While I’m still a relative newbie to Half Marathons (6 under my belt, but still not a Half-Fanatic), I would have to say the San Diego Half Marathon is hands down the best organized and most fun Half Marathon, and for that matter, race in general, that I’ve done.
Starting from the time you register, you’re getting emails and information from the administrators. As, for the second year in a row, we were running the day after the Spring Ahead time change, we were reminded through email, text, and in our packets about the time change. If anyone forgot about it and didn’t show up in time, it was absolutely no fault of the SDHM team!
Packet pick up was amazingly easy and the expo was great again. Having it at the Broadway pier, and only a short distance from where we would be running the next day, was perfect! Well-staffed with volunteers leading the way, a short jaunt to the back to get our packets. Initially going to the wrong pickup spot (regular vice Legacy), I was immediately redirected to the Legacy table to get my legacy bib and shirt. Very nice touch!!
Race day was again perfect. Love the start under the Omni bridge! There were plenty of port a potties with small lines compared to some races I’ve done. An easy start, an excellent course (easily made it up Washington without walking…heck yeah!) and an impressive finish. I was wondering as I seemed to be crossing a lot of timing mats before I had even gotten to the finish line. Then, a few hundred feet from the finish line, I heard it, “And here comes David Duffield”. I head that, perked up and finished strong, watching my running buddy and me on the jumbotron above the finish line. Petco Park?? Who needs it when you have a finish where you see yourself, hear your name called, and end up in the Gaslamp!!
The after race was just as perfect as the rest of the race. Some complained about having to go up steps, and I can see where that would be difficult. It didn’t bother me a bit, however, and I loved the organization of the food. Water, milk, bagels, fruit, chocolate and on down to watch the rest of my friends cross the finish line.
As long as my legs will carry me, I will be a San Diego Half Marathon runner. I only hope some of the bigger races hear the positive reviews for the SDHM and learn from them! This will always be my favorite Half Marathons and one of my favorite races in general!!