Kudos on the 2010 inaugural event! Congrats to Whitney Franklin and the rest of the Winchester race crew on pulling off a nice rural marathon in southern Tennessee. You may never find warmer southern hospitality at any road race - from the packet pick up team in front of the quaint Oldham Theatre, to the Rotary volunteers serving up pancakes and coffee before the race, to the plethora of local policeman escorting, and cheering for, the runners.
A mere $60 registration fee (if you signd up early) got you a USATF sanctioned event along a beautiful course that starts at the rustic Winchester town square and winds thru Tims Ford Lake and the Cumberland Plateau. Not to mention the very nice technical T-shirt and cool finishers medal. The post-race refreshments were sufficient, with several sit-down dining alternatives around the town square after the finish.
I ran with my ipod, and needed it in the latter stages, because of little spectator support outside the town area. So, if you are looking for the throngs of New York or Chicago, this may not be for you. Nor is it an easy PR course - lots of rolling hills, though none very steep. But, overall a great value and a fun event with southern charm.
My buddy and I along with our wives drove from Nashville to run the half after another larger one in our area had sold out. This was a small race with just over 200 people, but our experience was awesome and we plan to come back next year.
It was well organized and everyone was extremely friendly. The town square has great restaurants and everything is in easy walking distance. This changed the way I view some of the smaller races.
There were only about 25 people doing the 26.2, and I could imagine it getting pretty lonely on the last half without the crowd support of larger races. I highly recommend this for running 13.1, but you should make a weekend of it and enjoy this small town.
Great small town race. I did the full marathon and enjoyed the scenery. Th course had quite a few rolling hills but none were steep. If your looking for a PR race this probably is not the race but having said that I would highly recommend this race for pure enjoyment of running. The water/Gatorade stands were every 2 miles and the volunteers were great. The only thing I would recommend for next year is to have a BIG sign were the full splits from the half to tell which way to go. Me and another runner ended up going the wrong way and had to get someone at the finish line to tell us how to get back to the marathon route. This added an extra 1/2 mile but mentally was a night mare. Overall the race was excellent. Kudos to the whole group at Winchester.
I thought this race was great. My parent's live in the area and it was great being able to run a 1/2 in their neck of the woods.
Packet pick up was great, Mom said. She picked up form on Friday. I live in Nashville and did not want to worry about getting it on the morning of the race. Everyone was very nice to her.
Water/Gatorade stations were great. Would recommend having GU or some other energy supplement between miles 6 and 7.....I really needed it.
Agree the demarcation for the 1/2 and Full should have much more obvious. I did not even see it until I was leaving the race. I ran the 1/2 so did not go the wrong way.
I did set a PR at this race. I used it as a training race for the full in Vegas in December. This was a great course and the weather was perfect! Will do it again next year for sure!!!
This was my first half marathon and i found it to be fantastic. Good support from non runners in the area. Great downtown places to enjoy shopping and eating. The people involved with the race did a fantastic job. The area was very pleasant and i found it to be peaceful. I recommend coming to this one next year and probably will. I think the marking of the race could use a little more work, but for the first ever marathon, they did a great job.
Great race! The support was incredible, the weather was perfect. I ran the marathon and the first half was an awesome course, the second was very pretty countryside with great views of the mountains but it was a little too hilly. Overall it was a wonderful experience, the southern hospitality of Winchester and Franklin Co was top notch. First Marathon Winchester, great Job!!
GREAT race. I did the 1/2 and thought support was excellent, route was well marked and well protected and overall event was very well organized. I hope it is an annual event! The only criticism I have is the publicity. Pre - race advertisement wasn't as widespread or obvious as it might have been, I live in the area but I found out about the race from my daughter who lives in Clarksville, TN almost 3 hours away.
This was my first marathon, and even though it was a tough course, I thoroughly enjoyed myself. I was very impressed with the community support with this being the first event. The square was wonderful, the event was well organized, and the weather gorgeous. Great job to everyone who helped!
I ran the full marathon - 5th marathon overall.
Course: Very hilly - continual rolling hills. The course fell into two pieces in regards to traffic - complete desolation or packed with traffic. On the back half there were mostly no cars, but on the front half and the last 2 miles the traffic was horrible. For those last 2 miles we had the white line to run on with traffic 2 feet away.
Organization: Well organized, with a prompt start, water/Gatorade every 2 miles, and easy packet pick-up. Website and information could be enhanced.
Spectators: As mentioned above, this was the first year, but there were very few spectators on the course. The ratio of those watching the intersections versus those watching the runners was about 10 to 1.
This was my first half marathon and because I managed to register incorrectly as a full marathoner instead of a half it caused me some grief. Somehow on Active.com I checked the wrong one and overpaid $20 as well.
Because I checked the wrong one I received a bib number with black numbers instead of red. Since it was my first marathon I didn't realize this. The issue that came up was that I came close to the square to the finish line and was directed away from it because they thought I was a full marathoner. It took me about 7 minutes of running to realize I was heading away from the square and had to explain it to the volunteers so they would direct me back toward the finish. This miss up added 15 minutes to my time.
Live an learn - right?
Anyways, the course itself was a challenge. The community was great and future marathons in Winchester will only get better.
I hope to run more of them and learn to better prepare to run longer.
This was my 3rd half marathon and everything went smoothly from the packet-pick-up to the finish line. Weather and organizers were great although, I hope to see more spectators at future events.
My only complaints were with the course itself. While I don't mind a challenging course, it would be good not having to endure diesel fumes for a five mile stretch running along side a traffic jam. Parts of the course were very pleasant along winding country roads, but too much of the course involved running with or against traffic on busier streets, and as one person pointed-out, one small section wasn't barricaded
Winchester is all about small town Southern charm and country living. I have to give the residents major Kudos for putting on an event that required so much to benefit so few. There were 150 Half Marathoners and 54 Full Marathoners which meant that there was roughly one volunteer or police office for every runner there!
That is what made this marathon for me. The Volunteers were ultra attentive and the police were great. One motorcycle officer carried my water bottle for me for almost a mile while he gave me my very own police escort. Not bad for a middle of the pack runner like me. They don't call Tennessee the Volunteer state for nothing.
I would have liked to have seen the start time moved up an hour to 7AM for the Full Marathon since it was pretty toasty by noon when I finished and there was virtually no shade to shield you from the sun. The route was mostly rural with a some city stretches and traffic was sometimes an issue. Still, the police were out in force and the locals were, for the most part, gracious. I did enjoy the hassle free packet pickup, easy parking and surprisingly good organization. Getting some more types of food and some entertainment at the finish would be nice but might be too much to ask of a race this size.
A nice finisher's medal but the whole and the half medals could have been a little more distinctive from one another. Also I would have liked to see the words "Inaugural" or "First" on the medal but I am a medal snob and probably most people don't care about such small details.
Overall a good run made even better by the warm hearted an enthusiastic volunteers.I have run a lot of marathons but none can top this one in terms of friendly people dedicated to being gracious and attentive hosts. Many thanks to the people and police of Winchester.
Great run for a first event for Winchester. We ran the half and took our time to enjoy the area. The big runs are fun but you can't beat a nice jog in the country. Thanks to all the volunteers.