|A smile is not an endorsement. Who doesn't smile for photos?|
|Even Napoleon was not impressed. And he's a dog.|
It was a crappy race, but nothing criminal (this time, at least). Sadly, he's not even close to the shadiest person in the race industry I've encountered.
If there's one thing you take away from the article and this post, it's to Google a race before you do it. See what other people are saying. If you're in the area, check out the Chicago Running Bloggers site so you're starting an event with eyes wide open. I was shocked when the article said people paid upward of $150 for this race. If I had paid that much for the Aurora Fox Valley Trail Half, I would have been livid. Since I purchased the race through Groupon, I knew I could get my money back from Groupon if it didn't happen. You don't get that luxury for most races - I lost out on my registration fee when the Last Try Triathlon didn't happen this fall because of the government shut down. These things happen if you race enough.
Deliberately taking money from people with no intention of delivering a service is a crime. Stealing from charities is not just a crime, it's a damn shame and a one-way ticket to hell. I feel terrible for the runners portrayed in the article and hope they weren't discouraged from racing again. There are great, amazing, fulfilling races out there. Don't let one crappy race discourage you from a lifetime of enjoyment, networking, goal setting and achievement.