Although Hurricane Irma left her mark on the local Coastal Georgia area, including The Ford Plantation, the 2nd Annual Tour de Ford is set to begin at 8 a.m. Saturday.
Runners this year will be treated to some wonderful surprises this year along the course. The award-winning Richmond Hill High School band will provide live music along the course at different mile markers. The course will also include a stunning display of vintage cars, provided by the Savannah Model A Club, who this year has also invited other coastal area clubs to join in, including a group of Model As & Ts from the Live Oak club, and another group coming from Jacksonville, Fla. In addition, the Finisher Medals have been updated and all runners will receive special hand-embroidered towels from Towels by Jen.
The race proceeds this year will go to the Richmond Hill High School band. The band's booster club plans to use the funds to purchase much-needed instruments, as it is one of the largest student organizations on campus, second only to the JROTC cadets.
The number of runners this year has already increased over last year, according to Ron and Sandra Elliott of Georgia Game Changers Running Company, with just a few days left for runners to sign up.
"We have seen excitement build this year, after the success of last year's inaugural race in August of 2016," said Sandra Elliott. "We believe that the later race date is a plus, but also the fact that last year's race had so many positive features and comments. The Ford Plantation staff, as well as the Ford residents, have also provided unbelievable support of the race.”
Top runners this year in both the regular and masters' group will be getting great prize packages, including a pair of shoes from On Running, socks from Feetures, and a Generation Ucan pack, all sponsors of this year's race.
The number of community sponsors this year has been amazing, according to Elliott. This is due to the hard work by band boosters club, which has been deeply involved in the planning of the race.
United Community Financial Services is once again the title sponsor of the race. Additionally, local businesses have pledged their support including Dr. Courtney Camp Highsmith, who is this year's gold level sponsor.
The entire list of sponsors are as follows:
Title Sponsor: United Community Financial Services
Gold Sponsor: Courtney Camp Highsmith, DMD
Silver Sponsor: Veteran's United Home Loans, McDonald's, Georgia Game Changers Running Company, Teresa Cowart Team, On Running, Generation UCAN
Bronze Sponsors: Chatham Parkway Lexus, Sheila Doney, Randy & Shannon Bocoock, The Bocoock Team, Caesarstone, McAljon Fabrications, Omega Construction, Richmond Hill Pharmacy, Norwood Construction, Navy Federal, Consumed Church and Towels by Jen
Mile Sponsors: Smokin Pig, Palmer Chiropractic, Southern Image Restaurant, Radiant Skin Care, Coastal Endodontics, Cross Fit High Tide, Wrapper Z Delight, Southeast Bank, Suites at Station Exchange, Drs. Broderick, Dusek and DeLeon, LuluRoe Aura Welch, River Street Restaurant Group, Magnolia Bay Photography, Century 21 Ways Station, Little Caesar's Pizza Richmond Hill, and Local on 17.
Packet pick up is set for Friday from, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. at Georgia Game Changers Running Company. There is no race day registration, but race registration is available in store through Friday and online at savannahraces.com through Thursday night.
For questions about the race, please contact Georgia Game Changers Running Company at (912) 445-2163.