Battle Creek's Field of Flight Air Show and Balloon Festival added a half-marathon and 5k run this year with competitors racing the runways.

Photo: Dane Robison, Time Frame Photography

Cereal City Athletics teamed up with Battle Creek's Field of Flight Air Show and Balloon Festival to give runners a once-in-a-lifetime close-up look at the U.S.A.F. Thunderbirds on the runway.

Before the balloons took to the sky for their morning flight on July 2, more than 750 runners gathered across the street from the airport in Battle Creek for the inaugural Battle Creek 1/2 Marathon and 5k.

The route took runners out onto the airport runways and gave us a close-up look at the Unites States Air Force Thunderbirds jets (in town for performances at the air show) before winding through neighborhoods East of the W.K. Kellogg Airport.

As the balloons launched it made for an incredible view as they floated over the course on their way to the targets at the airport. Enjoy these race day photos from Time Frame Photography.

Bonus Video: Kalamazoo Mud Run 2016