Franson and I slept in and then treated ourselves to breakfast at Denny’s. Today is a pretty relaxed day for those of us running on Thursday/Friday. We are heading over to walk the courses this afternoon – hopefully the crowd will thin out in the middle of the day.
I have to say that overall, the event has run reasonably well for a new site. The paddock isn’t as good as Forbes, obviously, but the helf grass thing is working ok. I’ve heard some complaints but the natives haven’t picked up the pitchforks and torches yet. If we get rain during the week, it might start to get ugly. So far, so good. There is less walking than at Forbes as everything is a little more compact.
The pad is a disappoint though. In addition to the grip issues (see my post about the warmup), the surface just isn’t that big. It is probably about 20% bigger in both directions than the old south course, probably about 800×1000. With the buffer zone between the two courses, each side is like a 3:2 rectangle. I think there is no way the courses will be able to be as fast and open as a typical Nationals course. which is going to disappoint a lot of people. That being said, the courses look good on paper – I’m particularly thrilled that there is a lot of transitional stuff, which should give me a good chance against the MR2s.
(Side bitch about the warmup course. I can’t believe they laid out a warmup without a single slalom. There were two 3 cone slalom but they were really more like offsets.)
One former National Champion who ran the ProSolo described the site as a place you would “make a note not to come back to.” I’m keeping an open mind, but I do stare wistfully at the Forbes Field gate every time I drive by.