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Runner's Gazette
Serving the Mid-Atlantic Region

America's First Running Newspaper - Established September, 1976

OCTOBER, 2018

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AT THE STARTING LINE OF THE 2018 BIX 7.
QUAD CITY TIMES PHOTO

 

Tiahun, Muriuki Win Bix 7 Battle

By Herb Townsend

DAVENPORT, IA—Straddling the banks of the Mississippi are the Quad Cities of Moline and Rock Island on the Illinois side, and Bettendorf, and Davenport on the Iowa side. Davenport is the birthplace of Bix Beiderbecke, a noted jazz musician in the 1920s, and his birthday is celebrated here annually with a jazz festival. In 1975, the first Bix 7-mile race was held on the same week as the birthday celebration with only 84 runners. Over the years, both events have grown so large that they are now held on separate weeks. On July 28 of this year, roughly 20,000 runners were at the starting line. Among them were numerous world-class athletes, as well as US icons Meb Keflezighi, Joan Benoit Samuelson, and Bill Rodgers.

Many might assume that a race in Iowa would be flat. But not so much here! The 7-mile run begins with a steep uphill segment of about 300 yards to the top of an escarpment overlooking the river. After a brief, relatively flat section, the course descends gradually to a nasty little uphill before the turnaround, where it repeats the process in reverse, followed by an added flat 500 yards to the finish line. Although the heat and humidity at this event are usually brutal, this year’s temperature at the 8am start was only 68F under a partly cloudy sky.

 

 

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