Organizers in Newport Beach, California have extended the Beach Cities Challenge, a racing series comprised of three annual SoCal marathons: the Surf City Marathon in Huntington Beach, the OC Marathon, and the Long Beach International City Marathon. Begun in 2011 with the Surf City Marathon, the series was set to end in 2013 with the same event. Increasing popularity, however, has brought an extension to at least 2014.
Bob Seagren, CEO of Run Racing, a company that specializes in the management and execution of endurance, health, and fitness events, has expressed his pleasure in the decision to extend the series. “We have had tremendous success… and are excited to keep the series going at the upcoming Long Beach International City Bank Marathon,” Seagren said.
To complete the challenge, participants must run three of the events consecutively and may start with any of the three races in 2012 or 2013. Those who do so are rewarded with a special Beach Cities Challenge medal.
The OC Marathon traverses Newport Beach, Costa Mesa, Santa Ana and Irvine. The event’s race director, Gary Kutscher, noted that the decision to extend the Challenge for another year came after following huge participation through the 2013 series.
"The Beach Cities Challenge was originally scheduled to end with the Surf City Marathon in 2013, but the success of the series has been overwhelming, with nearly 75 percent of participants that run two of our events signing up to run the third," Kutscher said, adding that a new medal will be designed for the 2013 Challenge honorees.
The individual marathons have seen more than 60,000 runners in total participation over the years, and nearly 4,500 runners have successfully completed the challenge. The Long Beach International City Marathon on Oct. 7 may see as many as 500 participants repeat the challenge successfully, running six consecutive races.
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