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home > races/results > usa: new hampshire > the irish triple crown—three races, three weekends in new hampshire

The Irish Triple Crown—Three Races, Three Weekends in New Hampshire
This innovative race series is ideal for spring racing action. Three weekends in March make for a perfect spring schedule, with each race followed by a terrific party—ending with an awesome parade. Running in Portsmouth, Londonderry, and Manchester, this is for runners who truly want to have fun!

The Irish Triple Crown—Three Races, Three Weekends in New Hampshire

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By Skip Cleaver
Posted Friday, 18 March, 2011

And they're off! There is a new race series coming to southern New Hampshire. This is an awesome idea
combining three Irish themed races on successive weekends. Three weeks and it will be over. Those
running all three events will enjoy a unique series tech-shirt. It all begins with the St. Paddy’s Five Miler
in Portsmouth, followed by the Pot O’ Gold 5K in Londonderry, and closes with the unique Manchester Shamrock Shuffle, which runs the famous St. Patrick’s Day Parade route just before the parade kicks off. Runners who complete the three-race series can participate in the parade and march the route with Millennium Running! The series starts with five miles March 13, followed by the 5K on March 19, with the finale—two miles on a closed Elm Street on March 27—you do not want to miss this series.

“Run the Triple Crown,” with each race having a distinctive theme. But I can tell you, the primary theme is to have an absolute blast before, during, and after each race. The variation in distance is intriguing. This series is an idea whose time has come, and you can bet that many a runner will be signing up for this innovative trio just as soon as possible. Each run and post race party will be really awesome in and of itself. The post race parties at the five mile and 5K will be really fun, and you can’t beat a parade and a few brews to close things out in Manchester. As a series it will be just an incredible combo. It will also be a great way to prepare for the rest of the spring racing season. This set will be about as much fun as you can possibly have while racing and training.

St. Paddy’s is in its second year, while the Manchester Shamrock Shuffle is new and one that will quickly become a classic. The three events fit well as on the calendar; and in only three weeks the series will be done! Southern New Hampshire and neighboring Massachusetts and Maine provide one of the hotbeds for running in the entire USA, and also a hotbed of innovation. Everyone who does one race will definitely want to run them all. But if you can’t run them all, simply enjoy them individually. Each race, each town, and each establishment has its own unique personality. Together they add up to springtime fun for runners of every level.

So Much to Like—convenient and easy to get to
All three races are conveniently located and easy to get to. The Shamrock Shuffle is in downtown Manchester with plenty of parking—a quick exit off the Everett Turnpike on Granite Street will take you right to Elm Street and Veteran’s Park. The Londonderry Pot O’ Gold is on Route 102 and short distance from I-93; Paddy’s is at the Pease Tradeport, easily accessible by I-95 and the Spaulding Turnpike. They are close to many runners in New Hampshire, the North Shore of Massachusetts, Southern Maine, and the Boston Metro Area. All three are an easy ride from Maine and Vermont.

The Triple Crown Website:

The Races—a Growing Tradition
The first event is the second annual St. Paddy’s Five Miler hosted by Paddy’s American Grille on the Pease Tradeport, a short ride from the heart of historic Portsmouth. Paddy’s is located at 27 International Drive, Portsmouth, NH 03801. It runs on March 13 at 10:30 a.m. This one is building a great running tradition, and takes place on the huge former Pease Air Force Base, now a corporate park and Air National Guard base. This event is destined to be a classic, and joins a long list of well known, well organized races in Portsmouth. It is a USATF-certified course, and mostly flat. Beginners and walkers are welcome. You will love the Irish music by the Celtic Tribe. See the Website for details:

There are a lot of ways to win at this one: Top Three women and men overall; top three in each ten-year age group; four categories of Pease Corporate Challenge divisions; cash “Spirit” awards, and a great raffle. There will be hot food and cold brews at the post race party, complimented by the live music. You may see a few bagpipers along the race course. You will get a terrific Irish-themed Tech shirt if you are among the first 500 to register. And the first 500 finishers get a pint glass in which to pour their favorite beverages. Most importantly, this race benefits the New Heights program for youths 11 to 18, “building competence, character, confidence, and resiliency for healthy, successful lives.”

What a way to start! Remember, you can’t run all three if you miss the first—be there and soak up the unique flavor of a great pub and restaurant, and a well organized new race.

One week later the series moves west to Londonderry for the Pot O’ Gold 5K, starting and finishing at the 99 Restaurant just south of Route 102, 41 Nashua Road, Londonderry, NH 03053. It will start at 2:00 p.m. on Saturday, March 19, a mostly flat and fast race. There is plenty of space and plenty of parking so all can enjoy the festivities. Registration and the post race party will be at the Ninety Nine.

The third week, March 27, runners will enjoy the traditional St. Patrick’s Day Parade and the new Manchester Shamrock Shuffle. The two-mile race will be starting at 11:00 a.m. followed by the huge parade at noon—on the same course! Talk about racing traditions, this will be a classic right out of the gate. The Race Director is John Mortimer, one of New Hampshire's all time great runners. We just found out that Nate Jenkins, formerly of UMass Lowell, will be running. Nate ran the fastest certified 5K ever in the state of New Hampshire with the Hollis Fast 5K, 13:46 (2007). He was 7th in the 2008 Olympic Marathon trials and is aiming for a better place in Houston at the 2012 trials. The race website has all the information needed:

The race is made possible by Northeast Delta Dental, and will be a two-mile run—all on Elm Street. Beginning and ending at Veteran’s Park, Elm and Merrimack Streets, the race will head north for a mile and turn and follow Elm Street back. The out and back will be unique, however, because 40,000 spectators will be gathering for the annual St. Patrick’s Parade, with numerous fine marching units awaiting their start. If you are a Triple Crown participant, you can march IN the parade.

Packet pick up and registration will be available Friday and Saturday, June 25 and 26 at Runner’s Ally on Hanover Street from 3:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m., and of course will be available at Veteran’s Park on Race Day from 9:00 a.m. But don’t wait; those among the first 500 get tech running hats with the race logo, and the first 750 receive pint beer glasses, also with the logo. Prices for registration in advance are reasonable with a discounted student rate.

You will be able to fill that pint glass at any of the participating bars (given tokens) through April 3rd, or simply party on race/parade day and enjoy the festivities. There will be cash prizes for the top three women and men and top two in each ten-year age group.

Millennium Running
The Manchester Shamrock Shuffle and the Irish Triple Crown were the brainchild of John Mortimer, Founder and President of Millennium Running, a new race and event management company based in Grantham, New Hampshire. They have a number of new events coming up in the Granite State and around New England. They got their start by managing the Millennium Mile, now a classic held in Londonderry, New Hampshire around the New Year for the past 12 years. Information on this new and innovative company is available at their company Website:
Or you can contact them by phone or e-mail at 603-512-1976, or at The address is Millennium Racing, P.O. Box 366, Grantham, NH 03753.

They Know Races—They Know Runners
The organizers of this three-event, three-week series have a tremendous amount of experience putting on races and offering post race parties. Planning and preparation will be top shelf, and you can bet that they know what runners need and want. This is a series by runners, for runners. This is not a cliché—these folks really care about the runners participating. They are dedicated to the sport, mindful of the traditions, and they are committed to putting on high quality races that are truly enjoyable. This is a quick series. Three weeks and you’ll be placing that unique classic T-shirt in a prominent location and/or showing it to all your friends and relatives. The series will be over quickly, but the memories and the enjoyment will be
long-lasting. Please don’t miss these events. The Triple Crown is surely the talk of the early spring season.



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