This year’s River to River Relay is scheduled to be run Saturday, April 22. The relay begins in Union County and ends in Golconda.
The event is coordinated by the River to River Runners Club.
The club noted on its website that due to logistical issues on the relay course, the number of teams in the event has to be limited and is 250 in 2017.
“In 2016 we received over 370 applications in the first 10 minutes,” the club reported.
Teams of eight runners compete on an 80-mile course.
Each runner completes three sections that range in length from 2.5 to 4 miles.
Teams are started in groups every 30 minutes beginning at 6:15 a.m. and continuing until the last group is started at 8:45 a.m. The finish line closes at exactly 8 p.m.
The relay starts in western Union County at McGee Hill in LaRue-Pine Hills on a bluff overlooking the Mississippi River valley.
The course follows country roads (mostly paved but some stretches of gravel) through the Shawnee National Forest to its finish at the Ohio River in Golconda.
In Johnson County, the trails runs through Goreville, Tunnel Hill and Simpson.
Among area teams featured on the website for 2017 are:
Kings of Taper, Buncombe. Buns on the Run, Goreville. Brown Electric, Goreville. Simpson Gray Gang, Simpson. Smart Runners, Vienna. WTF? Were We Thinking?!?, Buncombe.
River to River Relay Traffic Advisory
The Illinois State Police District 22 is wanting to alert the public of the increased pedestrian and motor vehicle traffic on the rural roads of several southern Illinois counties this coming weekend.
On April 22 rural roads and some state highways in the counties of Union, Johnson and Pope will become the racetrack for the annual River to River Relay. The race starts at Mc Gee Hill in La Rue Pine Hills (Rural Union County) and will conclude in Golconda.
Along the route there will be runners and extra vehicle traffic which might cause traffic delays at times. Officers will be posted at various intersections along the race for traffic control to insure the safety of participants and the motoring public. Please remain vigilant while traveling through these areas and please be patient.