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Decision to come back was not a hard one

Challenge completed: the Jannetti’s stand in the Birdcage after finishing the Bermuda Triangle Challenge last year

Husband and wife duo Diane and John Jannetti had so much fun at last year’s Bermuda Marathon Weekend that they came back, and brought 30 close friends with them.

The pair from Lawrence, Massachusetts, only signed up for the 2017 race on a whim, and could not wait to tell their friends about the experience.

“Last year my husband and I were wandering around a race expo and came across the Bermuda Triangle Challenge table,” Diane said. “On a whim we decided to do the challenge. We went home and signed up, and we’re so happy that we did!

“The entire long weekend was so much fun. All three races were unique; running at night, running past picturesque churches and water views, oh, and that hill at the end of the 10K.”

Diane, who is president of the Merrimack Valley Striders running club, said that selling the idea of a weekend in Bermuda to the club’s 400 members was not all that hard.

“If you had your choice between running Bermuda or New England, which would you choose?” she said. “When we returned home, we told everyone how great the races, weather, and people were. Then we suggested to a few friends that we do a group trip. The interest grew so fast that I decided to mention the trip at our monthly general meetings. We now have 32 members running Bermuda this weekend.”

For the Jannetti’s, their marathon weekend experience was only enhanced by the welcome they received and support given to all the runners as they make their way around the island.

“I always talk to people who are running near me and everyone was so nice,” Diane said. “I especially loved running with Bermudians because they knew everyone along the courses. I learnt about everything that was going on on the island by the end of the races.”

It wasn’t just the memories that the Jannetti’s took back with them to Boston. Waiting to begin their one mile run on the Friday night they bumped into Michael Laplante, a man from Andover, Massachusetts, who also competed last year after making headlines when telling the story of his massive weight loss.

“We ended up seeing him at all the races,” Diane said. “He ended up speaking at our May General Meeting and he was one of the most inspirational speakers we’ve had. So I owe Bermuda a big thank you for that.”