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Road Race Management 


Race Directors' Meeting

November 8-10, 2018| Vinoy Renaissance  | St. Petersburg, FL

Schedule of Events for the 2017 RRM Race Directors' Meeting and Trade Exhibit

The Schedule for 2018 is still being finalized and will be posted here in July, 2018. Below appears the 2017 Schedule, which gives an idea of the types of sessions and activities you can expect in 2018.

THURSDAY, November 9

2:30 P.M. - 5:45 P.M. Packet Pickup

2:30 P.M. - 6:00 P.M. Trade Exhibit

6:00 P.M. - 7:15 Gasparilla Distance Classic Welcome Reception - (includes MarathonFoto/Road Race Management “Race Director of the Year” Award, presented by Electric City Printing)

FRIDAY, November 10

7:45 A.M. - 8:40 A.M. Continental Breakfast

8:00 A.M. - 5:45 A.M. Trade Exhibit

8:00 A.M. - 8:45 A.M. Packet Pickup

8:45 A.M. - 8:55 A.M. Welcome

8:55 A.M. - 9:55 A.M. Successful Rebranding
How was The Hartford Marathon rebranded? With a change in sponsor(s) they had their work cut out for them. This will be an in-depth look at the rebranding initiative, focusing on rebranding, marketing, and replacing sponsors.

Faculty: Beth Shluger
Moderators: Jeff Darman and Phil Stewart

9:55 A.M. - 10:15 A.M. Publix Gasparilla Distance Classic Coffee Break

10:15 A.M. - 11:15 A.M. Advertising and Marketing Your Event with Social Media
This session will serve to educate directors in the fast-changing area of social media advertising options. The use of Facebook and other outlets for extremely targeted advertising is the wave of the future. This session will demystify how to best utilize, measure the effectiveness of and allocate resources for your social media advertising campaign.

Faculty: Heather Whaling
Moderator: Jeff Darman and Phil Stewart

11:15 A.M. - 11:35 P.M. Gatorade Endurance Break

11:35 A.M. - 12:35 P.M. Best Practices for Accommodating Physically Challenged Athletes  
It has been over 40 years since wheelchairs came on to the road race scene, but now the range of possibilities and accommodations has multiplied. As inspiring as it is to see the progress and competition in this area, it has brought with it many challenges, sometimes frustration and even litigation.  

Faculty: Dave McGillivray
Moderators: Jeff Darman and Phil Stewart

12:35 P.M. - 2:00 P.M. Lunch Break and Trade Exhibit Visits

2:00 P.M. - 3:00 P.M. Volunteer Recruitment, Rewarding and Retention
Events have a large need for volunteers. We offer a description of how the team at J and A Racing has developed a system. At a time when it is getting more difficult for many events to get the needed number of volunteers, we will address why J and A Racing has been so successful and how others can learn from them.

Faculty: Amy and Jerry Frostick
Moderator: Phil Stewart

3:00 P.M. - 3:30 P.M. Trade Exhibit Break

3:30 P.M. - 4:35 P.M. Event Anatomy — Return to Gasparilla
The history of Tampa’s Gasparilla Distance Classic — as one of the sport’s prestigious and venerated events — mirrors the evolution of the sport. The theme of this session is to trace how Gasparilla has evolved and adapted since 1978. Over the years the event has offered a large international prize purse, rescinded it, and then brought back local and American prize money. It changed the mix of events as the popularity of different distances changed. Gasparilla provides a unique glimpse into the changes of the character of the sport over the last 40 years.

Faculty: Susan Harmeling
Moderators: Phil Stewart

4:45 P.M. - 5:45 P.M. Ashworth Awards Race Directors’ Reception in Conjunction with Trade Exhibit
Talk with exhibitors of awards, competitor numbers, banners, registration and timing products, apparel, running organizations, and other web services, applications and more. It’s a relaxed opportunity to meet fellow race directors, the faculty and exhibitors in an informal atmosphere.

5:45 P.M. - 8:00 P.M. Keynote Dinner - Alessio Punzi
Alessio Punzi is IAAF's Road Running Manager. Alessio will update the audience as the IAAF seeks a greater worldwide role in road running. Most U. S. event directors know what the IAAF is, but to many it is a “distant” entity with little relevance to their events. Learn about “IAAF Label” events and other IAAF road running initiatives. Alessio will provide updates on IAAF activities in drug testing, promoting the Sport, cleaning up the sport’s image, future plans for IAAF road running and cross country championships, and its strategy regarding non-traditional running events.

The dinner includes the announcement and presentation of the MarathonFoto/Road Race Management Lifetime Achievement Award, after which many will head to the entertainment at the Ribfest down the street. Details of the musical acts are available at and include Orleans, Ambrosia, Dennis DeYoung and the music of Styx, and the Charlie Daniels Band. The Friday night headliner will be Paul Rodgers of Bad Company fame!

SATURDAY, November 11

8:30 A.M. - 9:00 A.M. Breakfast Snacks and Publix Gasparilla Distance Classic Coffee Break

8:30 A.M. - 11:30 A.M. Trade Exhibit

9:00 A.M. - 10:00 A.M. Site Setup Best Practices and Guidelines
How do you get stuff from here to there? How do you keep with tight timelines, mesh schedules with subcontractors, police, permit rules, volunteers, and uncooperative weather? How do you communicate your plans, timelines, and oversee the operation while not spending every waking moment on the site? What are key elements to assure vendors do not get in each other’s way? And when the event is over how do you tear it down relatively quickly?

Faculty: Mike Nishi
Moderators: Jeff Darman and Phil Stewart 

10:00 A.M. - 10:30 A.M. Gatorade / Trade Exhibit Break

10:30 A.M. - 11:30 A.M. What Is Going on Upfront?
An examination of trends in the elite and front end of the sport. We will explore the trend in offering American prize money, appearance money, the scaling back of prize purses and the up and down interest in open, elite fields. Are bidding for U. S. Championships or seeking IAAF labels worth it in marketing your event? How much does elite competition matter to the participants, sponsors and communities? If a good elite field is a goal, how do you balance foreign and American athletes? How much of your budget should you invest in elite athletes? How do you deal with inarticulate elites? And what are the options, realities, trends and likely scenarios for the next few years? How does an event best decide strategy? And how much is predicated on the director’s wishes and influence?

Faculty: Don Kardong
Moderator: Phil Stewart 

11:30 A.M. Trade Exhibit Closes