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Thu Dec 31, 2009 2:18 pm

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Junior Masters Athlete
Joined: Thu Dec 31, 2009 9:45 am
Posts: 2
Location: Naperville, Il

I've noticed in the masters rankings pages that masters athletes are competing in college invitationals and opens. Does anyone have experience doing this? I am curious about how to go about about doing this (i.e. - do I just show up and enter or do I have to notify the organizer ahead of time.) I'm sure it's different from meet to meet. Also, what type reaction do you get from the other college athletes?

If I want to get any race experience in April or May here in Chicago area that looks like my only option.

Thanks,



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Thu Dec 31, 2009 4:07 pm

 
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Master Masters Athlete
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Joined: Sun Oct 15, 2006 6:03 am
Posts: 113
Location: In the sticks, Western PA

If meet entries are done online, such as a site like DirectAthletics, you can simply check to see if individual athletes are permitted to compete, enter yourself online, show up the day of the meet and pay the entry fee. If you can't find the meet information online, try emailing one of the assistant coaches (or grad assistants - you will have better luck getting a response.) Most non-scoring college meets in PA seem to be happy to accept 20-25 bucks from open and master athletes. Scored meets are a different story.
As far as how the college kids react, most don't say too much but every once in a while I will hear "at least I beat the old guy in my heat" or "I can't believe I lost to that old guy".

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Thu Dec 31, 2009 5:41 pm

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Senior Masters Athlete
Joined: Thu Sep 04, 2008 2:47 pm
Posts: 20
Location: Roseville, CA

Most of the invitationals(around here) at 4 year schools have a minimum qualifying mark to reach in order to enter. Some of those held at jc's do too. Most of the entering information can be found on the team websites.



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Thu Dec 31, 2009 8:32 pm

 
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Master Masters Athlete
Joined: Mon Oct 06, 2008 6:11 am
Posts: 87
Location: Northern Illinois

Like others stated, check the teams' websites for info. Many have entry info that says they accept unattached/open entries. Here's two indoor meets in January in the Chicago-area that do:

http://www.carthage.edu/athleticspages/ ... entry.html

http://grfx.cstv.com/photos/schools/lew ... te1-16.pdf

Since you're in Naperville, keep an eye on North Central's, Wheaton College's and Benedictine's track websites for their outdoor meets. I've competed at both Wheaton and Benedictine the last couple of years. Great meets.

I've also competed at Augustana, Concordia, North Park and Elmhurst College previously, and will try to again this outdoor season.

As far as reactions go, they've always been positive. At one meet (Wheaton), I offered to help officiate the discus throw after my event (hammer throw) was complete. In return, the coach didn't charge me the entry fee and gave me two Wheaton College team T-shirts.

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Fri Jan 01, 2010 10:47 am

 
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Journeyman Masters Athlete
Joined: Mon Jul 02, 2007 8:15 am
Posts: 30
Location: Harvard University

In the Boston area, there are many college meets that accept masters. Most of the signups are on DirectAthletics - it should automatically give the organizers your date of birth, and it asks for a seed time.

I think half the competitions I participate in are mainly targeted at college athletes. As long as your seed time is reasonably accurate, you'll end up in a good heat (i.e. appropriate level of competition to push you). Most of the time it's with other masters, but with a college runner or two.

It's nice to have a lot of these available, so you can pick and choose when to compete.

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Fri Jan 01, 2010 5:16 pm

 
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Journeyman Masters Athlete
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Joined: Thu Sep 07, 2006 4:17 pm
Posts: 39

I use Direct Athletics (http://www.directathletics.com/) and find meets that accept individual athletes. You can limit your search to certain states.

I pole vault and I've found that, at least at the smaller colleges, the other vaulters are very welcoming. Most are quite surprised that an 'old guy' can still do the sport! I've heard several times, "I sure hope I can still vault when I'm your age."

Go for it!

- master



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Sat Jan 02, 2010 7:11 pm

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Senior Masters Athlete
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Joined: Tue Sep 12, 2006 7:55 pm
Posts: 10
Location: Ventura CA

I try to address this in my schedule page, the North American All Comers Meet Directory at http://www.trackinfo.org.track.html This is the hardest part of this project--to find out which meets will accept an outsider and under exactly what circumstances. I've conversed with a lot of coaches, but the vast majority of coaches do not list their contact information so as to avoid contact with potential recruits (its an NCAA violation). In short, coaches are hard to reach--even though they are the gatekeeper or decisionmaker as to who and under what conditions an outsider is allowed into their meets. I have also spoken with a few small college coaches who do not want Masters athletes to enter their meets at the expense of the frail egos of their athletes--in other words they don't want their kids shown up by the old men. Gee, up until a few years ago, I took pride in being able to hang with a few Div. III athletes at small college meets.

If you know of any college meets that will accept outsiders, please let me know, let me know the details, give me a contact to the person in charge of the meet. I'll be happy to list it and hopefully get a few more people to show up. info (at) trackinfo (dot) org



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Tue Jan 05, 2010 12:45 pm

 
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Journeyman Masters Athlete
Joined: Sat Mar 21, 2009 7:29 pm
Posts: 29
Location: Eugene, OR

Andy's website (trackinfo.org) is a great resource. A typical college meet is not an "all comers" meet, however, and many meets require advance entry (usually Direct Athletics as others have mentioned) and then can and do reject entries. My experience with entering college meets has been very positive, perhaps in part because I'm in Oregon. The college coaches have been very open to masters competing, assume of course you are at a similar competitive level to the college athletes. Just check the previous year's results to see if the meet is a good fit for you.



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Thu Jan 07, 2010 8:19 pm

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Master Masters Athlete
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Joined: Thu Sep 07, 2006 2:01 pm
Posts: 250
Location: Chico, CA

I have competed in open meets for years. Meet directors have also been good about letting me throw masters implements. It is a good idea to contact the meet director 3-4 weeks before the meet and ask permission. Untrained masters should start with all-comers meets before entering open and college competitions.

Tom Fahey M62



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Mon Jan 11, 2010 12:55 pm

 
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Senior Masters Athlete
Joined: Fri Sep 08, 2006 1:09 am
Posts: 21
Location: Seattle, WA

There are very few college meets that accept day of meet entries, so make sure to start researching the entry info at least a month in advance. Sometimes the cutoffs for entries are over a week out.

To find a contact email for the track coaches, go to the school's sports website and look for "Staff Directory" or something of the sort. You rarely see the coaches contact info on the track page.

There are a good number of college track meets that will let in masters athletes as long as they don't need any special accommodations. If you want to throw other implements or run lower hurdles, you are best off if you have a relationship with the coaches at that school. If not, make sure to ask very nicely and don't get your hopes too high.

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