Weekly Back Cove Race Series bannerThe Weekly Back Cove Race Series has begun, and is back and better than ever. The series works much in the same way that it has in years past, with a 5 kilometer race every Wednesday evening along the Back Cove path in Portland, Maine at 6:00. The races will run for 19 weeks between May 14th, 2008 and September 10th, 2008. The race is free of charge, and you only need to register for the first race of the year that you run. Remember to keep your bib number, though, as you will use the same one every week.

Your top 6 times from the 19 week series will be added together to get a cumulative time, with the best male and female runner winning free shoes for a year from Mizuno. There will also be a new award this year, the Maine Track Club Running Community Spirit award for the individual(s) who best represent the community spirit of the Back Cove race series.

The website has a brand new face this year, which you can see by visiting:

Each week the latest results will be displayed on the website, and as the series goes on there will be new features added in to let you see exactly what is happening with all of your favorite runners. There is also a race map now available, which you can view at:

Here is a copy of the map with the mile markers shown:

Much like last year, the weather was absolutely beautiful for the first week of the race. Unlike last year, however, there were more than twice as many runners finishing the race! Last year’s first week total only came to 54 runners, but 109 people crossed the line this week. The average number of people to cross the line last year was only 79 runners, and there were only 3 weeks where there were more than 100 runners, so this year looks like it is going to be another record breaking year for the series.

In a repeat showing of last year, Dan Franek set the mark early with a win in tonight’s race with a time of 17:21. Katie Davisson was the first woman to finish this year with a time 19:44.

I hope that you can make it out there this year at least once, if not the 6 times necessary to score in the grand prix. For myself, I hope to make it each week. For the past 2 years I have made it to all of the races except for 1 each year, first because I was on my honeymoon and then because I was at a conference in Texas.

(Photo Credit: Don Penta)