Skip to main content

We've been discussing mapping options for a while now, and many map examples have been referenced. The vast majority have had split location descriptions on the map page.

In the Course Measurement and Certification Procedures Manual, on p. 27, first paragraph, the stated purpose of a map "is to provide, ideally on a single sheet of paper, all the information a race director needs to run the race using the course as certified". On p. 28, it then says (3rd paragraph) "...prepare a separate list of split descriptions".

While most split locations are not certified, they are close to within a meter. And, since they are used on race day, are they not also very important to the race director? Why are we encouraging measurers to put splits on a separate page?

I propose changing the manual to indicate that, ideally, splits should be listed on the map page, so we can accomplish our goal of posting a single page for a course. Multiple pages can get lost when someone is trying to set out the course for the race. Most mappers are able to put the splits on the map page, even long races. Why encourage multiple pages, when multiple pages are inefficient, and a single page is feasible in nearly every situation? (Plenty of marathon courses have all the splits listed on the map page.)
Original Post

Replies sorted oldest to newest

OK, I'll speak up as someone who often puts marathon splits on the back side of maps, but I'll always get "key" points on the front-- start, finish, any turnaround points. This could be due to obsessing about showing details on the map via blowups, or about listing enough details for timing points to make the description pretty redundant, or to my medieval clinging to hand drawing and lettering. I mean I see Mark and Gene's point, and I agree that it's better to have it all on one page, but I think something may be lost if we force all those descriptions to be on the same page as the map.
I by no means am a veteran with maybe 9 or 10 courses and a handful of cal courses under my belt. What struck me amongst the other daunting aspects of trying to certify my first race course was trying to show every detail on one page. Without an experienced measurer by my side the first go it seemed pretty off putting. Though the reasons all make sense to me now I envisioned a day when I just submitted a black sheet of paper Confused with all of the detail I was to include!
I do see the end goal of making "all the information a race director needs to run the race using the course as certified" more essential than whether it fits on one page or not with the splits. In this digital age it seems a little silly: one should provide the race director with pictures and descriptions of splits to locate as a supplement with a CD or DVD containing that info. and that has been discussed at length here. I am not on the registrar side of things nad can see the importance of that side too.

What if every map for everything had to fit on 8.5" X 11"? I think races with lots and lots of detail (esp marathon) to indicate would be encouraged to include it better without the restriction of space. I am off my soap box and ready for the slaying that will ensue Smiler. The solution is not simple but that is the kind of discussion I would like to see here and at your conference--the end goal is not simply for it to fit on one page. I feel a one page map and a digital set of details included as a file download would be pretty cool.
Bob & Matt, I was not intending that every map must have all info on one page, but that we should encourage the inclusions on one page.

Bob, your maps look good, and I see why you have difficulty fitting all information on one page. For marathons, I know we sometimes have to make exceptions. But for shorter courses, it is normally possible, even when hand-drawn, to fit all info on one page.

On the other hand, if a hand-drawn map is scanned, then reduced in size a bit, that allows the artist to create the map and put notes on at a comfortable size, then shrink the image to allow for more information to be put on the page. Just a thought.

Before anyone measures their first course, they should look at other maps on the USATF site to see how different people accomplished the end result. That in itself makes it easier to plan your own first map. Many ways to do it, so each person has to choose their own preference.

As more people have digital capabilities, it may become easier for more marathon maps to fit entirely on one page. Until then, one of the big advantages of using the png file format is that multiple pages can show on the USATF site as one image. The downside is that only someone who knows they are actually 3 separate images may download all 3 pages. Bob's DC07003RT map can be downloaded in 3 parts to see the entire package. However, that also means the Registrar must create 3 files, and name them properly, to have them all available. More work for the Registrar.

Finally, Matt, while I do take pictures of each split, Start, and Finish, that is more than many measurers want to do. To have that as another requirement would discourage many folks. Also, when I measure at night (to avoid traffic), it is hard to see enough background to make the pics worthwhile. And, you don't want to have to go back out during daylight, just to take pictures. It is a nice touch, but I bet many would object to making it a requirement.

Bottom line, I was simply suggesting that we remove the suggestion in the manual that seems to encourage a separate sheet for the split descriptions.
Last edited by duanerussell

Add Reply

Link copied to your clipboard.