Ray O’Connor, RunIreland Founder offers his top tips to ensure your event is a success. Ray is Race Director of Run Galway Bay, Portumna Marathon and Connemara 100. He is also event director of Tough Mudder Ireland and the Irish Cancer Society Colour Dash Events.
- Run the proposed route several times yourself and preferably in bad weather! Honestly, it is the only way to truly understand the potential problems that you might have to face on race day.
- Get the route officially measured and mark the course early.
- Apply for an AAI permit and get insurance.
- Talk to the Local Council, Gardaí and Emergency Response Units in the area – use their experience knowledge and advice to put your safety and emergency plan together. (Check that there are no roadworks planned on the route on the date in question – it has happened!)
- Get a core team of leaders together with specific responsibility for groups of volunteers.
- Don’t depend solely on unpaid volunteers – make a donation to a club in return for volunteers this way you are guaranteed bodies when you want them and where you need them, you are also supporting other groups in your community.
- Make sure your timing company are reliable and results can be issued quickly after the race.
- Order your race numbers, medals, finishers tee shirts, safety pins well in advance.
- Registration should be hassle free – ensure you have enough people helping out and try to expect the unexpected on race morning
- Get a good nights sleep the night before and above all stay calm – everyone will be looking to you for inspiration and direction so give it to them in bundles.