The expo was small for this event, which isn’t always a bad thing. I did appreciate that it wasn’t crowded trying to get my bib and all, but with fewer vendors at the expo it did feel a little lack luster.
Morning-of, there was good traffic direction and the start area was well organized. Although I did hear that some people got to park without having the $10 pass. Volunteers were on top of it at the Solutions tent; many people were able to pick-up their bibs even though they were supposed to get it at the expo. I think this was nice because I believe there were a LOT of first-timers running this event who didn’t realize they had to go to the expo for whatever reason. LOTS of port-a-potty’s and a LOTS of photographers around the start.
Start went off with a hitch. Starting in the Rose Bowl was scenic and heading toward downtown was fun. Running around down with nearly 6 miles of out-and-back would normally bother me, but I really enjoyed seeing friends several times on the course. I did feel like there weren’t as many bands as other RNR events, but there was plenty of energy on the course. Cheerleaders did a great job too.
There were a lot of ups and downs on this course but they weren’t difficult. Several people (I know of at least 30) got PR’s on this course. It seemed like for every incline that was an equal and faster decline that made up for it.
Finishing at the Rose Bowl and getting to sit or lay down in the grass was like the perfect end to a race. It felt like having a picnic with your favorite sweaty friends, while Sugar Ray entertained in the background. The band did put on a good show, too. There were some food vendors which I saw a lot of people taking advantage of. And then to get back to your car was a breeze.
This was a win for runners, the city of Pasadena, and Competitor Group. I’ve put hundreds of miles of training in and around the Rose Bowl and so have all of my runner friends, so having an event here like this one was a dream for us. I loved that it was a smaller event for RNR (around 6,000 runners) and that the course wasn’t too crowded. The shirts and medal were both well designed and I’ll be proud to wear/display them.
Read about my PR on my blog at www.heavymedal.wordpress.com!