Run the River Ultra Challenge and Relay

Petal, MS, USA
04 Nov, 2023 (Sat)


2.5 mi


About the event

Run the River Ultra Challenge and Relay hosted by the City of Petal offers runners a beautiful trek along the Leaf River under a canopy of hardwoods at Petal River Park.

Teams of 1, 2, or 3-4 members run or walk on well-maintained trails for 6 hours. The approximate 2.5 mile loop course includes wide meadow lanes and single-track trails where participants enjoy views of the river, lagoons, wetlands, palmetto fields, and train trestles.  

Run the River is a family and friends tailgating style event and open to everyone looking for an adventure at any level. Teams/individuals compete by finishing as many loops as possible before the cutoff. Only one team member can be on course at a time, but teams can complete the loops at any pace, using any strategy they like. A full lap has to be completed in the 6 hour time limit to be counted. There will be a cut off time to start your last loop at the 5:40 time cut off to assure everyone can finish in the 6 hour limit.  Each team/individual will have their own party/rest zone on-site. From here, team members and family can cheer for their runners as they pop out by the river and make the last stretch along the meadow to the finish/exchange.  Run or walk one lap or as many as you can, test your limits, run your first ultra distance or a few miles.  Divisions will include male and female for individuals.  Teams and Groups can be all male, female or co-ed.  

You don’t want to miss our second year of Run the River! So, grab a couple of friends and family and come party with us. No aid stations offered on course due to the short distance length. Teams are encouraged to bring their own food and drinks and refuel at the team’s party zone, but in thanks to our sponsors there will be plenty of drinks and food as well!  Friends and family of runners are welcome to come enjoy the fun with you!  


The registration reflects the same price for each registered runner whether you are running as an individual or on a team.  When joining a team, each individual runner will register under their team name and pay their race registration fee for themselves.  See below for information on how to do relay registration.


A map will be sent by email and posted on facebook race week to show parking and tailgating zones. There will be plenty of parking located near the zone site along the side drive way.  The park will open at 6:00am race morning and each team will be allowed to have one car drop off gear at the site parking lot if needed from 6:00-7:00am and then move that car to the parking zones right beside the tailgate area.  The start and end of the race will be in the same location as your tailgating site. There will be priority zone sights for our sponsor teams located near the race start that will be roped off.  All other areas will be first come, first serve.  Please note the city allows you to drop off and set up tents if you wish on Friday October 28th.  Just note that it is still a public site and could be tampered with if left overnight.  So please do so at your own risk.

You will be allowed to bring your own food and refreshments including alcohol, but we do ask to keep the area clean and be responsible.  We recommend you bring food and drinks to place in your site as well for refueling.  Thanks in part to Coca Cola they will be providing plenty of drinks all day, fueling for you at the loop start/race finish  as well.  Michelob Ultra will be providing beer at the race site as well.  Other sponsors will be offering snacks and food as well through the day for you and after the race. There will be no on course nutrition or fluid due to the short loop.  We recommend you bring a bottle to carry if you need hydration during the 2.65 mile lap.    Remember this is a trail run and there will be roots and uneven terrain.  Please be aware of your surroundings/footing.  We recommend high ankle socks as well to wear.  We will follow up soon after with awards as soon as the last finisher is in after the cut off.


We have studied other races across the country that do races similar to this format for 6 hour events.  Run the River will be timed by Diva Timing.  Individuals will wear a bib.  Each team will have a baton that you will pass to the team mate who is running the course.  Only one runner at a time is allowed on course at a time.  Once they have crossed the timing mat after each lap, that member will hand off their baton to the next runner to start.  Teams and individuals will win based on overall laps after the cut off point, but in the case of a tie, we will use lap times to determine winners for each division.  We recommend you wear a timing device if you wish to know your overall splits for teams.  A new lap cannot be started after 6 hours from race start. All laps started within 6 hours count, regardless of finish time.  Final lap warning will be given by timing.


All entrants will receive a race t-shirt, and swag bag. Locally made custom awards will be awarded to the top finishers. .  All runners that sign up after October 22nd are not guaranteed their registered shirt size at packet pick up.  We will place a second order after the race for remaining shirt orders and it will be sent to you by mail if we do not have your size.  

Packet pick up will be located at Grand Central Outfitters in Petal on their back Patio from 4-7pm Friday the 3rd located at 128 S Main St, Petal, MS 39465, as well as Saturday morning at the race site from 6:00-7:00 am. Teams are allowed to have one person pick up their entire groups packet at pick up with valid ID.


All registrants will pay the same fee for racing individual or teams.  When signing up as a team, you will assign a team captain.  That team captain will register first and set up your team name.  Each team member whether 2-4 members, will each go on and register themselves and pay their fee.  You will find the team name your captain assigned your group and register under that team. It will automatically group your team together once all registrations are completed.  If you have any issues with this, please email us and we can help fix your team in any way you need. 

Course Map and Navigation

Stayed tuned to our Facebook page for regular updates on this and the course map! We will be using part of the blue cross country trail that is well marked that runs along the outer perimeter of the park. The course will utilize both the cross country and mountain biking trails.  On race day we will have signs and arrow markers to have clear directions on turns.  If you follow the path and arrows, you should have no issues with getting lost.  We have marked as much as possible for practice with using the blue/white arrows that start at the main entrance.  Please note there are locations that are marked with Green arrows to shorten the distance that are labeled RTR.  If you follow the blue and green arrows, you should have no problem.  There is some construction once you hit the train trestle, but we have been cleared to still cross on race day.  Please note that if you go out to run the course before race day, when you get to the train trestle construction, follow on the side of construction to hit the main trail path temporarily and then take the first immediate left to get back on the gravel road.  The remainder of the course there after will follow the gravel road back back to the park entrance. During race day if you are injured on course and need help, alert the next runner behind to tell course directors if no phone on hand, or call our emergency line at 601-912-2431 or 601-520-2962

Make sure to follow our Facebook Page at Run the River Ultra Challenge and Relay to get updated information as it comes out!  We will try to have a course preview a few months before the challenge.

Races offered by this event

You have 4 weeks to prepare

Run the River Ultra Challenge

04 Nov, 2023 (Sat) - 07:30
2.5 mi
On site