We spoke to Hood to Coast Race Series Chief Operating Officer Dan Floyd at the Seaside beach Saturday, as nearby, runners and walkers crossed the finish at the Hood to Coast Relay and Portland to Coast.
Q: What’s going on so far?
Dan Floyd: Eight-thirty in the morning in Seaside means top men’s, women’s, and mixed teams for the walk, run and the high school championship are all coming in right about this time.
The top high school team (Oregon Road Runners) came in within the last hour. They had a really dominant run. The top men’s (Bowerman Track Club) has already come in on the Hood to Coast side. The top women’s will come in around 10 a.m.
Q: When did runners start?
Floyd: Runners go from 5 a.m. to 2 p.m. Friday at Timberline Lodge. The last wave has about 40 teams in it. Waves go every 15 minutes. People catch up, pass, and they’re long gone.
Q: How are the speeds this year?
Floyd: Speeds haven’t gotten faster. They’re a little bit slower overall. That’s good for us because it’s become less competitive of a race and more of an experience, something that people want to do with their family and friends.
Q: Is the terrain rougher than in past years?
Floyd: No, the terrain’s the same. It’s appealing to the everyday person, the everyday runner. You don’t have to be a super athlete to run Hood to Coast.
Q: Tell me about the number of people expected.
Floyd: There will be 19,000 runners and walkers and another 3,000 volunteers. At this beach party, it’s so hard to guess we should get anywhere between 40,000 and 60,000 participants counting, participants, spectators, family, friends.
Q: How is it going with the local community?
Floyd: The relationship with Seaside has been great. Mayor Jay Barber will be down here later. The Seaside Chamber’s been good, the police have been great, the interaction is awesome. They’re supportive of us and we respond when they call.
Q: I see a big presence here from Providence. Where do charitable funds go?
Floyd: The Providence Cancer Institute will receive a little over $900,000. It stays within our state.
Q: When do you break it all down here on the beach?
Floyd: We break down tonight at about 11. On Sunday and Monday it’s high speed to get everything out of there. It takes a week to set up, two days to tear down.