Bob Jones, James Clemens principals running, raising funds for St. Jude Marathon Relay

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MADISON, Ala. (WHNT) - Over the last few years, the cross-city rivalry between Bob Jones and James Clemens has intensified. This fall, school administrators have turned that growing competition into a worth cause.

Ten principals from throughout Madison City Schools are running in this year's St. Jude Memphis Marathon Relay. Its format features teams of five runners competing in various legs of the 26.2 mile relay.

For some, it is a chance to get reacquainted with their running shoes.

"I had to talk to people that actually had, you know, been running in the last ten years to get some tips," said James Clemens Principal Brian Clayton.

The district's fundraising effort for the children's hospital has been going on for more than a decade, but now it is pitting east side versus west side.

"This was sort of a way to get more people involved, plus throw in a little bit of a competitive side to it," said Clayton.

The principals from the school system's two feeder patterns are going head-to-head both on the pavement and in the pocketbook, racing for the most funds and the fastest finish.

Through Tuesday, the Jets raised $18,464, while the Patriots raised $17,647.

"And the majority of that is from our students," said Bob Jones Principal Sylvia Lambert.

Throw in the central office supporters at $20,429 and the district has raised $56, 540, so far, to help St. Jude patients. The runners will also get to see their impact first hand.

"When you're running this marathon, you see children that are going through cancer treatments sitting along the side cheering you on," said Lambert.

And that is incredible motivation, no matter which team you support.

The race is scheduled for December 5 in Memphis. If you would like to donate to one of the teams, click here.

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