The Market to Market Relay Nebraska is expanding to 500 teams and 4,000 runners this year, making it the largest day-long running relay in the world.
Registration is now open through an online registration lottery, with 300 teams from last year’s race already pre-registered. A lottery will select an additional 200 teams on May 18th to run the 6th Annual Market to Market Relay rounding out the 500 team field.
“The Market to Market Relay continues to be one of the favorite races of the year for Nebraska runners,” said Ben Cohoon, race director and co-founder. “The local reputation, opportunity to run as a team and outdoor post-race festival have been key to the growth.”
Maureen Larson of Omaha who has run in the event every year since the inaugural race in 2008 added, “Market to Market Relay is absolutely the most fun I have ever had at a race. It is an entire day filled with running, friends, and a spectacular post-race party.”
The annual team running relay from Omaha to Lincoln has sold out every year since its inception. Race organizers are confident that the course can handle the 20 percent expansion and that the race will once again sell out of all 500 teams during the registration lottery.
Each team consists of six to eight runners, with each team member running two or three legs of the Relay from Omaha to Lincoln’s Haymarket.
The 2012 Relay had more than 3,000 runners, who traveled from all over the country to participate providing the state with nearly a ½ million dollar economic impact according to the economic impact analysis conducted by the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.
The Market to Market Relay was founded in 2007 by Cohoon and co-race director Jason Bakewell. The two local Nebraska race directors created a 78 mile course that is a snapshot of Nebraska in one-day. Each team passes a baton from runner to runner along the 20 legs of the race.
The route winds through Omaha, starting at Memorial Park. After the start line the race runs through Elmwood Park, past Aksarben Village, Seymour Smith Park before exiting Omaha near 48th and Cornhusker.
The course continues through small towns and rural landscapes before reaching the finish line at Lincoln's Haymarket.
The 6th Market to Market Relay will be held on Saturday, October 12, 2013.