Although the current bone-chilling temperatures make it difficult for local runners to think of anything other than shivering, there are warmer times and races ahead.
This week, the 2014 YMCA of the North Shore Road Race Series released its schedule. Registration for the 12-race series is free, but you still must pay for the individual races.
The races include the Chase the Gorilla Down Argilla 5K (April 19, Ipswich), Ring Around the Neck 5-Miler (April 27, Marblehead), Backshore 5-Mile (May 9, Gloucester), Father’s Day 5K/10K (June 15, Rockport), Fiesta 5K (June 26, Gloucester), Firecracker 4-Mile (July 4, Swampscott), Yankee Homecoming 5K (August 7, Beverly), Run the Goose 7K (September 1, Gloucester), Poker Run 5K (September 27, Rowley), Witch City 5K (October 19, Salem), Remembrance Run 5K (November 8, Haverhill) and Reindeer Run 5K (December 6, Beverly).
Participants are awarded points for each race they complete, depending on where they placed within the overall results and age group. Runners need to complete at least six races to not only qualify for the Karhu Series Finisher Challenge, but to be included in the overall series results. Runners who qualify for the series will have their top six scores combined to determine their final place in the overall and age group standings. Male and female categories receive points within their age group based on the place they come in for a race.
The series includes four challenges: Participants who complete six of the 12 races will receive a technical jacket from Karhu and Craft; those who complete all 12 races will receive a gift bag containing running gear; runners who complete all four of the Cape Ann Races (Backshore, Father’s Day, St. Peter’s Fiesta and Run the Goose) will receive a hero’s cape; and participants who complete three of the four holiday-themed races (Father’s Day, Firecracker 4, Witch City and Reindeer) will receive a fleece running hat.