Those who have been around the Austin running scene for a few years remember the Summer Stampede events. The last one – which we wrote about here – was August 2013. And while it hasn’t yet brought out Stampede icons Leslie Barclay and Frank Livaudais – Luke’s Locker and Cadence Sports are on their way to returning a low-key, low-entry fee event to the market.
Averaging around 20 runners over all 14 weeks, the 5K series held at the Driveway in east Austin concluded on Wednesday night with a course record from Saucony shoe rep Peter van der Westhuizen of 16:57.
“I was pleased with how the series went and think we got a great start on something here at the Driveway,” said Rod Newlin, manager of Luke’s Locker and co-event organizer alongside Gary Metcalf of Cadence Sports. “Both the Stampede runs on the trail and bike crits here at the Driveway started with a small field in the first year. Now the crit has 600 riders on a given Thursday night.”
If you haven’t been to the Driveway you’re certainly missing out. The 5K (it’s really 3.2) is a 1.6 mile loop with multiple straightaways, enough turns to keep you focused and two elevation changes – one downhill and one uphill. This week was my first to attend and I’ll certainly be heading back out next year.
Next Wednesday from 5:30-7:00 PM at Luke’s in downtown Austin is the series closeout party. There will be store specials along with all the closing ceremony festivities. The end of the summer races comes just as Zilker Relays looms around the corner. Austin’s gateway to fall racing season is slated for Friday, September 11 at Zilker Park.