bobknh Show full post »
ridemagnetic
307Rider wrote:
All of these comments make me wonder what is overwhelming for an entry fee? Director/organizer pays up front over $600 for insurance, $200 or more on marketing/advertising, Bib numbers, trophies, CASH PAYOUTS for men’s & women’s if a good director! We personally pay out $500 for our longest distance finishers. Up front fees for Series pay outs and prizes $250 to enter into the Wyoming Gravel Grinder Series each year. Driving around getting the route prepared before, during & after event all costs fuel and time etc. These are just a few initial costs it takes to set up, tear down, start what have you for a Gravel event SO. I’d say before registrations even open. The smallest event can get easily into $2,000 of just hosting costs Our entry fees for the 136m is $70 55m $50 & $25 for our 25 mile distance for the Coal Country Gravel Grinder So what is your opinion on to much for a race? I personally have yet to go experience DK or many Gravel events for that matter. These Wyoming events are mostly my experience but would love to know in everyone’s thoughts honesty. HOW MUCH IS TO MUCH?


There's no way to pin down how much is too much, everybody has a different answer. Some people are fine paying hundreds of dollars for an event, some stick to the more affordable or free ones.
A great set of wheels will make an average frame ride better. It doesn't work the other way around.  ~ridemagnetic
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Zurichman
307rider

at my end right now $100 is probably my high limit on entry fees. there are some other factors though.  from what i have read the town of emporia hotels jack their rates up on their hotels for the week of that ride because they know they got you. i would pay more for a ride maybe if the local towns didn't jack their hotel rates up. i did that for the olympics twice but i am not going to do that again.


zman
If it was easy it wouldn't be a memory. You just hope you don't have all your memories in the same ride. been there dun that Zman
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bnystrom
Good luck with that, as your expectations are completely unrealistic. Prices are always going to be higher during high-demand times; that's just the nature of the industry. It helps to compensate for all of the empty beds during low-demand periods. If you don't like it, your only recourse is to travel during lower-demand times or find somewhere to camp.

For that matter, name one industry that doesn't take advantage of times when the demand for their product is highest? That's just smart business.

----------

Regarding 307rider's question about entry fees, yours sound pretty reasonable for the lengths of the events and depending on the course and the level of service you provide for that price, I'd probably pay it. Your estimate of initial out-of-pocket costs actually seems quite low to me, so if you can put on any kind of decent event for that, you're doing an amazing job! Having run some other types of events with much larger budgets (~$40,000), I understand what you go through.

None of these events would be possible without amazing volunteers to staff them, who rarely get the recognition they deserve. That's one thing I would say to everyone here, make sure you tell the volunteers at gravel events how much you appreciate their work. You can't imagine how much that means to people to hear that and it helps to ensure that events that you like will still be around.

Look at the bright side, at least you're not on the hook for tens of thousands of dollars if the weather goes south and people don't show up. [wink]
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DerekJ_MI

307Rider wrote:
.... I personally have yet to go experience DK or many Gravel events for that matter. These Wyoming events are mostly my experience but would love to know in everyone’s thoughts honesty. HOW MUCH IS TO MUCH?


I'm fresh back from a successful finish at Dirty Kanza 200.  I offer my perspective.

I was very happy to be able to ride this event and finish it.  I'm not a racer, just a rider.  This event is epic.  It's in a beautiful location like few others and is a wonderful area to ride in.  I really enjoyed my time there last weekend and will never forget it.  This was my second year as last year I did the rider's camp and the DK 100.

This said, it was a poor value.  It cost $200 to enter an event that is unsupported.  You essentially get nothing just to ride public roads (well mostly).  Some simple swag (socks, bar tape, water bottle) when you register and a pint beer glass and a patch when you finish.  DK Promotions collected $300,000 in registration fees alone!  Then add in sponsor fees, bike shop revenues, clothing sales, etc and I'll bet they are pushing north of a half million dollars easy.  Yes there are expenses, insurance, overhead costs, etc., But those costs also apply to the organizers of the Almanzo 100 and that event is FREE!  Go figure.

Having been there the year before I noticed a huge difference.  Last year there was much more free stuff, more swag, more supplier handouts.  This year, not much.  They had/held a Expo.  50 manufacturers were present.  No one was selling anything.  OH you could buy if but only from Gravel City Adventure and Supply.  And the prices were list, no deals.  And it wasn't just DK Promotions.  I felt that just about everything cost more this weekend.  The whole town was in on it.  And why not, if folks are willing to pay.

So, good for them.  It's a free country and they are obviously in it to make a living and that's OK.  One of the DK mottos is "Find your Limit".  I think they are trying to find there limit too, just in a different way!  I will expect the cost for DK to increase next year.  Why not?  The training camp went from $800 in 2017 to $2600 in 2018.  I don't know if they sold the camp out but if they did then raise the price again next year. 

It's often said that You get what you pay for.  But it's also true that you pay what they can get from you.    When I consider the travel distance I had to do from MI to Kansas, the cost of food, lodging, and other expenses, I spent around $1200 to do this event.  There is no regret, I did it freely.  but it's done and so I'll move on.  Lots of free roads to ride out there and lots of other better value events to ride in!



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bobknh
DerekJ_MI wrote:



I'm fresh back from a successful finish at Dirty Kanza 200.  I offer my perspective.

I was very happy to be able to ride this event and finish it.  I'm not a racer, just a rider.  This event is epic.  It's in a beautiful location like few others and is a wonderful area to ride in.  I really enjoyed my time there last weekend and will never forget it.  This was my second year as last year I did the rider's camp and the DK 100.

This said, it was a poor value.  It cost $200 to enter an event that is unsupported.  You essentially get nothing just to ride public roads (well mostly).  Some simple swag (socks, bar tape, water bottle) when you register and a pint beer glass and a patch when you finish.  DK Promotions collected $300,000 in registration fees alone!  Then add in sponsor fees, bike shop revenues, clothing sales, etc and I'll bet they are pushing north of a half million dollars easy.  Yes there are expenses, insurance, overhead costs, etc., But those costs also apply to the organizers of the Almanzo 100 and that event is FREE!  Go figure.

Having been there the year before I noticed a huge difference.  Last year there was much more free stuff, more swag, more supplier handouts.  This year, not much.  They had/held a Expo.  50 manufacturers were present.  No one was selling anything.  OH you could buy if but only from Gravel City Adventure and Supply.  And the prices were list, no deals.  And it wasn't just DK Promotions.  I felt that just about everything cost more this weekend.  The whole town was in on it.  And why not, if folks are willing to pay.

So, good for them.  It's a free country and they are obviously in it to make a living and that's OK.  One of the DK mottos is "Find your Limit".  I think they are trying to find there limit too, just in a different way!  I will expect the cost for DK to increase next year.  Why not?  The training camp went from $800 in 2017 to $2600 in 2018.  I don't know if they sold the camp out but if they did then raise the price again next year. 

It's often said that You get what you pay for.  But it's also true that you pay what they can get from you.    When I consider the travel distance I had to do from MI to Kansas, the cost of food, lodging, and other expenses, I spent around $1200 to do this event.  There is no regret, I did it freely.  but it's done and so I'll move on.  Lots of free roads to ride out there and lots of other better value events to ride in!




Reading your post, and some of the other reports on the DK200 brought back memories of some epic endurance events I've done over the years. I ran most of the Boston Marathon's from about 1973-1980. Your reward for finishing was a certificate with your time and place, and a bowl of watered down beef stew. The entry fees weren't that high; basically, all I had to do was break 3 hours every year to qualify! To me, the experience is everything. I think that when you look back on your first DK 200, years from now, you'll forget about the entry fee, and meager schwag, but you'll never forget the experience.
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Zurichman
bnystrom wrote:
Good luck with that, as your expectations are completely unrealistic. Prices are always going to be higher during high-demand times; that's just the nature of the industry. It helps to compensate for all of the empty beds during low-demand periods. If you don't like it, your only recourse is to travel during lower-demand times or find somewhere to camp.

For that matter, name one industry that doesn't take advantage of times when the demand for their product is highest? That's just smart business.

----------

Regarding 307rider's question about entry fees, yours sound pretty reasonable for the lengths of the events and depending on the course and the level of service you provide for that price, I'd probably pay it. Your estimate of initial out-of-pocket costs actually seems quite low to me, so if you can put on any kind of decent event for that, you're doing an amazing job! Having run some other types of events with much larger budgets (~$40,000), I understand what you go through.

None of these events would be possible without amazing volunteers to staff them, who rarely get the recognition they deserve. That's one thing I would say to everyone here, make sure you tell the volunteers at gravel events how much you appreciate their work. You can't imagine how much that means to people to hear that and it helps to ensure that events that you like will still be around.

Look at the bright side, at least you're not on the hook for tens of thousands of dollars if the weather goes south and people don't show up. [wink]


bnystrom one of the businesses that I know that does that is Ocean City Md. You are going to pay a pretty penny to go there from the beginning of July to just right before Labor Day. With all that being said maybe DK is one of the few gravel bike races that does this sort of thing. I have been to 6 now and none of the town's raised their rates just because their town was having a bike race. Then too DK is on a bigger scale and so they can get away from it. I guess the only way to bring it back to normal is to have riders not go to it but guessing that isn't going to happen. For me so far The Pony Express in Marysville Kansas in Sept. has set the bar for other rides/races for me to compare to. So far none have even come close to the value and fun I had at that race. Free swag the night before at the riders meeting was out of this world and the first mile/last mile was hard road and the rest of the ride was gravel. At my end I am not saying that I will never do the DK200 but there are a heck of a lot other rides/races out there that I will be doing before I even want to try and get in the DK ride/race.

Zman
If it was easy it wouldn't be a memory. You just hope you don't have all your memories in the same ride. been there dun that Zman
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bnystrom
It's all about supply and demand. Most bike races aren't big enough to have a huge impact on the local economy and infrastructure, and many gravel events are "off-season", when hotels are just happy to have "heads in beds". If/when an event gets big enough that it has a major impact on the local economy and local accommodations are completely filled, rates will inevitably go up.

There is a huge variation in value among events. We've done events where travel and accommodations were costly, but the event entry was a bargain. We've also gone to events where the entry fees were higher than was justifiable, but they were day trips with minimal travel and no accommodations required, so the overall cost was reasonable. There have been plenty in-between.

In the end, the only thing that matters is the perceived value and that's up to individual riders to determine for themselves.
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