RunWild turnout on record pace
Fourth annual Leading Edge RunWild on May 4 expected to surpass 1,850 runners and walkers
By: Jeff Hansen
| Posted: Wednesday, Apr 23, 2014 06:00 am
The fourth annual Leading Edge RunWild in St. Albert is on pace to break last year’s turnout of 1,850 runners and walkers.
So far 1,754 males and females of all ages had registered online through www.runwild.ca for the May 4 event.
The deadline is Wednesday at midnight to secure a spot in the 42.2-kilometre marathon, 21.1K half-marathon run/walk, 10K run/walk, 5K run/walk and the WildOnes Kids MaraFun for six- to 12-year-olds.
“We will surpass last year’s numbers for sure,” predicted Anita Cassidy, race director for St. Albert’s largest athletic competition on the sports calendar.
“We’re really excited to be able to do this. We can’t believe that it’s in our fourth year and that it’s been so successful. We continue to get more and more runners every year so our numbers are up and we have lots of support raising the money for our two local charities, the Child Protection Centre and the St. Albert 50+ Club.”
The RunWild, hosted by Leading Edge Physiotherapy, is basically a big party for participants and spectators.
“That’s sort of our business culture at Leading Edge. We have fun doing our work and it makes it not a job anymore and that’s what we’ve put into putting on this event,” Cassidy said.
“We’re just excited to be able to offer a community event that can include everyone – families, runners and walkers. People can come out and enjoy our (event) village. We again have live entertainment on stage at Lions Park. We have a beer garden, a kids’ fun zone with a bouncy castle and petting zoo so all those things get people out and active in the community and get involved. Hopefully it’s spring too and everyone will come out and enjoy the nice weather.”
The RunWild start times in front of St. Albert Place are 7 a.m. for the marathon, 7:05 a.m. for the half-marathon run/walk, 7:20 a.m. for the 10K run/walk and 7:30 a.m. for the 5K run/walk.
The finish area is located on Taché Street.
The Marafun goes at noon from the event stage in Lions Park.
It’s status quo for the various race routes.
“We’re hoping Mother Nature is going to be gentle and not flood the Sturgeon River so we can use our non-flood routes. It would make it less logistically exhausting because we have less course marshals and less traffic control and we can use the underpasses under the three bridges,” Cassidy said.
“So far it looks good. I think two of our three years we’ve been flooded so we’re hoping that this will be a non-flood year and we can use our original routes. It’s better for the runners, better for our course marshals and water stations, it’s prettier and people can really experience St. Albert and the trail system.”
Cassidy pegged the number of RunWild volunteers at 450, which is 124 more than the number of runners who finished the recent 29th annual St. Albert 10-Mile Road Race.
Volunteers are still needed and to sign up visit www.runwild.ca.
FAST TRACKS: The marathon total of 75 runners includes Marc Meunier of St. Albert, the 2013 runner-up at 2:48:26 in the 14th marathon of his career.
The Paul Kane High School athletic director was favoured to three-peat last year after posting winning times of 2:58:21 in 2011 and 2:49:15 in 2012, but Caine Warburton, a vacationing 25-year-old ultra marathoner from Mudgeerabe on the Gold Coast of Australia, was the runaway winner at 2:44:10 to knock off the hometown favourite.
Last year 102 runners finished the marathon, including 42 females.