2015 Soldier Marathon Runners Guide
Soldier Marathon, Soldier Half Marathon, Soldier Relay Marathon, Soldier 5K Race and Soldier Kids Marathon
Saturday, November 7, 2015 at 7:30 a.m. ET.
Registration and Packet Pickup
Register by October 16, 2015 to be guaranteed a finisher’s shirt at race. Last day to mail in registration is Monday, November 2, 2015. Online registration closes Wednesday, November 4, 2015. There are no refunds of the registration fee except for military orders. Deferral to next year’s race is permitted with payment of a $25 administrative fee. Transfers to another race are permitted until October 15, 2015.
Late registration and packet pickup is at the National Infantry Museum, 1775 Legacy Way, Columbus, Georgia near the gates of Ft. Benning on Friday, November 6, 2015 -- 11:00 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. and on Race Day, Saturday, November 7, 2014 -- 6:00 a.m. up to the start time.
Friday night at the National Infantry Museum there is a wonderful pasta dinner available to runners and their families at 6:00 pm to 7:30 pm. The charge is $15 for adults, $25 for two, and $10 for children.
There are several places to park: the parking lot of the National Infantry Museum, the parking lot at Oxbow Meadows across the street from the Museum, the side of S. Lumpkin Road south of the National Infantry Museum, a grass parking lot on S. Lumpkin Road about ½ miles south of the Museum with bus transportation available to the Museum, and Ft. Benning Road south of the Museum.
Parking along S. Lumpkin Road north of the National Infantry Museum is restricted because it’s part of our race course.
Ft. Benning Road and S. Lumpkin Road are the two access roads to the National Infantry Museum. On race day S. Lumpkin Road will be one-way traffic to the Infantry Museum. Ft. Benning Road to the Infantry Museum will close a few minutes before the start of the race. Please arrive early to park and comfortably walk to the start. Plan to arrive early and to walk up to ½ mile to the start line.
Porta-Potties and Restrooms
Porta-potties will be located in front of the National Infantry Museum, behind the Museum near the start line and at each water station on the course. Bathrooms are inside the Museum.
You will pick up your Race Bib with assigned race number at registration. On the back of your Race Bib is a timing chip to record your race time. Also a gear check tag is attached to the bottom of your Race Bib. Please affix your Race Bib to the front of your shirt or shorts either with safety pins we provide you or your personal race belt. You should wear your Race Bib at all times while running the Soldier Marathon race you have registered for. This will allow us to track your finishing time.
A timing chip will be on the back of your bib. The chip is protected by a foam casing. Your start and finish time will be electronically recorded.
Your finishing results will be based on your timing chip, known as your “chip” time. This means that age group awards will be based on your “chip” time rather than your “gun” time. Awards for the overall winner of the race (1st, 2nd and 3rd place) will, however, be based on “gun” time. “Gun” time is measured from the official start of the race whereas “chip” time is measured from the time you actually cross the start line at the beginning of the race and “chip in” and then later cross the finish line and your “chip” registers that you have completed the race.
Fallen Hero Bib
You may run in honor of a Fallen Hero who has died either while serving our country or after serving our country honorably. The Fallen Hero bib will be available at a registration table. There is no charge for the Fallen Hero bib. You may run with more than one Fallen Hero bib if you wish. Please pin the Fallen Hero bib on the front or back of your shirt or shorts.
Dry Clothing Bags
A clear plastic bag will be provided to you at registration. On Race Day Saturday morning please bring the clear plastic bag with you to the race to store your morning clothes in the plastic bag in a secured area located behind the National Infantry Museum for your pickup after the race. A volunteer will tear the gear check bag off your Race Bib and tie the tag to the plastic bag to identify the bag as yours.
Clothing to Run In
Layer your clothing to your comfort. In the cool of the morning you may need to wear a long sleeve shirt, gloves and hat. After running a while you may wish to drop some of your clothing at an aid station on the course, but we do not assure you the return of any clothing after the race.
Start Line/Finish Line
The start line and the finish line for all races (full marathon, half marathon, relay marathon, 5k race and kids one mile fun run) are on Heritage Walk (Avenue of Flags) alongside the National Infantry Museum.
Hand-cycle participants will start a few minutes ahead of the other runners.
Be sure to smile at the Drill Sergeants “encouraging” you up the one major hill on our course at the beginning of mile 3.
Relay Marathon Race
Relay teams start at the same start line as the other runners. A Relay Team may have a minimum of two runners and a maximum of four runners. The relay exchange points are mile 7.5, mile 13.1 and mile 20.2. The first and third legs of the relay are longer while the second and fourth legs of the relay are shorter. The lead runner on the Relay Team will wear a slap bracelet on his/her wrist. At each exchange
point the runner removes the slap bracelet and hands it to the next runner. The last runner receives the slap bracelet and a race bib with a timing chip to get a finishing time. Each runner wears a Race Bib with the same Relay Team number (e.g. 5001A, lB, lC and 1D). The relay exchange points are accessible by car. Transportation for relay team members will not be provided by the Soldier Marathon. Relay exchange point #1 is on S. Lumpkin Road directly beside the National Infantry Museum at the crossing to Oxbow Meadows. Relay exchange points #2 and #3 are on the RiverWalk behind the VFW on Victory Drive. To access Relay exchange points #2 and #3 park at the Victory Drive Overlook on Victory Drive across the street from the Dolly Madison plant near the VFW and walk down the stairs from the parking lot to the RiverWalk.
Please note that the relay team members must provide their own transportation to the relay exchange points. At registration, a representative of the relay team may pick up the registration packet with a bib for each member of the relay team. Each member of the relay team will receive a finisher’s t-shirt and a finisher’s medal.
1. Mile 2.5 Vibbert Ave.
2. Mile 5 Lumpkin Ave.
3. Mile 6.2 Custer Road
4. Mile 8.5 Golf Course
5. Mile 10 Water Works
6. Mile 11.5 Rigdon Park
7. Mile 13.1 VFW RiverWalk
8. Mile 15.5 Trade Center
9. Mile 17.5 TSYS
10. Mile 18.5 Trade Center
11. Mile 20.5 VFW RiverWalk
12. Mile 22 Rigdon Park
13. Mile 24 Water Works Plant
14. Mile 25.5 Golf Course
GU Supplement Nutrition
Gu supplement is available at mile 6.2 (Custer Rd), mile 10 (Water Works), mile 15.5 (Trade Center), and mile 18.5 (Trade Center).
Coca Cola will provide PowerAde at each water station on the course and at the finish line. Callaway Blue will provide water at each water station on the course and at the finish line. B&B Beverage will also provide an energy drink at the finish line.
Timing clocks will be at the start and finish as well as mile 6.2, mile 13.1 and mile 20.
Weather is usually clear and in the 40’s at the start and rises to the 60’s during the day.
Our course has some sections on the RiverWalk that are an out and back. Faster runners will be returning on the RiverWalk at the same time as slower runners are outbound on their race. Please “Stay Right” on the Riverwalk to avoid oncoming runners. We also have hand crank participants.
Both the Soldier Marathon course and the Soldier Half Marathon course are certified. The marathon race is a Boston qualifier. The Full and Half Marathon are also sanctioned by USA Track and Field.
Cut Off Times
There is a time limit of 7 hours to finish the Soldier Marathon and Half Marathon. You should plan to reach mile 15.5 (Aid Station #8 at the Trade Center) by 12:00 pm to reach the finish line at the National Infantry Museum by 3:00 pm and finish within the 7-hour time limit. We will be as flexible as we can to accommodate all finishers.
Each finisher of the Full Marathon, the Half Marathon, the Relay Marathon, the 5K Race and the Kids Marathon will receive a finishing medal that commemorates your completion of your race.
Half Marathon winners will be presented at 11:00 am at the finish line near the statue at the end of the Avenue of Flags. Full Marathon winners will be presented at 12:00 noon at the statue at the end of the Avenue of Flags. Awards will be presented to the top overall finisher, the top three finishers in each age group, male and female, and to the master’s finisher (40 and above), male and female.
Food at Finish Line
At the finish line runners may enjoy Callaway Blue bottled water, Coca Cola Powerade, Coca Cola soda, as well as a McDonald’s breakfast burrito or a hamburger, fresh fruit, bagels, energy bars and cookies. Finishers will also be treated to a Michelob Ultra beer (over age 21 only). Buck Ice will keep our drinks cool. We also will offer gluten free food to our finishers. And a special home-made Popsicle made by local business Planet Pops will be provided to each finisher.
At the finish line each runner will receive a mylar blanket to keep warm.
Volunteers wearing distinctive brightly colored shirts and soldiers in uniform or camouflage shirts will serve runners at Registration, Water Stations, and along the course. Please be sure to thank them.
Medical Aid Stations are at the Start/Finish area and at the Trade Center. Ambulances will be available to attend to your medical needs. All medical staff along the course will be identifiable in red medical
shirts. Please thank the doctors and nurses from St. Francis Hospital, Columbus Regional Healthcare and Columbus State University for donating their time.
Post-race massages will be available at the finish line to runners without any charge.
Track your Runner
A link on our SoldierMarathon.com website will allow you to key in the bib number or last name of the runner you wish to follow. This site is designed to work on smart phones and computers.
Please enjoy our Expo at the National Infantry Museum. Our Soldier Marathon shirts and gear with logo will be available. Running gear and other outdoor gear will be available by Big Dog Running Company and other national clothing and shoe brands.
Things to Do in Columbus Before or After the Race
The National Infantry Museum is wonderful. The Vietnam Wall Memorial is a wonderful testament to the sacrifices made by so many of our finest men and women. Across the street from the Infantry Museum, Oxbow Meadows provides you with an environmental learning experience with live animals. Along the RiverWalk is the Civil War Naval Museum and Coca-Cola Space Science Center that you will find very interesting. The Chattahoochee River offers Whitewater rafting, kayaking, a zip-line and a ropes course.
Also interesting is the Steeplechase horse racing event being held at Callaway Gardens north of Columbus on Saturday, November 7, 2015. A Steeplechase is an amazing horse racing event and worthwhile for runners to consider going to after the Soldier Marathon. Callaway Gardens is a 45 minute drive from Columbus, but runners could finish their run, shower, and then drive to Callaway Gardens to enjoy the horse racing. Information is available at the Steeplechase – Callaway Gardens website.
We wish you the very best running and a wonderful time in Columbus and Fort Benning, Georgia as well as the surrounding community including Phenix City, Alabama and Callaway Gardens, Georgia.
The Soldier Marathon Race Committee