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The Tunnel Hill Marathon, a USATF/IAAF sanctioned, and certified course, is a great place to run a BOSTON QUALIFYING TIME*, or a personal best. Certification # IL18001BW. You can view the map and certification info here USATF certification info and map
We use 26.2 miles of the same fast course where Zach Bitter ran 12:08 for 100 miles last November, where Camille Herron shattered the World Record for 100 miles in 2017; where Mike Bialick ran the fastest 100 in North America in 2015; where Traci Falbo ran the Fastest Known Time for 100 by a woman in 2014; and where Coree Woltering ran a 5:30:15 50 miler in 2016.
The race, presented by Durbin Race Management, takes place on Sunday November 10, beginning at 07:00 Central Time.
You will start at the same start line in Vienna, IL as the Tunnel Hill 100/50, exactly 24hours after the 100/50 start. You'll run 1.1 miles south on the Tunnel Hill State Trail, (a smooth, rails-to-trails dirt course, covered with crushed rock), then turn north, and proceed through the world famous tunnel, and to the northern turn-around, before running back through the tunnel, and on to the finish at Vienna Park. The final 9 miles is a gentle, gradual downhill.
You'll encounter hundreds of runners who are finishing the final miles of their 100 mile run, and everyone will have a great opportunity to cheer each other on as you work your way over dozens of train trestles, and among gorgeous rock formations.
There will be a 6 hour limit, and the race course will close at 1pm on Sunday.
* Note: Typically, registration opens for Boston around the second weekend in September. If the 2019 race is sold out when you run the 2018 TH Marathon, then a BQ time will still be good for the 2020 Boston.
At one time, the rumble of freight cars reverberated through the narrow tunnel. Wooden trestles, with their system of slanted supports and horizontal cross pieces, spanned numerous bluffs and creeks. Passengers in Pullman cars clocked the miles with these and other landmarks as they traveled one of southern Illinois' most scenic routes.
Today, the railroad is gone. The route, known as Tunnel Hill State Trail, remains.
Tunnel Hill State Trail stretches for over 50 miles from Harrisburg to Karnak. The trail continues on a trails spur for 2.5 miles from Karnak to Cache River State Natural Area - Henry Barkhausen Wetlands Center on the old Chicago and Eastern Illinois railroad bed.
The trail, composed of dirt bed covered in small rock, (ranges in width from 40 to 200 feet) features ever-changing vistas, abundant wildlife, picturesque trestles ranging from 34 to 450 feet, and incredible rock formations.
Elevation ranges from 400' at Vienna, to the highest point at Tunnel Hill at 680 feet.
The main attraction is the iconic tunnel. Once over 800’ long, before a portion collapsed in 1929 leaving 600 feet of thrills and chllls.
For much more information on Tunnel Hill State Trail, please visit the Illinois Dept of Resources page. http://www.dnr.state.il.us/lands/landmgt/parks/r5/tunnel.htm
Runners begin at the City Park in Vienna, make a celebratory loop around the parking lot, and head south on the Tunnel Hill State Trail for 1.1 miles to a turnaround point. From there, proceed north to the northern turnaround, and then back 11.75 miles to the start/finish.
You will run through the famous tunnel twice.
Course surface: 1/3 mile pavement at the start, with the rest being gravel except for a very small section of concrete around the finish area.
Time Limit - You will have 6 hours. This is a very fast course. There is no grace period.
All times are CENTRAL Standard Time
The Start and Finish are at Vienna City Park, 302 E. Vine St, Vienna, IL 62995
Saturday - Nov 9 - at Vienna City Park
Packet pickup: 5pm - 6pm - inside the brown Depot building
Sunday November 10 at Vienna City Park
5a - 6:30a Parking
Day of Race packet pick up
6:45am - assemble around start for final instructions
7:00a START of Tunnel Hill Marathon
Shoes/Gaiters: The running surface is smooth, with a finely crushed limestone layer over a dirt bed. You can wear whichever shoes are most comfortable for you. I recommend you wear gaiters to keep the small rock out of your shoes (especially if it rains, as the rock tends to stick to the bottom of your shoes more).
Pacers - Due to limitations on the number of runners allowed, pacers are NOT allowed. Of course, you are allowed to run with anyone who is officially entered in the race.
Dogs - Sorry, dogs are NOT allowed to run with anyone entered in the race.
Strollers are NOT allowed.
Trekking poles are typically NOT needed, however, if you feel you need an exception, then please contact me.
Aid stations, or water drops are located every 3-4 miles apart. They will be stocked with the usual aid station fare... water, SWORD hydration drink (www.drinksword.com), bananas, oranges, chips, candy, energy snacks, Honey Stinger energy gel, and other items.
We are NOT allowed to place an aid station at Breeden Trestle. However the State will leave gallon jugs of water for us there for your use. There will be NO CUPS at this trestle, so if you intend to take water there, you'll need to have a container for fluids with you. You should be aware that if you don't intend to take water at Breeden Trestle you will have 6.9 miles between regular aid stations.
Again, a very minimal amount of cups will be available... please bring your own water/fluid containers.
Limited amount of Soda will be on-hand, as it’s well known that too much sugar will blow up your race.
Porta Johns are available at every aid station, except Breeden Trestle. Toilets and running water are available at Tunnel Hill aid station.
Hamburgers, veggie burgers, and hot dogs will be available at the Vienna Park station at the finish.
LODGING - From the South:
Paducah, KY is about 25 miles south (or East via I-24. Exit 4 Paducah has just about every type of motel.
Metropolis, IL is about 22 miles south of Vienna, just off I-24.
From the North:
Marion, IL... about 30 miles from Vienna.
Camping: Tent Camping ONLY is allowed at the Vienna Park. First Come/First Served as they do not take reservations. You may also sleep in your car. Very convenient since the start/finish is here. Lots of places to eat, get groceries, etc within a half mile.
Camper/RV Camping: We encourage you to use Shawnee Forest Campground - (618) 658-0619 - 1800 State Route 146E, Vienna, IL. (only about a mile from the start/finish). 60 Full Hook Up Sites.
Camping: Main Brothers Campground - (618) 634-9311 - Karnak, IL - Full campground facilities, with water, hookups, etc.; about ten miles from the start, very near the 10, 15, 60, and 65 mile aid station. of the 100 miler. NOTE: the marathon course does not run by this campground.
AIRPORTS: proximity to Vienna, IL
St. Louis, MO, Lambert International 150 miles
Paducah Kentucky, Barkley Regional airport 35 miles.
Nashville International is 175 miles.
Prize Money: The winners, M/F, will receive $500. 2nd will receive $200
Awards: Top ten, M/F, will receive special awards.
Custom Medals will be awarded to all finishers, so no age group awards.
Awards are given as you finish. There is no "official" awards ceremony.
Additional race information can be found at http://www.durbinracemanagement.com.
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