The trails around Lynchburg are thick with runners gearing up for the 40th Annual Virginia 10 Miler. Lynchburg's premier running event will be held Sept. 28. The event begins at E.C. Glass High School at 8 a.m.
The history of the Virginia 10 Miler is interlinked with the history of the Lynchburg Road Runners Club. The first Virginia 10 Miler in 1974 was the inaugural event for the Lynchburg Road Runners, a club that had formed earlier in the year.
The first race had fewer than 200 finishers. Last year's Virginia 10 Miler had more than 1300 finishers. At this year's event, watch for Bill Draper, wearing bib #1 to honor his 40th consecutive appearance in the 10 Miler.
Jeff Fedorko, owner of Riverside Runners, returns as race director this year. Fedorko has been race director for the Virginia 10 Miler since 2007.
For the first year, there will be assisted athletes participating in the Virginia 10 Miler. The eight teams participating this year are Team Trinity, Team Aaron, Team Marissa, Team Joel, Team Sophie, Team Jasmine, Team Alison and Team James.
Also on hand at this year's 10 Miler will be two special guests, Kathrine Switzer and Roger Robinson. The husband and wife team are world class runners, authors and public speakers.
Switzer, who attended Lynchburg College, was the first woman to officially run the Boston Marathon. While she's in Lynchburg, Switzer will also speak at the Women's Luncheon Series on Sept. 26 at the Holiday Inn Downtown.
Robinson has run in countless masters races on five continents and serves as an inspiration to masters runners, ages 40 and up, around the world.
Switzer and Robinson will also be on hand at the Virginia 10 Miler family festival on Friday, Sept. 27. The festival will be held at Amazement Square with the Amazing Mile Children's Run races for ages 13 and under.
Online registration for the Virginia 10 Miler ends Sept. 22. The Virginia 10 Miler was chosen by the Road Runners Club of America as the 2013 RRCA Regional Championship.