Relay Basic Guidelines

  • The course is divided into 36 legs. At the end of each leg is a runner exchange area. That is where one runner ends and the next runner begins.
  • Runners carry a team wristband and pass that to each other at the exchange points. The wristband takes the place of a baton.
  • Teams with 12 runners run in order through their line-up one through 12 to complete the relay course. After running the first 12 legs, the runners repeat this process and run the second and third groups of 12 legs. Each runner should run 3 legs of the 36 leg course.
  • Let’s focus on the vehicles for a moment. Each team has two vehicles, with 6 runners in each vehicle. The first vehicle with 6 runners covers the first 6 legs. The second vehicle with the other 6 runners covers the next 6 legs. The vehicles will leapfrog along the course alternating covering each group of 6 legs until the team finishes the course. Accordingly, the runners in the first team vehicle cover Legs 1-6, 13-18, and 25-30. Let’s call that vehicle “Van 1.” The runners in the second team vehicle cover Legs 7-12, 19-24, and 31-36. Let’s call that vehicle “Van 2.”
  • At the end of each group of 6 legs is a vehicle exchange area. That is where one group of 6 runners completes running the prior 6 legs and the team’s other runners begin to run the next group of 6 legs.
  • Part of the challenge of a relay like this one is to estimate how long it will take each runner to run his or her leg. Teams need to be at the next runner exchange point when the runner arrives there. In addition, the one team vehicle needs to be at the vehicle exchange point when the other team vehicle arrives there that is carrying the runners who ran the prior six legs.
  • Each team must provide its own supplies to support its runners. Plan to leave room in your team vehicles for these supplies. Do not plan on any aid stations along the course.
Tips To Having A Great Time During The Relay

  • Designate a captain for your team who is a take charge personality and enjoys working with details.
  • Show up mentally and physically prepared to run. You should have trained and prepared for the legs you will be running.
  • Implement a “No Whining” Rule.
  • When running your legs, be properly hydrated. Carry your own water or sports drink. Don’t rely on your team to hydrate you as you run your leg. It may be too late.
  • While running your leg, carry a copy of the map of your leg to give you an extra sense of security for traveling your leg without getting lost.
  • Stretch after you run each of your legs.
  • Don’t run a set of legs that are rated “Most Difficult” or “More Challenging” unless you are a more experienced or talented runner. Don’t be assigned to a slot in the runner line-up that you don’t think you can handle.
  • The runners who are assigned to run the steeper climbs, especially the uphill parts of the “Most Difficult” legs, should not run those parts. Rather, they should “power walk” those parts. That is, they should get in a crouch position and take long strides to get up those hills. This is a tactic used by ultra runners who face steep climbs during their ultra runs. Trying to run the climbs will only deplete you of energy. Don’t let your pride get in the way of your completing the leg in the most effective manner.
  • The runners in Van 2 may want to reserve a room(s) in South Lake Tahoe for Friday night. After finishing Legs 7-12, the runners in Van 2 should drive straight to South Lake Tahoe, check into their room(s), and get a quick nap and/or a shower. NOTE: The faster your team runs, the less time you will have to pull this off. You may have no option but to “rough it.”
  • The runners in Van 1 may want to reserve a room(s) in Carson City for Friday night. After completing Legs 13-18, the runners in Van 1 should drive straight to Carson City, check into their room(s), and get a quick nap and/or a shower. NOTE: The faster your team runs, the less time you will have to pull this off. You may have no option but to “rough it.”
  • Get to the runner and van exchange points far enough in advance of the approaching runner so that you can park the team vehicle in a safe manner and let the next runner have time to get ready to go.
  • Carry extra running gear such as socks and shirts if you tend to sweat a lot.
  • Get to know the other teams. Your experience will be more rewarding if you create friendships with the other teams and cheer on each other as you travel the course.
  • Enjoy the time with your teammates.
  • Be cautious and alert and safe.
  • Appreciate the fact that you are able to be participating in this event. Look out at the vistas. Suck up the fresh air. Gaze up at the stars. Have a blast!
  • Finish as a team. There will be enough time for both Van 1 and Van 2 to drive to the finish area and park. The other eleven of you should be standing at the start of Idlewild Park ready to escort the runner in the No. 12 spot to the finish line.
  • Smile for the team photo after your team has completed the relay.
Below is a checklist of items your team should have on the relay course.

  • 12 runners
  • 2 vehicles
  • minimum of one reflective vest and one working flashlight per vehicle
  • extra batteries for the flashlights
  • blinking runner lights
  • glow sticks
  • one safety sign per vehicle
  • tape for the sign
  • supplies such as water, sports drinks, fruit, bagels and energy bars
  • cell phones
  • list of cell phone numbers of each of the team members, one per vehicle
  • garbage bags
  • Smalls towels and sponges to wet down to cool off hot runners
  • squirt guns
  • cow bells
  • safety pins for running bibs
  • sunscreen
  • toilet paper
  • deodorant
  • some type of watch to keep track of team’s time
  • clipboard
  • pens
  • pillows and blankets
  • aspirin
  • basic first aid kit
  • maps
  • cash
  • credit card
  • spirit of adventure
  • good attitude