Race Review: Fort2Base 10 Nautical Mile Race

The Fort2Base 10 Nautical mile race was held on August 25, 2019.  It is held just north of Chicago.  The race starts at Fort Sheridan and finishes at the Great Lakes Naval Base.  The race is unique because of the race distance of 10 Nautical miles which is roughly 11.5 miles. This is the second year in a row that I have ran this race.

The race is always held on Sunday morning at the end of the month of August.  There are a few packet pickup options, including a few different days in the Chicago area for you to pick up your bib and shirt. If none of these days and times work out, you can have it waiting for you at the host hotel if you are staying at it the night before the race, or you can have it waiting for you the morning of the race for a fee.  We had ours waiting for us at the host hotel with no issues.

Race Day

With the race being a point to point course and the start being on a Army base and the finish being at a naval base, parking is a big issue.  The solution to this issue is to have all parking done at a local college.  You are then bused to the start and also bused back to the parking after you finished.

We hopped on the first bus that we could from the parking lot and made our way to the start.  It was highly encouraged that you get to the start as soon as possible.  in 2018, the race started late because runners did not take that advice and the rest of the runners were stuck waiting for everyone else to get there.  This year, while I think the race did start a little late, it wasn’t as bad.

Prior to the race, there were Army Hummers for you to get your pictures taken in front of, member of the military speaking, and the national anthem.  The race started with the firing of the gun and we were off.  The course did change a little this year.  Last year, the race started with a loop around the housing for the families stationed at Fort Sheridan.  This year, we just started off by heading North towards the base and eliminating that loop.  The course did however, did go around the actual fort once again and around the parade grounds which is in my opinion the best part of the course.  You even pass General Patton’s home on the course.

The course remains mostly flat and along a bike path until the last couple of miles of the course.  Once you get near the naval base, you get off the bike paths and run on some town streets which have a few hills to them.  This was a change to this years course.  Last years course ran more along the Naval Base, where this year did some but not for as long of a stretch.  The last mile and a half is a real test with the hills.

The finish line was located in Foss park for the second year in a row.  It is a very nice location for the race to finish with a large area for runners to gather after the race and celebrate.  This also offers a nice down hill finish for roughly the last quarter mile.

Course amenities

Along the course there were many aid stations offering water and Gatorade.  The volunteers were very helpful and full of energy. Also at the aid stations were port-o-potties  There was also volunteers/police at every intersection that we came to, making sure that all runners were safe throughout the race.

Finishers Medals and T-shirts

Every runner that finished received a finishers medal.  This was the second year of a 3 year medal series.  Next year will complete the series and I intend on being back to get my last piece.

Also this years race shirt was awesome.  This is the first race shirt of 2019 that I actually love and have worn it often since running the race.  The fit and quality of the shirt is great!

My Race

I ran a much slower time this year than I did last year.  This year I ran a 1:20:55 but still manages to place 12th overall and 2nd in my age division.  This year they gave out trophies to the top 3 in each age division.  It really wasn’t a generic trophy but rather looked like a trophy that they put some thought into and made sure that the race logo, along with logo of each of the branches of the military was prominent on it.

 

As mentioned earlier, I intend on being back to run the 2020 Fort2Base 10 Nautical Mile race and would encourage everyone else to run as well.  Even if you did not participate in the last 2 years, it is still a great event and the finishers medals are great even as a stand alone medal.  The race director does a great job of putting this race on and has the runners best interest in mind.  She really works hard to put on a great race.

 

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