Event Safety

Course Design

Safety considerations include course safety, alternative routes, time of day, traffic conditions, road/trail surface, weather considerations, and emergency access. Again, this is not only for the competitors but also for the spectators. If there is a large church on the course for a Sunday road race event the potential for congestion or public complaints may be high. The difficulty of the planned course should also support and mirror the talents of your expected field of competitors. Inexperienced riders on a technically challenging course will not be an optimal experience. If another route is safer it is highly recommended that you make all efforts to secure that route for your event.

Spectator and community considerations define whether the event positively affects or has little negative impact on the community. If your event has closed down every road into the city center and business owners complain that there was a decrease in sales, the municipality might decide that the event isn’t worth the disruption to the community. However, if the event draws participants and spectators to the community, and increases sales then the municipality would most likely welcome the event back with open arms. A good example is the Breckenridge Firecracker 50 that incorporates the mountain bike race’s neutral rollout as the start of the town’s Fourth of July parade. The streets are packed with spectators and shops are selling their wares. It is always recommended that you request input from community leaders on the front-end of building your event, rather than on the back-end. This process will only help in building a successful community partnership and lead to other areas of opportunity, such as volunteers, sponsors, etc.     

When you are first scouting a race course and its start and/or finish area some factors to keep in mind are accessibility, parking, competitor warm-up and staging area, expo area, traffic on the course, course condition, adverse weather, course conditions, and rural or urban benefits or disadvantages. Rural benefits might include decreased traffic, but can be a disadvantage to the services at that venue. Urban benefits can include just the opposite. Is the course suited for an out and back, point-to-point, or circuits?

Organizer's Guide to Road Events