6/7/15 – Newport, RI
Travel: We spent the night in Somerset, MA at my parents house where we left our sleeping daughter at 5:05am and headed out. We stopped to pick up breakfast at Dunkin Donuts in Newport before making our way to Fort Adams.
Logistics: We arrived at 6am and there were very few cars parked along the fields. There were volunteers directing us. Parking was free. Bib pick-up was inside the fort and was quick. No ID required. We received a small bag [KIND bar, small can of Polar seltzer, Bondiband], t-shirt [cotton], and bib. Very little was set up inside the fort at this early hour.
Pre-race: There was very little fan-fare. There were some port-a-potties outside the fort as well as real bathrooms in the guest center. We just milled around and I met up with Barbara, a fellow runner who is doing the AMR #findyourstrong marathon challenge with me.
Start: We lined up in the parking lot near the Guest Center and there were no corrals. There was a small timing mat – no arch -that the large group had to maneuver through and over. There was no national anthem [that I can remember] and then there was a gun start.
Course: The first 3/4 mile was within Fort Adams State Park and was very slow with 2110 runners all packed into the narrow road. We ran on Ocean Drive from mile two through six, which I loved before turning onto Bellevue Avenue for one mile. We ran past many of Newport’s world famous mansions, before taking a left turn and heading back through more residential neighborhoods towards the park.
Finish: We finished inside the walls of the fort. The finish line was deceiving because I thought it was just inside the fort once we went through the tunnel/wall. Once inside, I realized that I still had to run around part of the inside of the fort. Unfortunately, I started to pick up my pace too early and was not prepared to have to continue running.
Post-race: There was fruit, bagels, candy, water, and KIND bars. I was surprised that you only got water as you crossed the finish line and did not find anything else to drink, except some samples and the beer tent. We did not stick around for the beer since the line was huge and Brian would not be able to get in.
highlights: This was probably the most beautiful course I have ever run. It was all very familiar and I enjoyed all the memories I recalled of fun family times. This was a very cheap race – only costing $40.
lowlights: I wish they had more options for drinks at the finish line. I wish the finish line was where I thought it was going to be. I wish the t-shirts were tech shirts.