The East Cobb 5K Road Race — formerly known as the Walton Raider Chase — will be held for the first time at Merchant’s Walk shopping center in east Cobb. The race, which will begin Aug. 18 at 8 a.m., had been held at Walton High School for its first 33 years.
Proceeds from the race will go to the Walton cross country and track and field programs.
The ability to increase the race’s visibility in east Cobb, along with attracting more sponsorships, was the main reason for the move, according to race director Jim Farmer. The new layout is a little more than a mile southeast of the Walton campus.
“So many people go to Merchant’s Walk, and we will have the businesses there pass out flyers, so it will be more visible to the public,” Farmer said. “It’s difficult to market the race when it is at Walton High School, since it’s perceived as an event for the Walton community. It will also make it easier to get sponsorship.”
The race’s 3.1-mile course will begin at Merchant’s Walk — starting in front of Kohl’s department store — before winding its way down Johnson Ferry Road and Woodlawn Drive, toward Dickerson Middle School, before turning around and returning to the shopping center.
“There are a couple of mild hills, but it’s a pretty flat course,” Farmer said.
Registration will be done online at active.com through Aug. 16, with applications also available on the Walton cross country and track website at www.waltontfxc.com. There will also be race-day registration up until 10 minutes before the race.
The registration fee will be $20 through Aug. 16 before rising to $25 afterward.
An estimated 300 people are expected to participate in the race in the first year on its new course.
“We’ve had a lot of people ask about the race, and a lot of sign-ups,” Farmer said. “We are expecting a lot of walk-ups on race day, like we usually had at Walton.”
Awards will be presented to the top overall male and female runners, the top male and female masters (age 40 and over) runners and the top three male and female runners in age groups ranging from 10 and under to 70 and over.