Thousands gather for 45th annual Bluegrass 10,000

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LEXINGTON, Ky. (WTVQ) – Racers from around Kentucky and outside the state got a running start on the Independence Day celebrations.

On Saturday morning, nearly 2,000 athletes took their places at the starting line of the 45th annual Bluegrass 10,000th. Lexington’s Parks and Recreation Department says organizers and athletes alike said it was refreshing to see normalcy once again.

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“Its a dream come true that we’ve been waiting over a year for,” says Jessica Piersol, a special events manager.

2021 marked the 45th year for the Bluegrass 10,000th, which was made up of four different races. These races included a virtual run that lasted all month, and 3 in-person races. The largest one of the day was the 10K run which was 6.2 miles. A large group of runners included in-state and out of state runners, like this years winner, Logan Barrett.

“We got to the starting line and I turned to my buddy and I was like we haven’t been on a starting line in over a year I forgot what pre-race jitters were like and its fun to see people out watching the race,” says Barrett.

Katy Kunc, the lead female winner of 45th annual Bluegrass 10,000 is no beginner when it comes to these races. The 2018 UK grad has been on the New York/New Jersey track club the last 3 years. Running professionally and training for the Olympic Trials.

“I just raced the Olympic Trials last week in Eugene Oregon in the Steeplechase and made the final. And I just wanted to do this race just for fun,” explains Kunc.

According to these athletes, the great thing about this race wasn’t winning, it was about being together and enjoying an outdoor race that some may have taken for granted not too long ago.