Local road race sees surge in runners following Boston Marathon - WSLS 10 NBC in Roanoke/Lynchburg Va

Local race sees surge in runners following Boston Marathon

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CHAPEL HILL, N.C. -

This weekend, the Triangle is preparing for its first big road race since the tragedy at the Boston Marathon, and it appears that what happened in Boston has spurred runners into defiance against violence.

Organizers of the Tar Heel 10-Miler say interest in their race increased after the bombings in Boston; so much so that the field is closed at 5,100 runners.

"We had a pretty significant surge this week," said race staffer Thys Wind. "We had folks say I wasn't going to make it; now I'm going. They are determined to be there and make a statement."

And those statements are abundant on the race's Facebook page. Its filled with comments like: "I am running this race. I will not be intimidated by violence" or "we will not give in to fear." 

"They are running for the people who are victims and were wounded," said race volunteer Hannah Harrison. "It's kind of like showing all runners are a support group who work as a team."

Right now, running Chapel Hills's streets is uninhibited. However, on race day, security along the same roads that make up the racecourse will be beefed up.

"I'm happy to wait in line a little while longer or get patted down if it means that the place is safe," said recreational runner Miller Nichols.

Before the race begins they'll be a moment of silence to acknowledge what happened at the marathon, but the feelings go deeper than that.

"This has changed not only Boston but its changed the sport of running in many ways; we never saw this coming," said Thys.

Steve Sbraccia

Steve is an award-winning reporter for WNCN and former assistant professor. A seasoned professional, Steve is proud to call the Triangle home since 2005 after over two decades in Boston, Mass.  More>>

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