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Monday, August 13, 2007

Race Review: Pop Weaver 5K

This race also known as the 2007 Weaver Popcorn Kernal Klassic is run on a loop course in the countryside surrounding little Van Buren, IN.  It is famous for its free post-race popcorn and being part of the annual Popcorn Festival.  Hosted by Pop Weaver Popcorn it is a relatively cheap race with bags upon bags of popcorn given away to age group winners.

Each participant, presumably, received a post race e-mail with stats about their race.  Here is what my e-mail said:

Congratulations on finishing the 2007 Weaver Popcorn Kernal Klassic on August 11, 2007.  For your records, the weather that day was Sunny, Nice & Cool.
There were 5 finishers in the Men 25 to 29 age group and
106 finishers in the race.
Your overall finish place was 17 and your age group finish place
was 2.  Your overall finish percentile was 16 while your age group percentile was 40.  Your time of 19:30 gave you a  6:17 pace per mile.

It was definitely cooler than the preceding days but still warm! I am okay with my overall time of 19:30, but ran 9 seconds faster last year and over a minute faster in 2005, so that is frustrating.  My splits were 5:59, 6:50, and 6:40 for the last 1.1 (which actually breaks down to 6:03 pace).  My GPS-enabled friends agreed that the overall course was accurate but that the specific mile markers may have been a little off. 

The race pretty much started on time and quickly leaves the town for some country roads.  There is shade for the first and final stretches, but most of the race is run on rural, corn-field lined roads, without any shade.  The 8:30 start made for decent weather on this specific day, but the sun was definitely out in full force.  The course featured 3 water stops, but only one actually had people passing out water.  The course is easy to follow because you are basically making a square! This is also a popular race for local high school teams to participate in and they have their own chute since they can't win prizes or actually pay to participate (I believe). 

After the finish they had plenty of ice-cold water and fruit available for all participants.  This years awards ceremony was a little confusing.  Someone the overall walkers won in amazing times of 7 something for the guys and 14 something for the females. The walk was a 5K.  I think they mistook the fun run sheet for the walkers results.  Sadly, this was never really corrected and the walkers where never publicly recognized, they made a passing comment at the end about walkers coming up to get popcorn. 

Now for the fun of the whole event.  Overall 1st place winners received a gift certificate and a bag of popcorn.  Let me explain abut these bags of popcorn! Large, color-coordinated, paper bags are filled with boxes of various Pop Weaver brand popcorn. First place is blue, second is red, and third is white and supposedly each bag has a little less popcorn than the preceding.  This year I brought home like 26 bags of microwave popcorn in my 2nd place bag.  We traded around to get rid of the kettle corn (my wife doesn't like it and we still have a half-eaten box from last year!) and took a few extra boxes at the end of the awards.  So that provides a little more of a festive environment for post-race activities.

Overall a good race. All results are posted here.

 

 Cross-posted at Run Central Indiana.

 

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