With a whole year to evaluate last year's foibles, a cleaner, prettier, more convenient Colfax Marathon race course which sidesteps much of the 26-mile street the event was named for awaits today's 6,000 runners. Marathon co-founder Jean Townsend says she and the rest of the event staff listened carefully to runner responses in order to plan for this year. What they heard sounds a lot like what my relay team would have told them if we hadn't bolted for brunch and Bloody Marys instead of filling out the survey after the race.
The porta-potty situation was out of control. As I waited in Aurora to start my 10K jaunt down Colfax, I was treated to the sights and smells of the only potty in the vicinity, plus the long line of pissed-off runners losing precious minutes on their time; that should be ancient history this year. The hills have been cut out completely, and instead of a straight line up Colfax, the marathon is a circle that begins and ends at City Park nice for people who want to drive to the race and end up back at their cars, assuming they can find parking. There will be more variety in the landscape and shade, Townsend says. But only the half-marathoners will be treated to the Colfax stretch I enjoyed last year, from the park east to Aurora and back though they'll miss the Bluebird District.
New this year is a Charity Partner program, allowing runners to raise funds for one of 41 specific charities. Find details at www.coloradocolfaxmarathon.org. Runners take their marks at 6 a.m.
Sun., May 18, 6 a.m., 2008