Drake Relays upgrading


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Drake Relays upgrading

Postby Mighty Favog » Wed Nov 28, 2012 12:23 pm

Just announced that Hy-Vee is putting some big bucks into the Drake Relays.
http://www.desmoinesregister.com/viewar ... -sponsor...
...more than half a million dollars in purse money for a field that currently features 16 medalists from the 2012 London Olympic Games and a world record holder ... Those Olympians and professional athletes will compete in ‘London Rematches’ for a $50,000 purse in the running events and a $25,000 purse in the field events.
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Re: Drake Relays upgrading

Postby MightyBurner » Wed Nov 28, 2012 12:55 pm

And it still won't be anywhere near as cool as Penn.
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Re: Drake Relays upgrading

Postby Daisy » Wed Nov 28, 2012 1:38 pm

MightyBurner wrote:And it still won't be anywhere near as cool as Penn.

Who cares, I can drives to Des Moines. :)
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Re: Drake Relays upgrading

Postby Walt Murphy » Wed Nov 28, 2012 7:02 pm

Daisy wrote:
MightyBurner wrote:And it still won't be anywhere near as cool as Penn.

Who cares, I can drives to Des Moines. :)


One of the great disappointments of my very long career of T&F watching is that I've never been to Drake, which is always on the same weekend as Penn. As great as Drake is, any true T&F fan owes it to themself to see Penn once in their lifetime. The "Penns" are not for everyone, but most people get hooked after their first taste of the greatest weekend on the calendar--bar none.
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Re: Drake Relays upgrading

Postby Dogfan » Wed Nov 28, 2012 7:54 pm

MightyBurner wrote:And it still won't be anywhere near as cool as Penn.


Let's cancel all spring meets and just have the Penn Relays. :roll:
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Re: Drake Relays upgrading

Postby lonewolf » Wed Nov 28, 2012 8:27 pm

I've been to/worked both Penn and Drake.
Penn wins on "coolness"/unique venue/ambiance/fun.
Drake wins on meet structure/officiating/facility/convenience/weather(sometimes).
Just one man's opinion.
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Re: Drake Relays upgrading

Postby ExCoastRanger » Wed Nov 28, 2012 9:12 pm

Maybe this has less to do with Penn and more to do with Eugene.
Perhaps a bit of profile-raising with eyes looking long-term at a possible bid for the Trials?
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Re: Drake Relays upgrading

Postby decafan » Wed Nov 28, 2012 9:52 pm

I have competed at Drake and coached athletes at both. For me, bigger isn't better. My heart is with Drake. The people and fans are second to none.
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Re: Drake Relays upgrading

Postby Walt Murphy » Thu Nov 29, 2012 4:14 am

decafan wrote:I have competed at Drake and coached athletes at both. For me, bigger isn't better. My heart is with Drake. The people and fans are second to none.


They're both great meets--just a shame they're always on the same weekend.
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Re: Drake Relays upgrading

Postby Mighty Favog » Thu Nov 29, 2012 8:50 am

ExCoastRanger wrote:Maybe this has less to do with Penn and more to do with Eugene.
Perhaps a bit of profile-raising with eyes looking long-term at a possible bid for the Trials?
My thoughts exactly.

While Eugene is "Disneyland for track fans", as a college teammate put it, I think it's important to have the Trials move around for one extremely important reason: as of right now, it's the only major meet that cities are willing to work at getting. No NCAA or USA championship has been anywhere but Eugene or Des Moines for quite a while. Give Des Moines a chance and they'll try something like the above. Don't give them a chance and no NCAA or USA meet will ever be anywhere but Eugene.
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Re: Drake Relays upgrading

Postby Conor Dary » Thu Nov 29, 2012 9:14 am

Mighty Favog wrote:
ExCoastRanger wrote:Maybe this has less to do with Penn and more to do with Eugene.
Perhaps a bit of profile-raising with eyes looking long-term at a possible bid for the Trials?
My thoughts exactly.

While Eugene is "Disneyland for track fans", as a college teammate put it, I think it's important to have the Trials move around for one extremely important reason: as of right now, it's the only major meet that cities are willing to work at getting. No NCAA or USA championship has been anywhere but Eugene or Des Moines for quite a while. Give Des Moines a chance and they'll try something like the above. Don't give them a chance and no NCAA or USA meet will ever be anywhere but Eugene.


As for moving the Trials around, there first has to be some sorting out of what the Trials will be. The present schedule, with 2 minutes of track on one of the days? Or a 2 weekend affair, like gh has advocated? That probably would work in Eugene. But in Des Moines, or anywhere outside of California? I don't think so.
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Re: Drake Relays upgrading

Postby TxHottrack » Thu Nov 29, 2012 2:36 pm

Dogfan wrote:
MightyBurner wrote:And it still won't be anywhere near as cool as Penn.


Let's cancel all spring meets and just have the Penn Relays. :roll:



No way! I see you never experienced Texas Relays.
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Re: Drake Relays upgrading

Postby Dogfan » Thu Nov 29, 2012 3:30 pm

TxHottrack wrote:
Dogfan wrote:
MightyBurner wrote:And it still won't be anywhere near as cool as Penn.


Let's cancel all spring meets and just have the Penn Relays. :roll:



No way! I see you never experienced Texas Relays.


Note sarcastic rolling eyes emoticon.
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Re: Drake Relays upgrading

Postby Mighty Favog » Thu Nov 29, 2012 7:30 pm

Conor Dary wrote:
Mighty Favog wrote:
ExCoastRanger wrote:Maybe this has less to do with Penn and more to do with Eugene.
Perhaps a bit of profile-raising with eyes looking long-term at a possible bid for the Trials?
My thoughts exactly.

While Eugene is "Disneyland for track fans", as a college teammate put it, I think it's important to have the Trials move around for one extremely important reason: as of right now, it's the only major meet that cities are willing to work at getting. No NCAA or USA championship has been anywhere but Eugene or Des Moines for quite a while. Give Des Moines a chance and they'll try something like the above. Don't give them a chance and no NCAA or USA meet will ever be anywhere but Eugene.


As for moving the Trials around, there first has to be some sorting out of what the Trials will be. The present schedule, with 2 minutes of track on one of the days? Or a 2 weekend affair, like gh has advocated? That probably would work in Eugene. But in Des Moines, or anywhere outside of California? I don't think so.
The same Trials format has been in place since 1972 and has sold plenty of tickets in Georgia, Louisiana, and Indiana. My biggest concern about Des Moines as a host is that Drake Stadium does not have sufficient seating capacity.
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Re: Drake Relays upgrading

Postby Conor Dary » Fri Nov 30, 2012 8:04 am

Mighty Favog wrote: The same Trials format has been in place since 1972 and has sold plenty of tickets in Georgia, Louisiana, and Indiana. My biggest concern about Des Moines as a host is that Drake Stadium does not have sufficient seating capacity.


Ah, yes, New Orleans, that hot bed of track, where tickets were such big sellers that we showed up in town without any and had no trouble getting great seats, including being on the finish line, for less than half price. And those were the days when the meet could justify 10 days. Something even gh has acknowledged isn't true anymore.

Have the meet in Des Moines. Fine. But it would have to be 5 or 6 straight days, concluding on Sunday. But if you want the 2 weekend affair, I don't see how it could be anywhere else than Hayward. 4 or 5 days off in the middle of Iowa? Ugh.
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Re: Drake Relays upgrading

Postby j-a-m » Fri Nov 30, 2012 8:13 am

Conor Dary wrote:4 or 5 days off in the middle of Iowa?

At least in Iowa it's not a crime to fill your own tank at a gas station ...
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Re: Drake Relays upgrading

Postby kuha » Fri Nov 30, 2012 8:13 am

Mighty Favog wrote:The same Trials format has been in place since 1972 and has sold plenty of tickets in Georgia, Louisiana, and Indiana.


Were you actually in New Orleans?? I was there and consider your statement completely untrue. I was also in Indy and recall quite a few open seats.
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Re: Drake Relays upgrading

Postby Conor Dary » Fri Nov 30, 2012 8:39 am

j-a-m wrote:
Conor Dary wrote:4 or 5 days off in the middle of Iowa?

At least in Iowa it's not a crime to fill your own tank at a gas station ...


Yes, the prisons in Oregon are filled because of this law. In fact the FBI has fake gas stations with no attendants spread around the state just to catch those evil self-pumpers.
Last edited by Conor Dary on Fri Nov 30, 2012 9:35 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Drake Relays upgrading

Postby gm » Fri Nov 30, 2012 8:42 am

If you can't find something to occupy your time in Des Moines during the breaks, you're just not trying. Don't try and paint Eugene as a Northwest Disneyland, Conor. :lol:
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Re: Drake Relays upgrading

Postby Conor Dary » Fri Nov 30, 2012 8:50 am

gm wrote:If you can't find something to occupy your time in Des Moines during the breaks, you're just not trying. Don't try and paint Eugene as a Northwest Disneyland, Conor. :lol:


Disneyland! Anyways, there is plenty of places to go outside of Eugene, that justify a week off.

But Des Moines? A week with nothing to do? Hey, have you heard about the new cornfield up north? We could drive out to Council Bluffs! Or Davenport! Oh the excitement!!

Of course, gh could bring his Ring bluray and listen to it over and over during that week.
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Re: Drake Relays upgrading

Postby gh » Fri Nov 30, 2012 9:29 am

All I care about in the diversion department is food!

And I think DM probably has the edge in that department.
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Re: Drake Relays upgrading

Postby gm » Fri Nov 30, 2012 10:30 am

Here ya go, buddy: http://www.catchdesmoines.com/things-to ... ng-summer/

And as GH intimated, the food edge DEFINITELY goes to Des Moines.
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Re: Drake Relays upgrading

Postby Mighty Favog » Fri Nov 30, 2012 10:36 am

I was basing my statements on attendance numbers published in TFN, not personal knowledge, so excuse me if I was off. Reported numbers and real numbers don't always line up. Peak attendance reported for all of those save Indy were less than Drake Stadium's capacity, and Indy had several sellouts at 13,000 or so.

I'm with gh. If I'm not at the stadium, sleeping, or at the bar, it's wasted time.
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Re: Drake Relays upgrading

Postby Conor Dary » Fri Nov 30, 2012 10:41 am

So those who aren't being paid to go are going to spend 5 nights lodging so they can eat and drink waiting for the meet to continue? Sort of like having the first half of the Super Bowl one weekend in Indianapolis and expect the fans to sit around eating and drinking for a week to do the second half the next weekend. That may work in Eugene where there is at least a fan base, but Des Moines?

Sounds like a marketing nightmare.
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Re: Drake Relays upgrading

Postby MightyBurner » Fri Nov 30, 2012 7:03 pm

Dogfan wrote:
MightyBurner wrote:And it still won't be anywhere near as cool as Penn.


Let's cancel all spring meets and just have the Penn Relays. :roll:

Or just move it to a different weekend?

It's not good for the sport to have the big stars at two different meets when there are a limited number of them in the United States.
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Re: Drake Relays upgrading

Postby Dogfan » Sat Dec 01, 2012 5:51 am

Conor has a valid point. Weak, but valid. Outside of a very large city, an ocean, or a mountain, 4-5 days with 'nothing to do' is a challenge. A small challenge. Inform yourself, focus on interests you have other than track and field and see what's around. Use next summer's USATF World Trials as a test. Don't let blind geographical stereotypes ruin what could be a great experience for you.

And, even with never having been to Eugene, Des Moines will win the food fight. Last summer, sister-in-law and some of her friends from Chicago came to the Des Moines Art Festival(Yes, art festival. 250,000 attendees over 3 days.) and laughed their way from great restaurant to great restaurant marveling at the food. And the 'low' prices.
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Re: Drake Relays upgrading

Postby Dogfan » Sat Dec 01, 2012 5:54 am

MightyBurner wrote:
Dogfan wrote:
MightyBurner wrote:And it still won't be anywhere near as cool as Penn.


Let's cancel all spring meets and just have the Penn Relays. :roll:

Or just move it to a different weekend?

It's not good for the sport to have the big stars at two different meets when there are a limited number of them in the United States.



Which 'it' would you move? And to which weekend? How would it work with NCAA meet? This year, the Big 12's are staying home due to their conference meet is the next weekend. The weekend prior is Oregon and Kansas, and probably other events. We're stuck and need to make the best of it.
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Re: Drake Relays upgrading

Postby gh » Sat Dec 01, 2012 6:34 am

dogfan would know way better than I, but as I understand the situation, the Relays is only one part of a huge alumni weekend celebration. They're inextricably linked and the meet has sold out (in large part because of the alumni presence?) for decades now. So because some fan with no ties to the school wants it not to coincide with Penn they should change their date? That whole concept is a non-starter.
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Re: Drake Relays upgrading

Postby Conor Dary » Sat Dec 01, 2012 7:39 am

Dogfan wrote:Conor has a valid point. Weak, but valid. Outside of a very large city, an ocean, or a mountain, 4-5 days with 'nothing to do' is a challenge.


We definitely have 2 subthreads going here. Drake and Penn have been the same weekend for decades and neither seems to really suffer. So why would they change now.

As for whether Des Moines is enchanting enough for everyone, the 2 weekend Trials seems odder the more I think of it. 3 days of track and then take 5 days off and then 3 more days? Has any event ever been staged that way? It might work once, but in the long term how many people would really put up with paying for 5 nights when really nothing is going on.

The present Trials sounds more appealing than that, even with days that have 2 minutes of track.
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Re: Drake Relays upgrading

Postby lonewolf » Sat Dec 01, 2012 11:20 am

Nix to the 3-5-3. 4-2-4 is bad enough.. 3-2-3 would be better.
Drake and Penn have survived on the same weekend forever. Leave it alone.
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Re: Drake Relays upgrading

Postby Conor Dary » Sat Dec 01, 2012 12:31 pm

lonewolf wrote:Nix to the 3-5-3. 4-2-4 is bad enough.. 3-2-3 would be better.
Drake and Penn have survived on the same weekend forever. Leave it alone.


The point of the 3-5-3 is to have 2 weekends of TV. So why not start the meet on Friday, go 3 days with live TV on the weekend. Then take a couple of days off and then 3 days and show the rest of the meet on tape on the weekend. A nice 3-2-3 combo as lw says.

As for Drake I have been to a few times. A wonderful weekend.
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Re: Drake Relays upgrading

Postby Dogfan » Sat Dec 01, 2012 3:12 pm

gh wrote:dogfan would know way better than I, but as I understand the situation, the Relays is only one part of a huge alumni weekend celebration. They're inextricably linked and the meet has sold out (in large part because of the alumni presence?) for decades now. So because some fan with no ties to the school wants it not to coincide with Penn they should change their date? That whole concept is a non-starter.


Agree the idea that Drake or Penn would move is a non-starter, why assume that if there is a move, it's Drake that should move? Anyway, thousands of Drake alumni return to Des Moines for Relays weekend. Many buy tickets to the event, though it's probably a smaller percentage than we think it is. Relays is homecoming and much more for the university and much more than that for the greater DSM area. It is the first festival of the year and people and businesses look to the Relays as the start of the outdoor season in Central Iowa. Campus and community events start the Saturday before and continue all week. I've asked Drake grads about attending the Relays while a student at Drake, most smile and say: 'There's an athletic event that weekend? :shock:
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