Fountain Hills ,
- 3 miles/5K, 6 miles/10K, 13.1 miles/Half Marathon
- Trail Race
- Event Website
THE SWAG: This race featured a plain white t-shirt with the race's logo on the front. Plenty of sizes were available as the race was VERY small. Also included with the race was an at home lung testing kit. A nod to the Linda Wortman Lung Cancer Foundation who sponsors the race.
THE RACE: A entirely trail-based event, this race took place in the McDowell Mountain Park in Fountain Hills AZ. For those who may be familiar with the park, the race took place on the Pemberton trail. An "out and back" style race for all the events the half marathon itself was an out and back then out and back again. I was not a huge fan of this particular style of race as it became a little monotonous after the first complete lap. The race course was also marked incorrectly so I ended up running 14 miles instead of my intended 13.1. The race lacked volunteers so all the water stations consisted of water and gatorade packs alongside the trail in random locations. Although the park itself was beautiful, I found the race route relatively challenging with a variety of uneven surfaces, holes and hills. The race website did not specify that this was a trail run, so I was relatively unprepared for this terrain and race style. There was plenty of snacks and water available after the race and a small crowd of race volunteers cheering on all the finishers.
THE BLING: The race medal was extremely simple and featured the race logo on a basic medallion. I was a little disappointed by this medal after running in the desert for over 2 hours. But still felt a feeling of accomplishment since this was my first half marathon in over two years.
FINISH LINE: As I mentioned, this race was extremely small. With maybe 30 runners total the finish line was pretty empty by the time I arrived. There were however a small group of dedicated volunteers who cheered me on as I arrived at the end.