One of the Southland's most popular running events is the Super Bowl Sunday 10K in Redondo Beach, which has become a yearly ritual for thousands of local runners.
Scott Muirhead of Race Pace Promotions is hoping to divert some of those race fans to Santa Ana for the Big Game Stampede 5K, now in its second year, which starts at the Crazy Horse Steak House.
This year, the Big Game Stampede is the final event in a three-event series that started with the Monster Dash 5K in Irvine in October and continued with the Rudolph Run 5K last month at Dana Point Harbor.
Maybe it hasn't reached the status of Halloween and Christmas, but Super Bowl Sunday has become a national holiday in its own right.
So why do people run before the big game?
"I think it's just a festive event, and people are going to be partying all day," Muirhead said. "This is just a way to burn off some calories."
Last year, the event drew about 500 entrants. With increased publicity, and because it is now the final event in a series, Muirhead hopes to draw as many as 1,100 participants. Providing a race alternative to Redondo Beach "gives people in Orange County someplace to go that isn't so far," Muirhead said.
Also making the run attractive is the fact that January is "kind of a dry part of the season, in that there aren't many races to compete in," Muirhead said.
From the Crazy Horse (just north of Dyer Road), the Big Game Stampede course goes up Grand Avenue before turning right on for a short loop through a business district, then returning to Grand. "It's very flat, and a great loop because there's no tight turns, so it's a very fast course," Muirhead said.
In addition to individual age-group winners, cumulative winners (by age group and even by city) for the entire Saturn Super Series will be announced at the end of Sunday's race. Cash awards will be given to the top overall winners of the race.
Also, a new car will be given away in a drawing open to anyone who competed in any of the three races. After the race, a tailgate party for race participants will be given in the Crazy Horse parking lot.