Best Damn Race, Safety Harbor, Florida: Feb. 1, 2014 {recap}

So, I may have complained a time or 50 that I’m struggling with running right now (well, and the last four months). Going into the Best Damn Race on Feb. 1, I was just hoping to not be miserable running the 10K.

I went into it with some confidence because my last run (on Thursday) before the race (on Saturday) rocked. I ran 4 solid, nonstop miles. And, I felt like I could have run 4 more. It was just a fun run in a beautiful place chatting with a running pal, and it was just how it should be (and how it used be).

I hoped maybe just maybe it could carry over into Saturday.

And … it kind of did. But, it kind of didn’t.

I don’t need to share a recap of my race. There was nothing spectacular or absolutely horrible about it. I came, I ran. It wasn’t my best 10K, but it wasn’t my worse. And, at this point in my running career, I consider this a huge victory.

My time: 1:15:35. My time last year at this race when I was “taking it easy:” 1:13:16.

Yes, it’s frustrating, but that’s what it is right now. I just need to get out of this funk.

Since this was my second year running this race, I obviously like it. Why?

  • It’s in a beautiful location. The race is set along Tampa Bay in Safety Harbor. The course has beautiful views throughout.
  • It’s just a fun race. It’s a fun atmosphere.
  • I always know lots of people running this race, and it’s great to see so many friends.
    group 2013


    group 2014


  • The medals rock! (It’s a bottle opener.)
  • Parking is easy (I’ve run the 10K both years, which is the first race, so this could be why. But, I never heard complaints about parking).

I knew there were a few issues this year. What?

  • They didn’t have shirts available for the first day of packet pickup.
  • The 10K was delayed by about 20 minutes. This delayed the other races (half marathon and 5K).
  • They ran out of 10K medals.
  • The beer line got pretty long.
  • They ran low/short on food.

Did these issues bother me?

  • It was a little inconvenient to pick up my shirt on race day (and the line was a little long), but I got the size I needed in a somewhat reasonable time.
  • Yes, the race was delayed. This didn’t really bother me, and I realize it can be out of the race director’s hands. A little irritating, but not the end of the world to me.
  • I got a 10K medal, so this didn’t affect me, but I can understand being upset to not have something to show for your efforts.
  • I wait for beer.
  • The food issue didn’t affect me, but it would be irritating.

I think anyone affected by these issues would appreciate the race director’s response. Why?

  • He came out and admitted the issues quickly after the race. Just admitting wrong and not passing the blame or pretending like it didn’t happen is a huge deal to me.
  • In an email sent out a few days after the race, he apologized and noted his efforts to remedy the situations (sending medals to the 10Kers, finding a different shirt vendor, looking at a new beer setup, evaluating the food situation).

Will I continue to run this race? Yes! It’s a favorite local race of mine. Maybe even the best damn one.

Did you run the Best Damn Race? What did you think?


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2 responses to “Best Damn Race, Safety Harbor, Florida: Feb. 1, 2014 {recap}

  1. It stinks I missed you! Congrats on your race!! It was a fun one!

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