2 races will be state championship events

No major changes are planned for this year’s Mill Race Marathon.

That includes the courses for the 26.2-mile marathon, 13.1-mile half-marathon and 3.1-mile 5K races scheduled for Sept. 23 in Columbus, race director Joel Sauer said.

The kids fun run also will return.

Sauer said that pacers for specific mile-split targets that debuted last year were well-received and will return in 2017.

The most notable change this year will be that the full marathon and the 5K have been designated as state championship events by the Road Runners Club of America. The top finishers from Indiana in the marathon and 5K will be considered state champions.

“I’ve never heard of having the same race getting two different events,” Sauer said. “Generally, they will spread them out to different events, so the fact that we got both the full marathon and the 5K is pretty cool. It’s kind of like a race within a race.”

One slight change is that the event medical team will be using a new radio communication system that has been rolled out by the state of Indiana. Race finishers also will receive newly designed medals.

Event organizers are looking for volunteer groups this year to serve as course marshals. The groups can be high school, college, church, youth groups (high school age or older), company or community groups. Groups of 10 or more will receive a $100 donation to their organization for every 10 people that work the race.

At a glance

For more information on this year’s event, visit millracemarathon.com.