runners are a dedicated bunch normally ó letís face it, running
26.2 miles requires some serious devotion. But on Oct. 2, members of
Team Jenny will show what dedication truly means when they run linked
together during the Milwaukee Lakefront Marathon.
The group is
seeking to break the Guinness Book of World Records for the most
runners tethered together while running a marathon. The current record
is 47 runners, set at the 2011 London Marathon in April.
The world record
attempt is a fund-raiser benefitting Jenny Crain, a world-class runner
who was hit by a car near downtown Milwaukee in August 2007 while
training for the Olympic Trials for a chance to run in the 2008
Beijing Olympics. The near-fatal accident left her with multiple
broken bones and severe brain trauma.
In the four
years since the accident, Crain has regained the ability to walk and
talk. But the intense therapy that has helped Crain reach this point
costs nearly $80,000 per year. To help support her ongoing care and
rehabilitation, family members created the Make It Happen Fund.
supporters are hoping to raise $75,000 for attempting the
record-breaking feat at the 2011 Milwaukee Lakefront Marathon. Aptly
dubbed the "Jennipede," 75 runners, representing a wide
range of athletic abilities, experience and ages, will be linked
together during the race. Each runner will be connected by a rope
passing through carabiners attached to race belts.
runners of all levels participating so it wonít be a fast team, but
weíre all there to support Jenny," says Robin Gohsman, who is
leading the effort. He anticipates the group will run a 13-minute
mile, with a projected finish time of five hours and 41 minutes.
Each of the
runners on Team Jenny has committed to raise a minimum of $500 for the
Make It Happen Fund. Gohsman says the team members who raise the most
money will be awarded the lead positions in the running queue.
"We want to break the record by a significant margin to ward off
other attempts," Gohsman says.Among the members of Team Jenny is
Jenny Crainís older brother, Peter Crain. The 2011 event is his
first marathon. "The support has been overwhelming," Crain
says of fund-raising efforts to aid his sisterís ongoing care.
"This is an unbelievable group of passionate, caring
better than the chance to make the Guinness Book of World Records is
the plan for Jenny Crain to accompany the team across the marathon
finish line. "Thatís the moment that will be remembered
forever," Gohsman says.