By D.E. Wheeler
CORINTH Two weeks from today, Mississippi’s second largest road race will be run for the 15th time with a smile.
The annual Corinth Coca-Cola Classic 10K will be on May 4, and race officials are hoping to avoid the bad weather that has plagued the event for three of the last five years.
“Hopefully, all the rain will be over with by May 1,” race coordinator Tina West said. “There was no rain last year, but our first big rain was the year we reached our record.”
Last year at a dry Coca-Cola Classic, 1,004 registered for the 6.2-mile event that weaves its way northward from downtown Corinth through residential areas, then back again to downtown. Corinth’s record entry total was reached in 1991 at 1,342.
“Sadly to say, we’re two weeks behind schedule from last year,” West said when asked about current registration totals. “But we’re hoping that by Tuesday, we’ll be even with what we had last year.”
West feels the registration totals will be heavy over the weekend with peopled mailing in entry forms trying to beat the April 19 increase from $12 to $15. The entry fee will not increase from now through the day of the race.
A couple of new things that West feels people should be aware of start with the event increasing how deep Corinth awards trophies in each age division. This year, Corinth will go five deep in each age division, up from three deep in previous years.
One overlooked thing about Corinth is its unique trophy an actual Coke bottle painted gold on a wooden base. “It is an actual Coke bottle, and it is empty,” West said.
There will also be a new age division this year, 70 and over. In recent years, Corinth has also given away a trip to San Francisco.
This year, Corinth will keep its trip give-away, but allow trip winners to choose their own location within the southeast. The trip give-away is open only to Coca-Cola Classic entrants, and they must be present at the post-race awards ceremony to win.
Other usual Corinth events include the theme water stations and watches awarded to each age division winner, and the corporate cup, open to full-time employees of businesses, industries, financial institutions and schools. Corinth will again offer prize money to the first five male and female finishers, and to the overall Masters winner.