Disclaimer: I received an entry for the Tony Banovich Roads, Tracks, and Trails Memorial Run to review as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review find and write race reviews!
I can vividly remember my first experience running the Missoula Marathon as it was such a well organized race with the friendliest volunteers and organizers. That was all the way back in 2015 and I have returned to the beautiful city of Missoula each year since to run this race. I’m ashamed to admit that I never took the time to really get to know the organization behind this race, Run Wild Missoula. Run Wild Missoula is a nonprofit organization that promotes running and walking for people of all abilities and ages, while giving back to the community and supporting local businesses. As a runner, their mission speaks directly to me.
Unfortunately the running community lost a integral member on October 14th, with the passing of Tony Banovich. Tony was the Race Director for the Missoula Marathon and Executive Director of Run Wild Missoula, encouraging all runners from beginner to elite. Although I never had the pleasure of meeting Tony personally, I’ve heard countless stories about what a kind, loving, and supportive person he was.
To honor Tony’s legacy and give back to Run Wild Missoula, BibRave, Event Southwest, and the Louisville Running Company joined forces to create The Tony Banovich Roads, Tracks, and Trails Memorial Run. Participants of this run completed 4.35 miles virtually, which signifies the average daily distance of Tony’s 1,731 day run streak. Each participant received a commemorative pin, courtesy of Ashworth Awards, with the “Tony Banovich Roads, Tracks, and Trails Memorial Run” logo and all proceeds were donated directly to Run Wild Missoula. AfterShokz stepped up to provide all runners with a 15% discount and a chance to win a free pair of headphones.
I was immediately onboard to support this run as the Missoula Marathon and community are very special to me. I had until December 31st to complete my run and let me tell you, winter conditions definitely made for a challenging run. I ran my 4.35 miles virtually from Spokane and the day I decided to complete my run we received a fresh snowfall of ~8 inches. I’d like to think the fresh snow falling during my run was a symbolic way to honor Tony’s legacy. I look forward to returning to Missoula, hopefully this summer, to run the Missoula Marathon again, which I will be dedicating to Tony’s memory.