Daily Archives: September 20, 2014

What Happens If…

…there is a lightning storm in the middle of a race?


I have done many, many races now.  Somehow I have had pretty good luck when it comes to weather.  I remember one small race that was delayed slightly by passing storms.  I also remember one Ottawa Race Weekend that looked a little iffy as some black clouds and a bit of lightning followed a path along the Ottawa River but managed to avoid downtown.

Here is the description of tomorrow from Environment Canada:

“Showers. Risk of thunderstorms in the morning and early in the afternoon. Amount 30 to 40 mm.”  

Lovely.  Combine that with the Weather Network, which is predicting the “Feels Like” temperature to hit 29 degrees Celsius and things are not looking so great for tomorrow’s Army Run.  It has made me wonder though, what happens if in the middle of a race the weather gets nasty?  I know if it happens at the beginning they will delay or cancel.  But you are over in another province, half way through 21 km and they have to shut things down for safety, where do you go?  Do buses pick you up?  Do you hope you are near a public building in which you can seek shelter?  Do you rely on strangers to welcome you into their home?  I had never thought about this scenario.  What a nightmare that would be for race organizers and participants.  I’m sure that right know there are some organizers who are watching the weather forecast carefully, praying for changes.

A final question, do you think weather websites notice a huge increase in hits on big race weekends?  I have checked 3 weather websites more times than I can count today.  It is an obsession I can’t stop, even though I know they only update a few times a day.  Somehow I think if I check often enough it will change for the better.  Here’s hoping!