Zack’s Corner – April 2017

Zack Scharlepp, GWTC President

A large U-Haul, three full size trucks, a Jeep Compass, and Gulf Winds Track Club’s pull behind trailer were all used in the move. And the muscles of Mike Boll, Bill Hillison, Katie Sack, Jim Halley, Eric Godin, Bill Lott, and Rhys Scharlepp, my 3 month old son made it all happen. Not the required compilation of vehicles and characters necessary to move the track club’s stash of goodies the eleven miles to the new storage units, but the ones who played a starring role on Saturday, March 18, 2017. This was my first look behind the curtain of Bill Lott and Katie Sack’s world, and I was amazed and overwhelmed at the amount of “stuff” that goes into making the local race circuit here in Tallahassee happen. I felt pride knowing that our Club is able to provide the materials necessary to make all of our local races as well organized as we have all become accustomed to. On many Saturday’s these materials find themselves strewn all over Tallahassee, supporting as many as 3, 4, or 5 races a day. It also hit me just how much a race director has on their plate to make a race a success. A realization that left me, a first time race director as of April 2, 2017, in fear of what I have gotten myself into.

Water coolers, cups, course marking, mileage signs, cones, nutrition, registration, packet pickup, timing, medals, after race festivities, awards, course marshals, volunteers; all need attention on race day. That is not to mention the months of lead work to line up sponsors, food, shirts, permits, and other red tape. While no race goes on without some hiccup, the small mistakes are dwarfed by the number of things that go unnoticed simply because they work – and they work because someone planned them that way. So with this fresh on my mind, I say thank you to all our race directors, your commitment to excellence shows every Saturday. Rachel and I are both honored and frightened to join your ranks and no doubt will lean on your wisdom and experience as we embark on this journey.

As the page turns to April, the race calendar begins to fill. First Springtime 10k on April 1, followed by the Palace Saloon 5k on April 15, both of which fall on this year’s Grand Prix schedule. If you can’t make either of Gulf Winds’ sponsored races, don’t fret, there are 19 other options for your choosing in April, ranging from 5k to 50k. Just remember, whatever event you choose to run, to thank your race director and remember just how much time and effort went into making the race happen.

Your humble president,