Press release from ATRA member Pikes Peak Ascent & Marathon. Salomon Running is also an American Trail Running Association corporate member.
MANITOU SPRINGS – Some of the best mountain runners in the world will take on the 63rd Pikes Peak Marathon on Sunday, Aug. 19, and race organizers believe that’s a great reason to host the new “Marathon Block Party.”
The day-long event begins at 7 a.m. with the start of the historic foot race to Pikes Peak’s summit and back. Then comes a pancake breakfast, a sidewalk sale, plus race awards and the bluegrass jams of the band Woodshed Red in downtown Manitou Springs.
This year – and in 2019 and ’20 – the marathon will be part of the Salomon Golden Trail Series, a new competition that models the best practices in mountain running, including health testing, equal prize money for men and women competitors, and support for the top runners’ favorite charities.
“We really want to celebrate the Pikes Peak Marathon’s roll as a major international mountain race,” says Ron Ilgen, Race Director and President of Pikes Peak Marathon, Inc. “We think the Marathon Block Party will help add to the big-race feel of the event. And we’re looking forward to including the City of Manitou Springs and our local merchants.”
Manitou Ave. through downtown Manitou Springs will be closed for the block party. Parking can be found at Manitou High School, Higginbotham Flats, and at the Pikes Peak Cog Railway/Manitou Incline parking lot. More parking info available at pikespeakmarathon.org.
A big crowd of race fans is expected for the start of the marathon, and then the party begins. The schedule looks like this:
- 7 a.m. Marathon start at the corner of Manitou Ave. and El Paso Blvd.
- 7:30 – 10 a.m. Pancake breakfast ($5, proceeds support local volunteer fire departments,) plus Bloody Mary’s and Mimosas served by Swirl Wine Bar.
- 10 a.m. Sidewalk sale, downtown Manitou. Beer Garden opens.
- 10 – 4 p.m. Street concert including Woodshed Red from 1-4 p.m.
- 10:30 a.m. The first runners return to the finish line in Manitou Springs.
- 1 p.m. Race awards, Top 10 and masters runners.
- 3:30 p.m. Race awards, age groups.
More about the Golden Trail Series: Salomon is creating a visionary model for mountain/trail running competitions by including several of the world’s most famous races in the new series: Spain’s Zegama 42K, the Mount Blanc Marathon in France, Switzerland’s Sierre-Zinal, the Pikes Peak Marathon, and the Ring of Steall in Scotland.
The Top 10 men and women after five races will advance to the “Grand Final,” the Otter Trail in South Africa, where they’ll split about $123,000 in cash prizes while supporting their favorite charities.
Salomon is committed to contributing to doping free sport and is supporting an athlete health policy program to help ensure fair competition and optimum health for runners in the series.
Salomon chose the Pikes Peak Marathon for its difficulty and altitude. No other race in the series climbs to 14,115 feet. It is a unique challenge that tests the physical and mental limits of all runners.
The new series caught the eye of Manitou Springs Mayor Ken Jaray, a longtime competitor in the Pikes Peak races.
“Manitou Springs is really excited to host the Salomon Golden Trail Series as part of Pikes Peak Marathon weekend,” Jaray says. “We are looking forward to welcoming runners from around the world and supporting our many local runners, as well.”
Two former winners, 2017 men’s champion Rémi Bonnet of Switzerland, and Sweden’s Emelie Forsberg (2012) are set to return, as well as top U.S. runners Max King of Oregon, and Colorado’s Sage Canaday and Megan Kimmel.
The 13.32-mile Pikes Peak Ascent will run on Aug. 18.
MANITOU INCLINE CLOSURE: For the fourth consecutive year, the City of Colorado Springs has granted race organizers permission to close the Manitou Incline on race weekend (Aug. 18-19.)