Smoky Mountain Relay 2020 Rules

No vehicles over 20 feet in length. We have some VERY small windy roads and anything bigger than the typical 12 person transport van can’t manage.

To compete for these top awards, your team must complete all 36 legs in standard procedure. (Teams that have their Van #2  leave Exchange #30 prior to the arrival of Van #1, “Leap Frogging”, will receive an official time, but they will not be eligible for time awards.) If Van #1 has not arrived at Exchange #30 by 11:45am, Van #2 MUST LEAVE and Leap Frog.

Participants must be at least 13 years of age. We request that any child under the age of 16 have a parent in the van with them.

In the case of an injury, a team competing for a top award must continue the rotation of runners as planned. You may not swap a runner from one van to the other. Bottom line: you don’t get to put your ringer in to run all of the remaining legs. For those teams who are just looking to conquer this challenge and have a good time, you can be a little more liberal in how you divvy up the remaining legs, but please do not swap runners from one van to another.

Show up at packet pick up or the start with all safety equipment: reflective vests (2), flasher for front and back (2), headlamp (2).

Safety equipment is to be worn between the hours of 7 pm and 7 am. Teams starting before 7 am should wear safety gear.

The runner must wear a bib while running.

No sleeping on the side of the road; we would prefer runners sleeping in a designated sleep area. Information about sleeping areas will be posted online and printed in the runner’s guides.

Runners must run facing traffic or as otherwise posted in the runner’s guide.

Do your best to give us an accurate average pace for your team. We set volunteer shifts based on the predicted paces we are given, and if your prediction is accurate, there will be volunteers at the exchanges. We do recognize, though, that last minute speedy additions to your team can result in teams running much faster than predicted. We do not hold teams who are running ahead of the volunteers; however, if you are not comfortable with running through exchanges that are not yet open, we ask that you hold yourselves until the exchange will open. These opening times will be listed in your race bible.

We do allow teams to leapfrog if they are running more slowly than expected. The official leapfrog procedure will be listed in the race bible. The basic way it works is that Van #2 will leave XC #30 before Van #1 arrives. By recording the departure time for Van #2 and the eventual arrival time for Van #1 at XC #30, we will be able to make adjustments to the total running time in order to have accurate finish results. Because we do make these final adjustments to results, our results are not typically final until Sunday afternoon following the race. In 2016, we had approximately 20 teams who chose to leapfrog, so we do feel this is an important step in being able to truly recognize how teams finished.

Fill in the timing sheets after each runner completes their leg.

We encourage runners to support all runners on the course, provide encouragement, ring a cowbell, tell them they look strong. However, when you park to support your runner, you must have all four wheels outside of the white line. Be sure that you are pulling off in a safe and visible spot, and turn your flashers on.

It is mandatory that you support your own runners with food/water and encouragement (lie if you have to but make them feel better about their effort). You are the first line of defense for your runner if he or she has any problems out on the course.

We ask that you cooperate with and show appreciation to all volunteers on the course. These folks make a huge contribution, and your support and appreciation goes a long way in helping them have a positive experience.

Counting down the minutes until we see you again!

Big planning for 2022!



“This was my first (of hopefully many) years running the SMR. It was fantastic! It was a breathtakingly gorgeous course, well marked and well organized. What a great weekend – spending time running and hanging out with awesome folks!!” – Emily J.

“This is a super fun relay through some of the most beautiful areas in the Southeast.

You like hills? you’ll love the SMR!!” – John D.

“This race is one that I HAVE to run every year! Beautiful scenery, tough course, wonderful atmosphere. Our team starts talking about the next one as soon as we finish!” – Matt R.

“From marathons to Ironman triathlons, SMR was the most fun endurance event I’ve ever done – and the hardest.  Run the steepest, longest hill you can find. They run it 10 more times. This will be fair training.

To the race director – BRAVO on creating the course. I can’t begin to imagine how you put this crucible together but it provide some incredible views during a majority of the race. Such a well organize and well run event.” ~ Jeremiah C

“Fantastic event. If you have a cool team to run this with it will be worth the training and time you put in. There are some super tough legs on it. The smokies are no joke.” ~ Ethan S

“SMR newbies with a team comprised of members from three states! Truly an epic adventure.

Just one tip, run lots of uphill training miles, and then run some more. Amazing!!!” ~ Ian M

“This race is absolutely amazing.

The course takes you through some of the most beautiful areas in western NC and will test even your strongest runners!

The spirit of friendship and community will keep you going.” ~ Caroline L

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