And they're off! There is a new race series coming to southern New Hampshire. This is an awesome idea
combining three Irish themed races on successive weekends. Three weeks and it will be over. Those
running all three events will enjoy a unique series tech-shirt. It all begins with the St. Paddy's Five Miler
in Portsmouth, followed by the Pot O' Gold 5K in Londonderry, and closes with the unique Manchester Shamrock Shuffle, which runs the famous St. Patrick's Day Parade route just before the parade kicks off. Runners who complete the three-race series can participate in the parade and march the route with Millennium Running! The series starts with five miles March 13, followed by the 5K on March 19, with the finale—two miles on a closed Elm Street on March 27—you do not want to miss this series.
"Run the Triple Crown," with each race having a distinctive theme. But I can tell you, the primary theme is to have an absolute blast before, during, and after each race. The variation in distance is intriguing. This series is an idea whose time has come, and you can bet that many a runner will be signing up for this innovative trio just as soon as possible. Each run and post race party will be really awesome in and of itself. The post race parties at the five mile and 5K will be really fun, and you can't beat a parade and a few brews to close things out in Manchester. As a series it will be just an incredible combo. It will also be a great way to prepare for the rest of the spring racing season. This set will be about as much fun as you can possibly have while racing and training.
St. Paddy's is in its second year, while the Manchester Shamrock Shuffle is new and one that will quickly become a classic. The three events fit well as on the calendar; and in only three weeks the series will be done! Southern New Hampshire and neighboring Massachusetts and Maine provide one of the hotbeds for running in the entire USA, and also a hotbed of innovation. Everyone who does one race will definitely want to run them all. But if you can't run them all, simply enjoy them individually. Each race, each town, and each establishment has its own unique personality. Together they add up to springtime fun for runners of every level.
So Much to Like—convenient and easy to get to
All three races are conveniently located and easy to get to. The Shamrock Shuffle is in downtown Manchester with plenty of parking—a quick exit off the Everett Turnpike on Granite Street will take you right to Elm Street and Veteran's Park. The Londonderry Pot O' Gold is on Route 102 and short distance from I-93; Paddy's is at the Pease Tradeport, easily accessible by I-95 and the Spaulding Turnpike. They are close to many runners in New Hampshire, the North Shore of Massachusetts, Southern Maine, and the Boston Metro Area. All three are an easy ride from Maine and Vermont.
The Triple Crown Website: www.manchestershuffle.com/irishtriplecrown.aspx
The Races—a Growing Tradition
The first event is the second annual St. Paddy's Five Miler hosted by Paddy's American Grille on the Pease Tradeport, a short ride from the heart of historic Portsmouth. Paddy's is located at 27 International Drive, Portsmouth, NH 03801. It runs on March 13 at 10:30 a.m. This one is building a great running tradition, and takes place on the huge former Pease Air Force Base, now a corporate park and Air National Guard base. This event is destined to be a classic, and joins a long list of well known, well organized races in Portsmouth. It is a USATF-certified course, and mostly flat. Beginners and walkers are welcome. You will love the Irish music by the Celtic Tribe. See the Website for details:
There are a lot of ways to win at this one: Top Three women and men overall; top three in each ten-year age group; four categories of Pease Corporate Challenge divisions; cash "Spirit" awards, and a great raffle. There will be hot food and cold brews at the post race party, complimented by the live music. You may see a few bagpipers along the race course. You will get a terrific Irish-themed Tech shirt if you are among the first 500 to register. And the first 500 finishers get a pint glass in which to pour their favorite beverages. Most importantly, this race benefits the New Heights program for youths 11 to 18, "building competence, character, confidence, and resiliency for healthy, successful lives." www.newheightsonline.org
What a way to start! Remember, you can't run all three if you miss the first—be there and soak up the unique flavor of a great pub and restaurant, and a well organized new race.