Marek Wensel of Cedar Rapids leads the Men's Masters field up Brady Street Hill in the 2016 Brady Street Sprints. The two weeks of qualifying for the sprint event will be held on Pershing Avenue instead of Brady on the next two Thursdays.

The two weeks of qualifying for the 17th annual Brady Street Sprints, like the weekly Bix at Six training runs, will be held on Pershing Avenue in Davenport instead of on Brady Street.

However, officials of the Quad-City Times Bix 7 don’t expect the change, necessitated by ongoing construction on Brady, to present any major problems.

“We did not expect to be thrown this curve ball, but we’re confident it will work just fine,’’ said Ellen Hermiston, director of operations for the Bix 7.

The actual sprint event still is expected to be run on Brady on the night of July 27, as will the 43rd annual Bix 7 on July 29. Race director Ed Froehlich said last week that the city’s contract for the construction guarantees that it will be completed in time for race week.

It’s only the qualifying for the sprints this Thursday and the following Thursday, July 13, that will be held on the alternate site, beginning at 7 p.m.

Since there are only two weeks of qualifying, Hermiston said it’s likely that as many as five runners in each age division will qualify on each of the next two Thursdays.

Ron Egger and Gary Roberson, who oversee the sprints, said there shouldn’t be any problem doing the qualifying on Pershing, which runs parallel to Brady two blocks to the east.

“Gary and I looked at this last year when we thought we might be in the same situation,’’ Egger said. “It may actually be a little bit easier than Brady. It’s not quite as steep a hill, but it won’t be too much different.’’

The course for the sprint qualifying will begin at Fifth Street and end in the vicinity of 12th Street. It will be held on the west side of the street, allowing people finishing up the Bix at Six training runs to use the east side of Pershing.

Egger said he and Roberson also considered using Harrison Street, which is two blocks west of Brady, but decided against it. It’s a much busier street and the runners there would have been running against the normal flow of traffic.

“We’ll have more width on Pershing anyway than if we ran it on two lanes of Harrison,’’ Egger said.

Parking is allowed on Pershing, which might cause some problems, although Egger said it has not been a big issue the past two weeks when the Bix at Six course was rerouted through there.

“The city will put up ‘No parking’ signs but we realize this is a residential area and we may not be able to get all the cars off the street,’’ Hermiston said. “If we can’t, we’ll work around it. Gary and Ron have measured off the course and they’re confident it will work.’’

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