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Race Preview: 2016 Foot Traffic Flat (Sauvie Island)

Sometimes we find races that become an icon and a tradition for a certain time of year, and they make it onto our "bucket list" of races to run one day. The Foot Traffic Flat on Sauvie Island on July 4th is one of such races. It has been on my radar for several years now, and while I am a little nervous about the possibility of heat that could make it an even greater challenge, I am very excited to run the Flat Half for the first time this year. The Flat offers several race distances: Full marathon, half marathon, 8k, and 5k. The full and half marathon are run on the roads on Sauvie Island, while the 8k and 5k take place off road on the Pumpkin Patch where all races start and end. 

As the name of the race implies, the course for all races is very flat. This makes the event perfect for seasoned runners reaching for their next PR, but also for those who are making their first attempt at a longer distance. Participants of nearly all speeds are welcome, but please be aware of the 6hr time limit for the marathon.

It is recommended that you carpool to the island or buy a shuttle ticket with your registration. The shuttle will pick you up in NW Portland and make your ride to the island smoother. When buying your shuttle ticket, consider your race time and the fact that the last shuttle is scheduled to leave Sauvie Island at 11:45am. Click here for the shuttle schedule.

On race day, the marathon starts first at 6:30am, with the half marathon shortly behind at 6:50am. 5k and 8k will start together at approximately 7:15am, after all full and half marathon runners have started their race. The 5k/8k course will be an off-road cross country race entirely on the Pumpkin Patch farm.

Half/full marathon course (click to enlarge)

Much of the course for both full and half marathon is the same, but around mile 3.5 the half marathon turns right, while the marathoners will go straight on Sauvie Island Rd for a long out and back to add the extra 13.1 miles to their distance. They then re-join the half marathon course for the loop around the island. The scenerie on the course is spectacular. Not only will you see gorgeous farmlands and views of surrounding hills and mountains, but keep your eyes out for birds and other wildlife. There are seven aid stations on the half, thirteen on the full. All of them offer water, Nuun, and bathrooms, and all but station 1 will also offer Clif ShotBlox to refuel.

After the race, stay for drinks, music, strawberry shortcake, and hot dogs (and veggie dogs) served to you by Sauvie Island residents. Due to the varied start times, there is no official awards ceremony, but awards and door prize winners will be announced throughout the day.  The race is a fundraiser for the Sauvie Island Fire Department.

Foot Traffic Flat details:
When: Monday, July 4th, 2016.
Where: Sauvie Island (map)
What: Marathon, half marathon, 8k, 5k
Registration: Online here or in store at Foot Traffic
Registration Cost:  Marathon – $92; Half – $74; 8k – $46; 5k – $39; Shuttle ticket – $7.50
Registration includes: Well supported, chip timed race, gender-specific cotton event shirt, post race food, drink, shortcake and hotdogs.
Packet Pickup: Thursday, June 30th at Foot Traffic West (13306 NW Cornell Rd.) from 12-7 pm
Friday, July 1st at Foot Traffic Downtown (333 SW Taylor St.) from 12-7 pm
Saturday, July 2nd at Foot Traffic Sellwood (7718 SE 13th Ave) from 12-6 pm
Sunday, July 3rd at Foot Traffic Northeast(4020 NE Fremont St.) from 11-4 pm

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