Benita Johnson returns to defend title at 31st Annual Freihofer's Run for Women May 30th in Albany, NY
SUBWAY Restaurants and CSC Join IAAF Silver Label Event As Sponsors
ALBANY, NY (April 22, 2009) — Australia’s Benita Johnson will attempt to become only the second woman in the history of the Freihofer’s Run for Women to win four consecutive titles when the 31st edition of the storied 5 km road race takes place Saturday, May 30 at 10:15 a.m. in downtown Albany, N.Y.
Johnson, a three-time Olympian (’00, 5000m; ’04, 10000m; ’08, marathon) and former world cross-county champion, will try to emulate American Lynn Jennings’ four victories (1993-1996) on the scenic course that weaves through New York’s historic capital city.
"We’re thrilled to have Benita back in Albany," said Event Director George Regan. "If she claims her fourth title here, she will hold the second greatest number of victories behind Lynn Jennings, who won eight titles (six in the 5 km race and two in 10 km edition) between 1987 and 1998."
"This race holds a truly special place in my heart," added Johnson, who hit the tape in last year’s race in a time of 15:46. "Each year I experience a huge rush of excitement and adrenalin. First when I step into the classrooms around the community to talk to the kids and then second when I stand on that start line looking up the big hill ready for a tough race ahead against the world's best athletes."
Regan also announced that SUBWAY® Restaurants and CSC have signed on as corporate sponsors. As part of its agreement, SUBWAY will offer a $5 off race entry coupon at each of its 105 locations located throughout the Albany metro area.
"The Capital Region SUBWAY Restaurants are delighted to be partnering with the Freihofer's Run for Women," said Franchisee Board Chairman Eddie Hicks. "Our sponsorship is a perfect fit, since it reinforces our brand tradition of offering customers a selection of healthier menu items. We also hope runners will pick up an entry form when they are here."
"We’re also delighted to welcome CSC as a sponsor," said Regan. The global leader in providing technology-enabled solutions and services is no stranger to the state of New York as it has been here for more than 22 years working with the Department of Health to serve Medicaid recipients and healthcare providers of the state. "CSC also will become an integral part of our greening effort. By serving runners with water in biodegradable paper cups, CSC staff will help prevent thousands of plastic bottles from ending up in the landfill."
As the weeks count down to the starting gun, organizers are busy building another stellar elite field for the event, which last year joined the Boston Marathon, New York City Marathon and Chicago Marathon as the only road races in the United States to be awarded label status by the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF). An IAAF labeled race satisfies a number of important criteria concerning course measurement, safety, medical standards and media services.
The only 5 km road race in the U.S. to hold the "silver" label designation, the Freihofer’s Run for Women offers $27,000 in prize money with the winner being awarded $10,000. This year's 31st edition will also include the USA10K Open and Junior Race Walk Championships featuring some of the nation's top race walkers.
A 30-minute Freihofer's Run for Women TV special will air Saturday, May 30 at 10:30 p.m. on FOX23/ WXXA.
To register for the Freihofer’s Run for Women, or for more information about the Freihofer’s Run for Women, the Freihofer’s Community Walk, Freihofer’s Kids’ Run and CapitalCare Health & FitnessExpo, visit freihofersrun.com. From the home page, you can also link the event’s Facebook and Twitter pages.
Event sponsors include the Charles Freihofer Baking Company, Price Chopper Supermarkets, The City of Albany, Fox 23 News, B95.5, the Times Union, host hotel 74 State, CSC and Subway.