The concept is really quite simple…
Get up to five fellow runners together (or use our Facebook page to find a team or spare runners) and show up at the start line. Okay, there’s a little more to it than that but it is pretty easy to grasp.
Each team is responsible for providing their own support vehicle to get the team to the start line and between exchange points. At the Start line, teams will cheer on the first runner when the horn is fired. After that, the vehicle—filled with the remaining team members—will race ahead to the exchange point. The vehicle will park at the exchange point and the second runner will get ready for the hand-off. While waiting at the exchange point, participants will have time to stretch, refuel, cheer on fellow runners, flirt, and talk trash with the other teams. After the first runner arrives, the team piles into their vehicle and head towards the next exchange point. They repeat this pattern all the way to the finish.
In a team relay, strategy lies in the order in which you assign legs to the members of the team. The team captain should assess the difficulty of each leg using the information on the Fall 50 website. Some legs are longer and/or hillier and some legs are shorter and/or flatter than others. All of these factors should be considered in assigning the legs to the members of the team. Ultimately, each team member can run as few or as many legs as they want. They can also run sequential legs (e.g. runner one runs legs 1 and 2 before handing off) or staggered legs (e.g. runner one runs leg 1 and then leg 6 later in the day). See Rules below for more details. As long as you use the designated exchange points, you may break up the legs as you deem appropriate. Naturally, the smartest strategy is to assign the most challenging legs to the strongest runners. In the end all that really matters is making it to the finish line!
1. Register Team Pace Honestly
During registration, teams will be asked to submit each of their member’s anticipated pace (minutes per mile). This information will be used to efficiently assign teams to the appropriate wave. The objective is to have the slower teams start earlier and the faster teams start later so that ALL of the teams finish within a 3-4 hour window in the afternoon. This will require honesty on the part of the registrants. If a team finishes two or more hours ahead of their projected pace (an average differential of 2:24 per mile over the entire 50 miles), they may be disqualified by the race director. If a team falls behind on their pace, there will be no repercussions although the finish line will close at 6:30 pm.
2. Start with your Wave
Teams will be assigned to waves based on anticipated pace with slower teams starting earlier and faster teams starting later. The assignments will be announced several weeks prior to the event. Teams are required to start with their wave.
3. Run the Entire 50 Mile Route
There is no rule regarding how many legs each team member must run nor the order in which the team must assign the legs. A veteran distance runner could run three legs enabling a novice runner to only run one leg. The first runner could run the first two legs OR he/she could run the first and sixth legs; it doesn’t really matter. Bottom line: It’s a 50 mile run; the team needs to work together to complete the 50 miles.
4. You Must use Designated Exchanges
It is important from a safety perspective that teams use the designated hand-offs. Exception: If a teammate breaks down in the middle of their leg and is forced to withdraw from the event, another member of the team must take over where that runner left off in order to ensure that the 50 miles are completed.
5. NO RUNNING WITH DOGS
Yes, people have run the entire Fall 50 course with their dog. We’re not sure the dog had a vote in this and it made many animal lovers pretty angry. In some areas with narrow shoulders, running with a dog could pose a safety hazard to the dog owner, other runners and/or the dog itself. For these reasons and more importantly, to reduce runner congestion on the roads, we prohibit running with dogs along the course route. Pets are allowed to join in the fun and come along inside support vehicles. We ask that you pick up after your pet at all times, especially in the rest areas. Pets are not allowed anywhere in the Nicolet Bay Campground at Peninsula Park and they are prohibited from entering the post-race party tents.