. Signs will also be posted even where there aren't turns on the sections teams will be at night just as a reassurance that they are on the right route. These signs will also be supplemented with flashing blinking lights to make them more apparent. The signage should be used as a supplement to the maps. Maps should be studied before each runner's leg and van drivers should have a navigator looking at the maps as some van routes are different than the runner routes.
The course description of the Wild West Relay states 35% is through national forest, 28% on dirt roads etc. I'm assuming the national forest portion is on paved roads?
No, not all the National Forest section is on paved roads. The section through Routt National Forest is actually US Hwy 40 (very wide shoulders, low traffic) going over Rabbit Ears Pass into Steamboat Springs. The section through Medicine Bow National Forest is also on paved roads, but this is a very isolated and remote area of Wyoming. A great majority of the section through Roosevelt National Forest (west of Ft. Collins) is on dirt roads. In fact, after passing the turnoff to the village of Red Feather Lakes, it's all dirt roads until reaching the Wyoming border.
The rest of the dirt roads are in the rural/farming/ranching areas between the start in Ft. Collins and Livermore (legs 1 through 6), though some of these legs are both paved and dirt.
Will a minivan be able to navigate the Wild West Relay roads to the exchange points?
None of the dirt roads are 4-wheel drive roads. Normal vehicles can easily drive on the dirt roads.
What will be used to mark the paths? Will you be using small power line flags and/or glo-sticks?
The directional arrows on the route are on plywood sandwich boards. There will be directional arrow signs placed at every turn. At night, the arrows on the signs are made with reflective material will be marked with blinking red lights (like bicyclists use). Power line flags and glo-sticks become litter so will not be used.
I know that the night runners are required to have a reflective vest, a flash light, and a red blinking light, but how dark and how alone are most runners?
Our relays travel through rural and isolated areas, so the only section where there will be lighting is through the few small towns the course passes through. We try to schedule the Wild West Relay close to the night of the full moon (depends on the availability of the exchange locations), and the Green Mountain Relay, near the summer solstice.
Unless the team is way ahead or far behind the main pack of teams due to misrepresenting their average 10k pace, runners should not feel particularly isolated.
Has there ever been any concern or issues with animals (wild or domestic) in the middle of the night?
There is always that possibility. If there are concerns about wildlife, the wearing of "bear bells" (essentially jingle bells that you can attach to your shoes or a belt) and carrying pepper spray that attaches to your hip, is suggested. Both would be available at outdoor stores like REI. However, the amount of vehicle traffic, along with all the runners, that travels through these areas is going to be significantly more than normal. Animals would normally avoid this increased activity.