The Largest Running Relay Race In The World, Hood To Coast
As the largest running relay race in the world, The Hood To Coast Relay stretches 197 miles from the top of Oregon's majestic Mt. Hood down to the beautiful Pacific Ocean in Seaside, Oregon. Over 12,000 runners and 4,800 walkers in Portland to Coast, share in the experience of this annual event.
Teams from around the world come to participate in the Nike Hood To Coast Relay, Portland To Coast Walk and Portland To Coast High School Challenge. Each race has a range of participants, from serious runners and walkers to teams just out to enjoy the adventure, (and maybe out-do one another in van and oufit decor.
Don't miss a weekend of fun filled entertainment.
History Of this Event:
Race founder, Bob Foote, needed a new challenge. As a dedicated ultra-marathon runner, Bob, as well as many of his running friends were looking to test themselves in a new, fresh challege. That's when Bob's creative mind starting churning and came up with the idea of running from nearby Mount Hood, the backdrop for the city of Portland in which he lived, to another of his favorite weekend get-aways...the beach! A group of Bob's running friends and competitors would form relay teams, handing off every 5 miles, starting at the ski lodge at Mount Hood and finishing in the sleepy coastal town of Pacific City. As a longtime runner, Bob knew it was something he would enjoy, and so created the race.
The first Hood To Coast Relay took place on August 7th, 1982 on a full moon, with 8 teams of 10 runners. Bob made simple spray paint marks on the road to indicate exact exchange points, (and being an architect, it meant exactly every 5 miles). This translated to one exchange point being in the middle of a very busy intersection in Portland!
Word got out of Bob's adventurous relay event, and the race began to take on a life of its own. As Hood To Coast grew each year, it necessitated much safer exchange points with available parking, resulting in varying leg lengths that continue today. In 1989, the event outgrew capacity for the town of Pacific City and moved to the beachside city of Seaside, Oregon. The distance of the event then increased to 192 miles, with teams growing in size to 12 members, in order to accommodate the extra mileage.
In 1999 a cap of 1,000 teams was agreed upon by Hood To Coast and Clatsop County to keep the event safe and enjoyable to all who participate. The limit still exists today, with Hood To Coast filling on "opening day" of registration for the past eight years!
In early 2006, Bob brought Felicia, his daughter and long-time runner, on board Hood To Coast. She has taken on much of Bob's responsibilities and passion for the race, having participated in HTC five times, and attended or assisted in the race 23 of the last 26 years. Thus the Hood To Coast tradition as "Grandaddy of all Relays" will continue for many years to come!
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