With the growing popularity in cycling events these days, we thought of grabbing some tips from Sam Ames who puts on such events as the Rock Cobbler for a few how to tips. There isn’t much of a “how to” book out there on putting on such events so learning from other people who have done so already is usually your best case.
We participated in the Rock Cobbler and had a great time as it wasn’t your cookie cutter straight forward event. The course was long and hard none the less but having sag stops on top of hike-a-bike climbs which offer redbull vodka shots, well that’s one way to lighten the mood. More and more events are popping up all over the place and we’re all about supporting them and looking to see them grow!
#1—Treat your participants like customers and the old saying, “treat them the way you want to be treated” is VERY true. They have a choice in how and where they spend their $$. Just because it’s not a retail purchase it is still a purchase. Sometimes promoters lose sight of this. EACH and every participant matters!
#2—HAVE FUN! If you are having fun and your crew is having fun it bleeds into the participant’s perception of your event. It can still be beat down hard, competitive, etc but at the end of the day we are not saving humanity or lives. HAVE FUN. Try and think of things to do other events are NOT doing that you think participants will enjoy.
#3—Keep communication to participants and volunteers clear and concise. And get back to people within 1 day!! Have the plan first but know sometimes someone will have a question or an issue you did not think of. Add it to your communication.
#4—Make the parameters of any “rules” very clear and communicate them easily to participants.
#5—Spent a great deal of time thinking about “what if’s”…rider safety, communication, SAG vehicles. And execute accordingly. Have backup plans!
Photo: Derek Smith