Record year for this year's Hannibal Cannibal - WGEM.com: Quincy News, Weather, Sports, and Radio

Record year for this year's Hannibal Cannibal

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HANNIBAL, Mo. (WGEM) -

 

For 18 years, it's been a tradition in Hannibal during the 4th of July weekend, but this year was extra special for the Hannibal Cannibal.  It was the first time ever the race has topped more than 2,000 participants.

It was a race that brought in thousands of people to Hannibal.  While the cheers and motivation helped runner, Mike Wendel, he said this race wasn't easy.  

 

"This is one of the toughest I've ever done.  15k is a hard distance because you're going hard the whole way and there are hills all the way through it," he said.
 
Wendel knows about tough races.  In fact he competes in marathons.  While those typically turn out big crowds, Wendel was surprised to see the same out of this race. 
"You knew Hannibal Missouri isn't the biggest town in the country so I expected it to be more like a local 5K race and I was surprised," he said.  
This was the first year runners could choose to run a 15k, just over 9 miles, which is something race coordinator Angie Wilcoxson said was a success.  

"We had a lot of runners wanting us to do a half marathon and we thought we'd start slow with a 15k this year and see how it goes and see if we can't move to greater distances," she said.  

Not a bad idea considering this course is anything but flat.  Hannibal is known for its hills and after running about a half mile up this hill, they have to run up Lover's Leap, which isn't as long, but it's a lot more steep and runners say that's what makes this a challenging run.  
"I came with some friends from Springfield that warned me about it and I didn't imagine it would be that bad," Wendel said.  
Despite the hill, he and many others were able to survive and finish the Hannibal Cannibal. 

All proceeds from the race will go to the Healthy way Campaign which is looking to raise money for a community fitness trail.   

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