JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -

For the first time in the race's 35-year history, the Gate River Run will limit the number of runners that can register for the 15K run.

Race director Doug Alred made the decision to cap entries at 20,000 due to a surge in registration entries for the March 10 run.

"We’ve had record entries every year for the past 10 years,” Alred said. “This year our entries are already up 28 percent to date over last year, with approximately 10,000 entries in the 15K so far."

Alred said the decision was made For the safety of the runners and to assure that there would be enough on-course support, T-shirts and medal.

Entries in the Florida Times-Union 5K Run and Walk for Charity will not be limited.

Alred said that last year more than 17,000 registered for the 15K with 14,979 finishers, and that entries typically spike in anniversary years.

Race registration set a new one-day record on the first check-point day, Jan. 31, with a 31 percent increase over the same day last year.

The River Run is Jacksonville’s largest participatory sporting event and is the site of the USA 15K Championship, attracting a top field of world-class American runners racing for more than $85,000 in prize money -- the largest prize money purse of any major U.S. non-marathon event.

On-line registration and information is available at gate-riverrun.com or by calling 904.731.1900.