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Running news

10 July 2020, 9am

Denver organisers produce help for distance races

Return to racing: guidelines offered

Creigh and andrea

After three months of collaboration within the running industry and with Colorado’s governmental bodies Andrea Dowdy and Creigh Kelley, the CEO and race director of Denver’s Colfax Marathon, have devised guidelines for resuming endurance events within the state – but they hope the guidelines can be useful for event professionals across the USA and beyond.

Access the document here .

“We absolutely want people to be able to use this [document], which is why we’re sharing it widely. It would mean a lot to us if people don’t have to reinvent the wheel,” said Kelley, who has produced over 1000 events during his career and was a founder and past board member of Running USA.

“We designed these guidelines thinking of the large events on down to the tiny,” said Dowdy. “If we could do this well, and make it scalable, that was hugely important to us.”

Some key findings in generating the guidelines were:

i) Leading figures in the running industry should make every effort to volunteer to lead the discussion (with government) on running and walking events. Because if they don’t, somebody else will try to figure it out and it won’t be good.

ii) include a social contract with participants to be signed off upon registration and re-verified when picking up race bibs. The contract would ask the runner to certify that they will wear a mask (except when actually running in the event), are healthy, will bring a personal hydration source, will not invite spectators, will social distance at the race, and a any other key considerations.

iii) Approach this in a way that would make sense for the event but also in a way that would make sense to a runner. They need to understand why it’s important to bring their own water bottle and have variable staggered start times. The social contract puts the onus on all players to contribute to a positive experience.

They expect that the first Colorado event to use the guidelines will take place in August, with more moving forward in the autumn.


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