So I ran a 10 km on June 30th. It was quite warm, so I didn't run fast, but I did have fun (for the most part...it was a warm morning - so there was a little cursing the heat, but that's why I slowed it down). Since it was the first year of the event, I thought I'd post a few thoughts about the race.
Race Pick-Up: Kit pickup was fairly smooth and easy. And by kit I mean bib. There were shirts for the first 1000 or so entrants, but we weren't them so we just had to pick up our bibs. Pretty easy and no problem picking up someone else's bib - which is always good.
Start line organization: The start line 'festivities' were pretty easy. We were fairly early and I had no problem with line-ups at port-o-potties. There weren't a tonne, but it was a small enough race that that was ok. -1 for not having hand sanitizer there though. I like to sanitize my hands.
It was fairly easy to find the start line and the instructions were fairly clear that the 10 km runners should be on the right side facing one way, the half marathoners on the left facing the other way. Sounds a little weird but it was actually fairly cool! The same start line going opposite directions made for a pretty fun start - I'd like to see a video.
The race started about 5 minutes late but the announcer promised it would start on time next year. There was no start line mat though. Not a huge deal - it wasn't a huge race - but it is always nice to have a start mat.
Route: Jordan sold it to us as a "flat course." I suppose for Sherbrooke, it was indeed flat - but there were a few hills so I wouldn't call it flat. Not terrible, but reasonably challenging.
It didn't matter too much to me - but this bugged Jordan (he wasn't wearing a garmin but rather was relying on his watch) - not all the kilometres were marked for the 10 k. Once the routes merged, there were half markers, and I thought I saw some near the beginning, but the 10 km route didn't seem to be consistently marked.
The biggest complaint I have would be the water stations. I'm not sure if they weren't prepared for how hot it was or weren't quite prepared for the number of people - but the first station was out of water when I got there. They had sports drink, but no water. I was carrying a small bottle so I managed ok, but it would have been nice to dump a cup on my head. Mostly, though, I was worried that they wouldn't refill by the time the half marathoners went through. I'm hoping they did! The remaining stations had water though.
My biggest rave? The misting station! They had a misting arch set up and it was my favourite part of the route. I stopped for about 15 seconds and stood just beside it and let it soak me. It was awesome. (both it, and the lady spraying runners with her garden hose were awesome).
Finish: Once we crossed the finish line (and caught our breath - by the end I figured the faster I ran, the faster I'd finish and get to dump some water on my head and sit in the shade) there was cold water, a very visible medical tent (not that I needed it, but I find that important), and the volunteers were really nice. There was also free beer samples and pretty good food options (ice cream? yes please!)
All in all - a few hiccups - but a well run race. I would run it again. I can't imagine starting a half marathon at 8:45 am at the end of June though... Sherbrooke 10 km - thumbs up. (oh - and Jordan finished 5th overall - kind of crazy...though he was disappointed with his time).