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Olympic bronze medalist Shalane Flanagan will headline two days of running at the first ever Rock ‘n’ Roll Running Festival in Chicago on July 18-20. After warming up her gams with runners at the Rock ‘n’ Roll Chicago 5K on Saturday, our long-distance sweetheart will compete at the 6th annual Rock ‘n’ Roll Chicago Half Marathon presented by HumanaVitality on Sunday. Both events start and finish at Grant Park in downtown Chicago.
“From the Billy Joel concert on Friday night at Wrigley Field to Saturday’s 5K and Sunday’s half-marathon, it’s going to be an incredible weekend in Chicago,” says Flanagan, who set her half-marathon PR of 1:08:31 at Rock ‘n’ Roll New Orleans last year. “This will be my first step towards a marathon this fall, and I’m excited to see where my fitness is at after my recent training in Park City. It will also be a treat for me to shake out with the Chicago running community at the 5K on Saturday while enjoying the amazing views of the downtown skyline along the city’s beautiful lakefront.”
Rock ‘n’ Roll Chicago will host more than 20,000 runners over race weekend, and, for the first time, race weekend will have races on both Saturday (5K) and Sunday (half marathon and 5K). Everyone gets a medal—and runners who participate in both Saturday and Sunday’s events will earn a special Remix Challenge medal to show off their extra efforts!
“To have Shalane Flanagan, one of America’s best runners, earn the first ever Remix Challenge medal is truly going to be something special,” says Tracy Sundlun, SVP and co-founder of the Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon Series. “Chicago has one of the most passionate running communities in the world and some of the most knowledgeable fans in the sport. With two days of running and multiple concerts taking place in the city, it’s going to be a summertime celebration unlike any other.”
We were all hypnotized by Flanagan’s valiant performance at the 2014 Boston Marathon, where she finished seventh overall in 2:22:02, the fastest time ever recorded by an American woman in Boston’s 118-year history. Her time was a PR by more than three minutes!
Run bud and close friend Kara Goucher holds the course record in Chicago (1:08:05).
For more information on the event, visit runrocknroll.com/chicago. And don’t forget to Tweet/Insta us your #raverun shots from the streets of the Windy City!