Manchester Road Race marks its 75th year run on Thanksgiving Day, September 24, 2011. Fifteen thousand runners from all over the world will grace the diamond success of the event. Sally Kipyego, who was born in Kenya and the women’s champion at last year’s Manchester Road Race, will run again to defend her title. Joining in to celebrate are major sponsors Macy’s, First Niagara Bank, ECHN, Pratt & Whitney, Cox Communications, Cigna, Henkel and Stop & Shop.
According to the MMR President Tris Carta , “Our sponsors are a vital part of the Manchester Road Race. They allow us to present a world-class international event that offers family fun at a very affordable price, and help us raise significant funds for distribution to some very worthy non-profit causes.”
The 4.748-mile race starts at 10 a.m. on Main Street and finishes on Main Street, in front of St. James Church. To chronicle the MMR achievement a 176-page full-color publication entitled “The Manchester Road Race: A Seventy-Five Year Celebration”, co-authored by race archivist Rick Dyer, retired Hartford Courant photographer John Long, and Jerry O’Connor, editor and publisher for Annual MMR celebration, is now up for grabs for $29.
“This is much more than just a history of the road race,” said O’Connor, who is also a member of the race’s development committee. “We believe that the photos and text also capture the fun, excitement, spectacle and spirit of Connecticut’s largest sporting event.”
The MMR 75 years of running will kick off with “Spirit of Freedom” hovering over the sky. “The huge cargo plane, known as the “Spirit of Freedom,” was one of 330 Skymasters that the United States sent to supply Berlin when the Soviet Union attempted to blockade the divided city after World War II. Manchester Road Race officials have arranged with the Berlin Airlift Historical Foundation, which now owns the “Spirit of Freedom,” to have the C-54E kick off the festivities with a fly over at 9:54 a.m. on Thanksgiving Day, just after the National Anthem is played, and prior to the road race’s 10 a.m. start.”