Runners are preparing to challenge the fastest course in the state of New Mexico during the first ever, Run Then Wine Marathon in Las Cruces, September 20th at the Luna Rossa Winery located at 1321 Avenida de Mesilla.
Men and women will be competing for cash prizes (must be USATF member to collect cash prize), $500.00 for 1st Prize, $300 for 2nd and $100 for 3rd place.
The 26.2 mile course which traverses through the farmlands of the Mesilla Valley is rated as the fastest in the state, and designated as the official 2014 New Mexico Association Marathon Championship Course.
The race is sanctioned by the USA Track and Field Association and USATF runners can qualify for the 2015 Boston Marathon as well as the 2016 U.S. Olympic Trials in Los Angeles. Sanctioned athletes attempting to qualify for the trials have to meet the “B” standard time of 2:18:00. Athletes meeting the “A” standard time of 2:15:00 receive monetary support to compete at the Olympic Trials.
Approximately 450 to 500 runners are expected for all three races. The marathon begins at 6:30 a.m., half-marathon at 7:30 a.m., and 5k at 8 a.m.
Race Director, Sonia Gonzales says the marathon is attracting the attention of amateur and professional runners alike. “We have several experienced runners in the field, among them is Dorota Gruca, a 2008 Olympian and world class runner who represented Poland in the Beijing Olympics. She has been running professionally for 25 years, and in 2010, won the Las Vegas Rock’n’Roll Marathon as well as the Polish National Marathon Championship. She also set the Mexican national record in the 2004 Mazatlan Marathon with a time of 2:28:49,” said Gonzales. “Camille Herron is also competing, she is a three time Olympics trial qualifier and has won 11 marathon championship titles in eleven states, and she is attempting to win her 12th state championship in New Mexico. Her goal is to take 1st in all 50 states.”
The event also features a health & fitness expo, with professionals from the industry sharing the latest in running and sports gear, health and fitness services, health food, and other related items. The day is lined with fun-filled activities for adults and children, as well as live entertainment.
An award/celebration ceremony takes place around noon, with pizza, wine and live entertainment at Lunarossa Winery, located at 1321 Avenida de Mesilla in Las Cruces, New Mexico. The public is welcome to attend a free outdoor concert at 7 p.m., featuring local band, Border Avenue.
A portion of the marathon proceeds will benefit the Wounded Warriors in Action Foundation. Several representatives from various military installations in the area (Holloman Air Force Base, White Sands Missile Range and Ft. Bliss and the New Mexico National Guard) will be participating or volunteering at the event.
Please visit runthenwine.com for event details and winery information can be found at lunarossawinery.com, or call (575) 526-2484.