The Bank of Fincastle 5K & 10K Fall Run is Saturday and again organizers are hoping for another beautiful fall day.
Hundreds of runners are expected for the 31st edition of the annual race that features dozens of youth from Botetourt County schools along with experienced and novice runners on one of the most challenging road races in Virginia.
They will make their way through the streets of the historic Botetourt County seat beginning with the 9 a.m. starting gun at Central Academy Middle School.
Participants who manage it through the challenging course are rightfully proud to wear the popular long-sleeve shirts that go to the runners who either stride through the 5K or 10K portions of the race.
As usual, downtown Fincastle’s streets will be closed to traffic during the race from 9-10:30 a.m. No traffic will be allowed on the streets that runners use (and some in between) during the race.
Registration ($25) for those who have not signed up yet will be accepted on race day from 7:30-8:30 a.m. at the school.
And, as usual, there will be dozens upon dozens of parents and supporters gathered at the start/finish line on Poor Farm Road to lend encouragement to the school children who will be running in the race.
The older and more experienced runners have a starting line just ahead of the Elementary Division starting line. One of the hallmarks of The Bank of Fincastle Fall Run is the youth who participate in the 5K portion of the race each year.
The county’s elementary schools compete with each other for team trophies and medals that go to the first, second and third place teams (the times of the top runners will be used to determine team times).
Also, runners from the two middle schools compete in the Middle School Division, and older student runners can compete in the Open Division.
Individually, runners compete for overall men’s and women’s trophies and medals in both the 5K and 10K. They also compete for men’s and women’s medals in 13 different age groups from 9 and under to 70 and over.
The race course leaves CAMS and climbs Poor Farm Road to Springwood Road past Breckinridge Elementary School to Back Street. It follows Back Street to Roanoke Street, then climbs past the Botetourt County Courthouse and The Bank of Fincastle to Academy Street. The course goes up Academy Street to Church Street where the 5K and 10K split.
The 5K course goes up the hill at Godwin Cemetery, back to Church Street, to Main Street and back to Hancock Street (Springwood Road) and then returns to CAMS and the finish line.
The 10K turns south on Church Street, goes to US 220 then to Muse Road where the course has a turn-around just before the intersection with Brughs Mill Road. It goes back to Fincastle, Church Street, around the hill at Godwin Cemetery and follows the 5K course back to CAMS.
In keeping with a tradition established years ago, this year’s long sleeve race shirt again features an outdoor scene in Botetourt. The 2017 shirt has a coyote with a rabbit and blue jay featured in a fall scene.