Runners prepare for St. Jude Marathon as drivers prepare for detours

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Runners are getting ready for the St. Jude Marathon Saturday morning and drives are getting ready for detours.

As runners push past mental blocks, they might have to do so while getting soaking wet. Because rain is in the forecast.

"We have some contingency plans that we are working out. We will have those in place at the time of the race," an MPD officer said.

Memphis Police and race coordinators are already on top of that. They're making sure runners don't have to worry, whether they are doing the 5k, 10k, half marathon or the full 26-mile run.

"We ask you to use ride share companies or any other mode of transportation, because traffic will be restricted at that time," the officer said.

Roads will be blocked off to make room for the race path, that includes Madison, Second Street, MLK and the east side of 4th Street. So drivers might want to plan ahead.

"Those crowds swell almost to 50,000 people within the downtown core," the officer said.

The big race will give people every reason to flock towards the heart of the city.

We caught up with a runner who was picking up his race day jacket for the fifth year straight. He says he's going for first place this year.

'I've gotten better every year. I've taken second the last two years. I'm getting better and better each time," he said.

And he's been working towards his goal already.

"The biggest change is the course. It's entirely different. It's been good to get out there and jog around it."

For him, the race can't come soon enough.

Packet pickup ends at around 7 p.m. on Thursday and will resume Friday.

The race will happen Saturday morning.