Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Open Letter to Royal Victoria Marathon

To Whom It May Concern:

I would like to express my concern regarding some of the policies the RVM displayed during this previous race:

1. The method of package pick up provided an opportunity for anyone to pick a name, and from that time there was no attempt to verify this selection. Your website states, “If you cannot pick up your package, please arrange for someone to pick it up for you; they must have a copy of your registration confirmation email. Race numbers will be posted at Race Package Pickup.” This was not the case as addition packages were picked up for other runners without this confirmation. The full marathon may function under a stricter policy; I would hope so as it is a Boston qualifier. It concerns me that anyone could pick up a package and there was no formal attempt to verify that the person picking up the package matched with the information correlated to the package. I would like to know why picture id is not required for participants. In the end I paid $75, what would you have done if someone else took my package, because I could have easily taken someone else’s?

2. I work in the health field, and given how conscious of H1N1 and other similar related viruses and bacterial infections we are, especially presently, I was appalled that the oranges and banana were not being handed out and rather in common vessels. Participants over the course have used port-a-potty’s, placed their hands on the ground, mouths and noses, sweated and in the process picked up any number of germs, it is irresponsible to then facilitate them putting other racers at risk. If you were short on volunteers to hand them out, then may I suggest in the future that trays be used, which would have been better than the boxes. This method could cut down on the potential for contamination. As you will see this letter has been cc’d to the Health Department, I feel that this given the current fear over a pandemic was a gross oversight, and it must be addresses.

I hope that the Royal Victoria Marathon will continue to grow and mature in its policies in the future, though I have no intention of running it again.

In addition - not included in the letter I was disappointed in regards to the community support, the music stations, or more so lack there of, overall organization and in general the whole race. When you've seen it work, it becomes very obvious when it doesn't RVM was a case of that.

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