Cork High & Bottle Deep Half Marathon

Tiffany Kehoe – (HF18768) – Cork High and Bottle Deep-New Jersey

I know there were a lot of members here that attended this race. Please feel free to post your agreements of disagreements. This is just my perspective.
I really wanted to say good things about this race, but I really can’t…. I was left with a few things that didn’t sit well that unfortunately soured my overall experience, and therefore, my ability to recommend this race.
Packet pickup was the same day as the race and was relativity easy and fast. It was a bit awkward when one of the ladies giving my friend a bib got a bit preachy about her taking safety pins and where to place her bib. We are both experienced runners and know about bib placement. It was explained to her that my friend had a running belt and did not need pins. This fell on deaf ears and the lecture continued. It was a bit weird, but we overlooked it as perhaps she was trying to be helpful.
The race started on time and the course was well marked. It was a really pretty course that was extremely flat. I would consider this a paved bike trail. It did get a bit congested with the out and back set up as there were bikers and people taking over parts of the course. The police watching the roads were very nice and helpful. I felt very safe with traffic.
The water stops were great on the way out but by the back section of the race, they just kind of pooped out. By the time I got to them, no one was handing out water or cheering and just looked defeated and cold. I don’t blame them, I was a bit cold myself and I was running, but it would have been nice to feel a bit more energy. The best stop was the one right after the turnaround. They were extremely kind and supportive.
My biggest peeve was the runner who was the “sweeper” was pacing the 3:00 group. The race had a cut off of 3:30. At 3:00, you are not the sweeper and it felt a bit defeating having her pass by. Sweepers are helpful to those of us in the back and help us gauge how off we are. It’s a visual support of what kind of push we need to do. Having her be so off was really unhelpful. People who aren’t in the back clearly don’t understand this and it shows.
There were a decent number of people who were not finished at the allotted time. They did leave the course open for us, which is always deeply appreciated. The woman giving out medals walked away and the table with the medals for those of us coming in late was away from the the finish. I had some friends who came in to see the race and my running friend, who had finished the race and had asked if she could take my medal to the finals to give to me as I crossed. The woman with the medals was very rude and told her to put down the medal. I can understand saying no, but to be so rude, was completely unnecessary.
The winery staff were very nice but the racing company needs work on their customer service. I wouldn’t really consider this race back of the pack friendly aside from them extending the time for us. The medal was sturdy but nothing overly special, and mine was ripping within a hour. The shirt they gave was nice. The after party did offer a wine glass and a free glass of wine which is nice.
My advice, skip this one. NJ probably has better.

Photo and Post Credit Tiffany Kehoe

Published by Maniacs Fanatics Madness

This is the blog site for the Marathon Maniacs, Half Fanatics and Ultra Madness running clubs

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