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How It Works

The Mass Dash is a relay race of 100 miles.  So you’ll need to put together a team of runners in order to do it.  Your team can have as few as 6 or as many as 18 runners--- a “standard” team will have 6 runners.  They can be friends, they can be lovers; they can be family members, they can be co-workers.  They can be hard-core or beginners; they can be fast, and they can be not so fast.  It doesn’t really matter, as long as they are all excited to spend a fabulous summer day with each other and hundreds more, taking turns running along a truly beautiful course from Mt. Greylock in the Berkshires to the University of Massachusetts in Amherst, and learning about themselves and raising awareness of and funds for the Jimmy Fund and Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, and our collective fight against cancer. 

The Mass Dash is comprised of 18 relay legs, ranging from 4 to 9 miles in distance, of varying elevation and through all kinds of places.  On a standard team of 6 runners, each runner will run three legs.  Beginning shortly after sunrise and continuing through Saturday morning, the teams will start the race in staggered “waves” based on their estimated team “race paces” (the faster your team’s estimated race pace, the later in the morning your team will start).  Your team’s first runner will fly from the start with a group of runners.  You and your teammates will heartily cheer her on, and then all jump in your team vans--- we recommend one 12-passenger van, with all six runners and all their gear in the van--- and drive to the first “runner transition”.  At this runner transition, your team’s second runner leaves the tranquility (yeah, right) of the team van and awaits the arrival of his speeding teammate.  An exchange of the team’s race baton is made, and your team’s second runner takes off like a shot, flying to the summit of Mount Greylock.  Your team’s first runner exalts, high-fives and hugs are exchanged all around, and your team van continues to the next runner transition.  Your team’s runners will take turns racing from each runner transition to the next, until all runners on your team have run a relay leg.  And then the first runner will run again, and this sequence will repeat.  This sequence continues for your team, without stop, until your team finishes the race, 100 miles away, sometime on Saturday evening on the campus of the University of Massachusetts in Amherst.        

Of course, there’s more to a relay race than just running.  You’ll also need to rest along the way.  And there are plenty of great places along the Mass Dash for this.  Take in the views at the summit of Mount Greylock and along the Deerfield River.  Go for a swim at North Pond in the Savoy Mountain Forest or in Upper Highland Lake in the D.A.R. State Forest.  And then finish with food, drink and music at the Mass Dash party at the UMass football stadium on Saturday night in Amherst!  No question that the Mass Dash will be a lot of fun.  It is also a challenging race, and we know that you and your team are up to the challenge. 

The experience will leave you absolutely breathless--- in more ways than you can imagine!  And we hope that you’ll be a part of the Mass Dash…

The Mass Dash:  Run, Fight, and Never Forget…