Race Report Guidelines

You skied the Birkie. You told all your friends about it. Why not tell the world on BirkieGuide.com?

Well, why not? Because you send me a PDF with embedded images. Or a Word Doc with weird alignments. Newsflash! Every race report sent to me gets parsed manually to HTML and then posted. So if you send me a PDF and it has weird line breaks, I have to remove those by hand. Which means your race report doesn’t get posted, and the world doesn’t find out about how you totally smoked that dude in the feed at OO.

So please, send me your race reports, but please do so with the following in mind, with the overarching goal of making it as easy as possible for me to take your report from email to the web:

  • Please send me text with as little formatting as possible. I have to get it Internet-ready, so a PDF with in-line photos really doesn’t work. Sending the text in a plain word doc or the body of the email is best. I’m drawing the line this year. If I have to pull out carriage returns and such, I’m not posting it. Sorry.
  • I’ll post photos, but please send them as separate attachments.
  • Proofread! Please proofread. I have to proofread, and if there are fifteen spelling mistakes on the first page I might give up.
  • Consult a style guide. Use em dashes (—) and elipses (…) not double hyphens (–) and treble periods (…). And single spaces after punctuation. I’m amazed that is still a thing.
  • Keep it clean, and not ad hominem. If you want to call out a person who didn’t let you pass on a hill at 20k, don’t mention their number or name, unless it’s a buddy of yours.
Note that we are looking a the possibility of setting up a blog-type interface where you can input your Birkie story (and anything else under the sun or moon), but haven’t yet figured out if this install of WordPress supports that. For now, please email stories to ari.ofsevit @ gmail. And I promise we’ll get them up faster than last year.

New things on the site

A few new things to note:

  1. New race reports. Check them out. And keep them coming!
  2. New Birkie Trail Subway-style Map. Yes, I am that much of a nerd.
  3. A post about the 100k day I skied on the Birkie trail a few years back. The weather should be just about right for something like that this year if the grooming holds.
Results: coming. Don’t hold your breath; once I have the data it takes a few days to get it in to a usable format.

More race reports

Our race report section is rapidly growing. We have five race reports so far (and want to add more) from a variety of skiers, with some great stories. There’s Shawn, the first ever blind woman to ski the Birkie, and her guide, veteran Birkie Trail skier Jesse. Then there’s Nick, who dropped 60 pounds and quit smoking in pursuit of a Main Street finish. And Rob, a triathlete who skied most of his first Birkie with a full-on snapped ski. Oh, and if you really want, you can read my race report as well.

2013 Race Report is up

Want to read 4500 words about my race? It’s right here! Links and pictures will be added in coming days.

New this year: race reports from other people. If you want to send me a race report, I’ll post it. Just send it to ari.ofsevit at gmail and I’ll post it in the Race Report area of the site. A couple of guidelines:

  • Write something unique. If you write a couple paragraphs with the gist of “I went to Cable, the snow was soft, I skied to Hayward, I had a beer” it’s not telling us anything new.
  • Tell a story. 10,000 people skied the Birkie. There were 20 wave starts, two techniques, 88k of trails and about 15 bars at the finish. What happened to you?
  • Write at least a few paragraphs. It’s a 50k race and took you at least 2:09 to finish. Tell us about hills, feeds, race tactics, scenery, volunteers, mishaps, adversity overcome. Tell us something funny. Make it long enough that we want to read it.
  • Write it in paragraphs. Meaning—don’t just send a blurb of sentences run together.
I’m looking forward to reading about everyone’s experience!