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Race Director



 
 
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  #1  
Old December 3rd 04, 01:38 PM
ClydeEvans
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Default Race Director

I'm the director for a small 5k race, and I'm going crazy trying to
make sure we correctly handle registration and results for so many
walk-ups. Does anyone have information about automating this process.
It sounds good in theory, but knowing what I do about information
management systems, I have a number of concerns:

We do data entry/reporting for pre-race registration and official
results posting, but I've not seen anything to convince me that we can
get walk-up information into a system in time to correctly calculate
winners for the awards ceremony. I'm not ready to eliminate race-day
registration, so I'm stuck.

If anyone has seen this process automated, I'd like to know. If not,
I'd like to hear suggestions on how to drive accurate registration info
into the results process.

Thanks,

Clyde

  #2  
Old December 3rd 04, 02:38 PM
Mike Tennent
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"ClydeEvans" wrote:

I'm the director for a small 5k race, and I'm going crazy trying to
make sure we correctly handle registration and results for so many
walk-ups. Does anyone have information about automating this process.
It sounds good in theory, but knowing what I do about information
management systems, I have a number of concerns:

We do data entry/reporting for pre-race registration and official
results posting, but I've not seen anything to convince me that we can
get walk-up information into a system in time to correctly calculate
winners for the awards ceremony. I'm not ready to eliminate race-day
registration, so I'm stuck.

If anyone has seen this process automated, I'd like to know. If not,
I'd like to hear suggestions on how to drive accurate registration info
into the results process.

Thanks,

Clyde



Clyde,

The software our club uses allows databases from separate computers to
be merged. The guy that does our computer stuff usually has a couple
of folks with laptops entering the walk up data.

But even then, it can get hectic if there are lots of walk ups. Once a
race grows to a certain point, you have to abandon day-of-race if
you're using computers.

All our races are small, but we have one that's got lots of potential
and it'll probably reach that point sometime. Not sure what we'll do
then...

Mike Tennent
"IronPenguin"

  #3  
Old December 3rd 04, 02:42 PM
Donovan Rebbechi
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On 2004-12-03, ClydeEvans wrote:
I'm the director for a small 5k race, and I'm going crazy trying to
make sure we correctly handle registration and results for so many
walk-ups. Does anyone have information about automating this process.
It sounds good in theory, but knowing what I do about information
management systems, I have a number of concerns:

We do data entry/reporting for pre-race registration and official
results posting, but I've not seen anything to convince me that we can
get walk-up information into a system in time to correctly calculate
winners for the awards ceremony. I'm not ready to eliminate race-day
registration, so I'm stuck.

If anyone has seen this process automated, I'd like to know. If not,
I'd like to hear suggestions on how to drive accurate registration info
into the results process.


I've been to several chip-scored races where they had race day registration,
but I can see why this could be quite difficult. Most of the places they do
this are those using chip scoring.

The way I've seen people "drive accurate registration info into the results
process" is simple -- minimise the information you need to enter. For example,
you need a unique identifier for each entrant (for example, a race bib). If you
have age group awards, you either need to
(1) additionally enter the age group
(2) tabulate it later, or
(3) encode age information in the unique identifier (e.g. by giving out
different bib numbers for different age groups)

Other information like names, addresses, etc probably should not be entered for
every single runner on race day (unless you have a high capacity data entry
operation) -- may want need to set it up so that you only have to enter bib
numbers (and possibly age groups).

Cheers,
--
Donovan Rebbechi
http://pegasus.rutgers.edu/~elflord/
  #4  
Old December 3rd 04, 09:23 PM
amh
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"ClydeEvans" wrote in message roups.com...
I'm the director for a small 5k race, and I'm going crazy trying to
make sure we correctly handle registration and results for so many
walk-ups. Does anyone have information about automating this process.
It sounds good in theory, but knowing what I do about information
management systems, I have a number of concerns:

We do data entry/reporting for pre-race registration and official
results posting, but I've not seen anything to convince me that we can
get walk-up information into a system in time to correctly calculate
winners for the awards ceremony. I'm not ready to eliminate race-day
registration, so I'm stuck.


In reality you can't. Accuracy and speed are mutually exclusive goals.
Unless you have an army of data entry people.



If anyone has seen this process automated, I'd like to know.


You could get a bank of computers with touch screens so runners could
do it themselves. But sounds expensive to me.

If not,
I'd like to hear suggestions on how to drive accurate registration info
into the results process.

Do the important entry first Name, gender, age and race number. After
the dust has settled enter the other information later. the only real
reason to have address and such is to send them information to next
year's event. Therefore you've got a good 6 months to do the data
entry.

My club has a race in late April. We can get upwards of 150 race day
entries. There is one woman doing the data entry, she is very frazzled
by the end of the morning. We get it done. You should be able to also.
At the very least hope for rain. You'll probably get fewer than 25 or
so post entries in rainy conditions.

It can get sticky when a post entrant claims they should have won an
award. Then you have to go through the records.

Andy
  #5  
Old December 4th 04, 12:16 AM
Dan Stumpus
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ClydeEvans wrote:
I'm the director for a small 5k race, and I'm going crazy trying to
make sure we correctly handle registration and results for so many
walk-ups.


I ran a small 10k (the Loyola Marymount run for the Bay in L.A., I believe),
and they had us enter our race number, name, age, gender, and maybe
addresses on machine readable cards (fill in the bubble, I think), which
they scanned and merged with their pre-reg database.

It was tedious for the entrants, but easy for the race crew.

-- Dan


  #6  
Old December 4th 04, 04:39 AM
Miss Anne Thrope
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Default

Cattle prods, and lots of em.

  #7  
Old December 4th 04, 08:06 AM
Brian Baresch
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Default

In reality you can't. Accuracy and speed are mutually exclusive goals.
Unless you have an army of data entry people.


Right -- "Good, fast, cheap: Pick two." Organizing a race, cheap is a
given, so you just choose good or fast.

--
Brian P. Baresch
Fort Worth, Texas, USA
Professional editing and proofreading

If you're going through hell, keep going. --Winston Churchill
  #8  
Old December 4th 04, 12:00 PM
Doug Freese
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Default


"Mike Tennent" wrote in message
...
But even then, it can get hectic if there are lots of walk ups. Once a
race grows to a certain point, you have to abandon day-of-race if
you're using computers.



A compromise to get some walk-ups is to clearly state on the application
that day of race registration will stop say 30 minutes before the race
starts to allow the last minute data entry. Depending on past history of
entrants and data entry this catch up time can vary.


All our races are small, but we have one that's got lots of potential
and it'll probably reach that point sometime. Not sure what we'll do
then...


The answer is chips and pay to have the race timed.


-Doug


  #9  
Old December 4th 04, 06:30 PM
Doug Freese
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Default


"ClydeEvans" wrote in message
oups.com...
I'm the director for a small 5k race, and I'm going crazy trying to
make sure we correctly handle registration and results for so many
walk-ups. Does anyone have information about automating this process.
It sounds good in theory, but knowing what I do about information
management systems, I have a number of concerns:


If you have a small 5k race then why fret over the computer stuff race
day? I think numbered index cards for a small race are ideal. By
shuffling the cards in age group piles you can do the results
immediately. Yes, you need to remind people to fill in name, gender and
age and return the card. If they don't return the card you put unknown
in the results From a scoring perspective all you need to do is write
the times down as people finish. You can then do the computer stuff when
you feel like it.


Food for thought



  #10  
Old December 4th 04, 08:05 PM
Donovan Rebbechi
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Default

On 2004-12-03, amh wrote:

Do the important entry first Name, gender, age and race number. After


IMO even names can wait until after the race -- it's easy to enter
bib, age and gender (7 digits unless Doug is in the race), but names take more
time.

Whether it's a good idea to defer entering names like this depends on several
factors (number of walkins, number of award winners, and the specifics of the
system being used).

Cheers,
--
Donovan Rebbechi
http://pegasus.rutgers.edu/~elflord/
 




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