For the first time, the event started in Pittsburgh, running the opposite direction from previous years; 40 relay teams comprised of more than 240 runners from 16 states completed the epic two-day, non-stop relay adventure
PITTSBURGH – The GAP Relay presented by UPMC Health Plan was back to a live start line with brave participants testing their grit and running the entire 150-mile Great Allegheny Passage. This year 40 relay teams, comprised of more than 240 runners from 16 states, participated in the epic two-day, non-stop relay adventure held Oct.15-16.
Teams of 4, 6 or 8 began their adventure in Pittsburgh on Friday, October 15 (in previous years the event ran in the opposite direction and started in Cumberland), starting their journey at 5:30 p.m. or 6:30 p.m. and continuing to run the GAP for 16-28 hours. Runners started the race with partly sunny skies with temperatures in the mid-70s. About halfway through the race, teams faced rain showers, including downpours during some parts of the course. The teams persevered and crossed the finish line in Cumberland, Md. on Saturday, October 16. For the first time, a 60-mile, one-day option also was offered that started in Confluence, Pa early Saturday morning.
Team DiMarco Workhorse III defended their title and earned their third win, crossing the finish line with a time of 16 hours, 40 minutes. Team Beers and Miles was the second-place overall team, completing the challenge in 17 hours, 55 minutes, and team Runner’s High Five was third, finishing in 19 hours.
Despite the challenging distance, many of the teams return year after year and were excited to participate in their fourth event after running virtually in 2020.
“I like to call it Christmas morning,” said Lindsay Aroesty, who has participated in the event every year. “It is that much fun for us and our team. I am beaming as we get closer and closer to GAP. It gets me in shape again, but also, I just LOVE our team. Everyone is easygoing. What an adventure it is.”
P3R once again partnered with the Pennsylvania Environmental Council (PEC) to offset the carbon footprint at this year’s GAP Relay presented by UPMC Health Plan, making the event one of the greenest running events in the nation. PEC worked with P3R and the Great Allegheny Passage Conservancy to estimate the carbon emissions from electricity use, transportation, and water use along the course. Using that estimate, P3R and PEC purchased carbon offsets through the Bonneville Environmental Foundation, which will fund projects that reduce greenhouse gas emissions equivalent to the carbon impact of the event.
“Giving back to the trail and the local communities along the GAP is so important to all of us working on this race,” said Troy Schooley, P3R CEO. “We wanted to make sure that we left the trail and its surroundings in even better condition than we found them.
Visit www.gaptrailrelay.org for more information about the GAP Relay. Proceeds from the race benefit the Great Allegheny Passage Conservancy and will help with ongoing maintenance and promotion of the Great Allegheny Passage.
P3R is the engine behind Pittsburgh’s greatest races. We strive to inspire any and all to MOVE with us. Best known for organizing the acclaimed annual DICK’S Sporting Goods Pittsburgh Marathon, P3R runs a variety of other high-quality races, events, and health and fitness programs throughout the Pittsburgh region. While many of our races attract some of the nation’s highest-profile professional athletes, we offer activities for all ages and ability levels. Anyone and everyone is invited to #RUNwithP3R! Read more at: P3R.org