In an effort to protect the more than 1,400 runners expected to participate in the 24th annual Steamboat Marathon, Half Marathon and 10K, several roads will be closed Sunday.
From 6 a.m. to 3 p.m., the westbound lane of Lincoln Avenue from Fifth to 11th streets will be closed for the finish of all races. Fifth, Sixth, Seventh, Eighth, Ninth, 10th and 11th streets also will be closed from Lincoln Avenue to Oak Street.
Parts of Routt County Road 129, the primary marathon and half-marathon route, will be closed, as well. Northbound traffic on C.R. 129 will be diverted to the left lane at C.R. 129 and C.R. 44 and will proceed north. Southbound traffic on C.R. 129 will be diverted at Cullen's Corner onto C.R. 44 and back to C.R. 129.
From Cullen's Corner to the half-marathon start, there will be one-way traffic. A pilot car will be leading traffic on the west side of the road. People are asked to avoid C.R. 129 on Sunday, if possible.
Transportation for race participants will be provided free of charge Sunday, and Riley Polumbus, communications director for Steamboat Springs Chamber Resort Association, is asking racers not to try to find their way to the start.
"Runners risk missing the start of the race," Polumbus said. "If they take our transportation, they won't have that problem. We are trying to limit the people on the course to those who really need to be there."
The marathon buses load between 5:45 and 6 a.m. Sunday at the Gondola Transit Center on Mount Werner Circle and between 6 and 6:15 a.m. downtown at the parking lot at Eighth and Oak streets.
Buses for half-marathon participants load between 6 and 6:15 a.m. at the Gondola Transit Center and between 6:15 and 6:30 a.m. downtown. Buses will bring racers' personal items back to the finish area, but runners need to provide a bag for their items and be able to identify them.
Spectators also are discouraged from driving their cars on the course and stopping to cheer. Race director Paul Sachs said bikers are allowed on the course.
Runners must pick up their race packets between noon and 5 p.m. Friday or 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday at Christy Sports across from City Market in Central Park Plaza. There is no race-day packet pick-up.
Sachs said there is a need for volunteers for this year's races, as well.
Each year, more than 500 people help put on the Steamboat Marathon, Half Marathon and 10K. Anyone interested in helping can call Kendra Ferwerda at the Chamber Resort Association at 879-0882, ext. 208, or Sachs at 846-9777.
This year's Steamboat Marathon, Half Marathon and 10K begins at 7:30 a.m., and all races end at the Routt County Courthouse. Jason Saitta, the men's marathon winner from 1999 to 2002 is in the men's marathon field, as is Steve Krebs, last year's champion. Inge Schuurmans McClory, the women's half-marathon record holder, is returning to run in this year's half marathon. She set the record of 1 hour, 18 minutes, 30 seconds in 1995.