A crucial aspect of race management is deciding when to hold your race. Except for holiday races, hosting your race on a weekend is a given considering the Monday-Friday work week. But the weekend gives you two options: Saturday and Sunday. Which day is best for your race? Let’s take a look at the pros and cons of each.
Pros: Hosting a Saturday race gives your athletes a way to kick off the weekend and get the race out of the way. This allows them to relax and enjoy the rest of their weekend. If athletes are traveling from afar to get to your race, this is an extra bonus as they’ll have more time to explore the city before returning to work or make a vacation out of their trip.
Cons: Given the drudgery of the 40-hour week, waking up at 5 a.m. to run on your first day off might not sound very appealing. If you are hosting an expo or need multiple days for athlete packet pick-up, Saturday may not allow enough time for you to hold those. Additionally, most businesses are open on Saturday making street closures difficult.
Pros: Planning a Sunday race gives you both Friday and Saturday to host an array of pre-race activities, including clinics, course previews and other functions. Generally speaking it is also easier to find race volunteers for Sunday.
Cons: Churchgoers will have to choose between your race and church and, though athletes have more time to prepare, they also have less time to recover before diving back into work. A Sunday race also means less freedom on Saturday night: both you and your athletes will want a good night’s rest before the race.
So which is better for your race? The key here is that it’s your race. What’s best for one race might not be best for another! Consider factors like race distance, location, time of year, course, type of athlete racing and post-race activities. These race day elements will help you to make an informed decision that will be best for your event in your local market. For more race management tips, visit the Resources section of our website.
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