Posted: Jul 7, 2012 9:32 AM by Derek Buerkle - KPAX Sports
Updated: Jul 7, 2012 9:18 AM
MISSOULA- It's time to take a long run once again with the sixth annual Missoula Marathon right around the corner. About 5,000 runners will gather at the starting line in either Frenchtown for the full 26.2 mile race, or at Alpine Physical Therapy for the half-marathon on Sunday.
Elliot Welder of Kalispell and Katherine Georger of Boise won last year's marathons. But in the history of the event, four of the eight individual champs called the Garden City home. One announcer who has helped with every Missoula Marathon expects the locals to push the pace on Sunday.
"The local talent pool is fantastic, both in the marathon and the half marathon, even in the 5K. Missoula in the last few years has really developed a fantastic running community from top to bottom. The front end is super-competitive, but then as you get through the pack all the way down to the walkers, it's just been growing exponentially in the last ten years as a running community," Tony Banovich observed.
The marathon starts at 6:00 a.m. on Sunday and there's also a kids marathon Saturday at 10 a.m. The Marathon Expo in Caras Park on Saturday will give competitors a chance to mingle and prepare for Sunday's big race.