Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Fort Collins Running Club: Best Value in Town


Dana and I have been managing the Tortoise and Hare (T&H) racing series for the Fort Collins Running Club for a couple of years now, and it has always been great value, especially for members. This year, the ante has been upped, and I think the board's decision to make all races free for members has made this series perhaps the best value in Northern Colorado, if not the country.

The T&H is a series of five handicapped races that get longer as the series progresses, from 4k to 10k. Runners' previous times are run through an algorithm that spits out predicted times for the next race in addition to a handicap that in theory gives every runner an equal chance of being first across the finish line. Points are awarded to the top ten finishers and accumulated through the series. At the end of the series, the top three in the standings win checks of $30, $20 and $10 made out to the local running store of their choice. That's right, members get the chance to make 60 bucks (two series per year) plus enjoy ten free races. The club is essentially paying its members to get out there and race while socializing with like-minded individuals.

At the start/finish of the Spring Creek 6k

And there's more. Not only do members get to race for free on the first Sunday of every month, but they are also treated to a free post-race breakfast at Gibbs Bagel, all for $20 in annual membership dues. And the benefits don't end there. Membership also gets you a subscription to Colorado Runner, a 15 percent discount at Fort Collins' two running stores (Foot of the Rockies and Runners Roost), $15 off the entry to the Horsetooth Half Marathon and $5 off the July 4th FireKracker 5k (both owned by the club), and a free Christmas brunch at Avogadro's Number. I am sure you would be hard pressed to find a better running deal anywhere in the country.

Any local runners looking to get in a monthly speed workout for next to no cost should consider joining the club. Also, check out Felix Wong's website for a blow-by-blow account of last weekend's race, in addition to his archived reports from months and years prior.

3 comments:

  1. That does sound like a good bargain with all of the extras thrown in.

    In Denver, you can join the Colo Masters Racing Assoc for $25/year and get into 13 races for free. None of the extras that you have though. Also in Denver, but not as good of a bargain, the Rocky Mtn Road Runners do a similar handicap style series.

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  2. Good sales job Nick. You sold me! I was a member back in 05/06 when we first moved to FC, but didn't see much benefit at the time. I'm signing back up today! Kyle

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