Syracuse Online

Corporate Challenge

Published August 4, 2003 in The Post-Standard.

By Dr Kamal Jabbour, Contributing Writer

The twenty-second running of the Corporate Challenge, formally known as the JP Morgan Chase Corporate Challenge, will take place Tuesday August 5 at 6:25pm. One of the original five corporate challenge races, when it was the Manufacturers Hanover Corporate Challenge, Syracuse.s largest footrace has grown to 6,147 runners from 260 companies, and remains one of the largest ten corporate challenge races in the country.

As in previous years, the race course runs out and back from Griffin Stadium in Liverpool along the Onondaga Lake Parkway. Officially certified at 3.5 miles, the flat course provides elite runners a fast race, and the populous an easy jog down the parkway. With such a large field of thousands of runners and the traditionally warm weather on the first Tuesday in August, a safe and enjoyable run takes precedent over setting fast times.

The following race day safety tips apply equally to seasoned competitors and to first-time participants:

  • drink plenty of water before, during and after the race;
  • avoid alcohol and coffee on race day, due to their diuretic effect;
  • eat a light meal early afternoon, and avoid fatty and salty foods before the race;
  • wear loose, light-colored clothing, such as shorts and singlets;
  • apply sunscreen to protect the skin against sunburn;
  • arrive to the park early, and stay in the shade;
  • do not run if you feel sick, or if you have a fever;
  • do not run with, or in front of, a baby stroller;
  • leave your dogs and lamas at home.

Race courtesy requires that only registered runners participate in the race. Also, slower runners and walkers should line up far behind the racers. If you must walk during the race, please step out of the way of the runners to avoid collisions.

Spectators and runners alike will encounter additional travel challenges this year, as they navigate the evening rush hour towards the race. The Onondaga Lake Parkway will be closed Tuesday afternoon starting at 1pm, diverting traffic to Old Liverpool Road. In addition, construction on the Skateboard Park and the Boundless Playground, and the relocation of baseball fields, have significantly reduced the amount of available parking space.

As in past years, the organizers encourage participants and spectators to park at the Carousel Center and take the free shuttle to Griffin Field. Shuttle buses run continuously between 4:30pm and 6:00pm, and resume 7:15pm to 9pm.

In a shift away from bringing distance running celebrities to Corporate Challenge races, this year.s honorary race starter will be former football coach Dick MacPherson, and this year.s race beneficiary will be the Joslin Diabetes Center.

© 2003 The Post-Standard.

Kamal Jabbour runs and writes on the hills of Pompey, New York. His RUNNING Column appears in The Post-Standard on Mondays. Dr.J. created, webcasting live Every Lap of Every Race. He receives email at