TOUR DE PAIN EXTREME

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Bananas were devoured, shoe sole and skin met asphalt and some bananas came back up during the first leg of the Tour de Pain Extreme on March 29 at the Jacksonville Landing.

This was only the beginning.

About 500 racers turned up on the rainy morning by the river and stretched out for the 10k run. It was particularly important to avoid injury for this race, because there was also a same-day 5k race at 6 p.m., followed by a half-marathon the next morning, all part of the Tour De Pain Extreme.

Of the 500 participating runners, about 300 were registered for all three races, according to Doug Alred, who organized the events.

The cobbled-brick intersection at Bay and Laura St. rolled a few ankles and nicked knees as runners strode through the urban core following a police motorcade.

For some of the racers running the entire weekend, preparation for the next two events involved plenty of food and some good old R&R.

“I’ll probably get some breakfast ... go to the Maple Street Biscuit Co.,” Dana Heley said after finishing the 10k. “Maybe watch a movie — I’m running three races, I’ve earned it.”

Racers came from as far as Wisconsin and Massachusetts for the event, but Floridians took the lead times. Mark Burget, Jeff Wight and Brian Keno, from Jacksonville, Atlantic Beach and Fort Lauderdale, respectively, clocked in at the finish line between 34-36 minutes.

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