- 3 miles/5K, 13.1 miles/Half Marathon
- Road Race
- Event Website
Packet Pick-up: The packet pick-up was held at Road Runner Sports on Friday and Saturday. I went on Friday afternoon and packet pick up was a breeze. There was no issue with parking because Road Runner Sports has a pretty big parking lot. Yay! Also, you don't have to pay for parking. With registration, you get your race bib, a nice "On a Beer Run" shirt, and a shiny Craft Classic pint glass.
Pre-race: Left my house around 4 am and got to the parking lot by the finish line with no delay. There was no traffic, no waiting in a long line of cars, and no paying for parking. Double hooray! Their parking lot was big so I had no issues finding parking. I parked, took the shuttle to the start line, and waited only about an hour before the race started. Because it's a summer race in San Diego, you won't have to bring a jacket to wear. It's warm enough that you can just show up in your racing gear and be ready to go.
The Course: The race starts out on a bike path, which causes a huge bottleneck at the beginning. The path ran west along a freeway (route 56) before diverting south. For the most part, the first half of the race is downhill. At mile 8, you hit your first big hill. At mile 10, you hit the "king of the mountain," which is of course a monstrous hill. At mile 12, it's a glorious down hill run and at mile 12.5, you hit your last hill because honestly, the organizers of the race really wanted you to earn that beer. LOL. There are also a lot of posters about running for beer along the course. The organizers definitely stick true to the "on a beer run" theme. There are quite a few water stations sprinkled throughout the course, but because of the heat, they did email everyone suggesting that we bring extra water just in case. I had a hydration vest on and only stopped by 3 aid stations and was fine.
My experience with the race: I wanted to finish around the 2 hour mark so I initiall stuck by the 2 hour pacers. Unfortunately with the initial bottleneck, I struggled to keep up with them. I rushed out too fast to catch up with them and ended up paying for it later around mile 10. (Tip: Don't rush at the beginning. You won't have enough energy for the end.) After the first mile, the path cleared up and I got into my groove. I was on pace until mile 9. I slowed down quite a bit knowing that THE hill was coming up. Unfortunately, due to my initial running burst, I was pretty mentally drained at that point. I saw the hill and said "F--- it." I walked up a chunk of the hill and tried to stay positive. I was able to jog up some of the hill, but I spent a lot of time just encouraging others up the hill. At the top of the hill, a spectator told everyone that we'd love what's around the corner and boy was he right. What goes up must come down, right? :) I ran my legs off on that downhill only to see another hill near the finish line. LOL. I ended up walking a bit of that last hill, but pushed for it when I saw that I the gun time sign said 2:00:20. I had no idea how close I was to 2 hours so I sprinted for the finish line.
My official time? 2:00:01. LOL.
Post-race: I got my shiny new medal, met up with some more people, and headed to the beer garden. There was a Nuun hydration station, which I was super grateful for. I think I hit up that station three or four times to get electrolytes. :) I stayed for the announcement of the overall winners who won their weight in beer (wow) and headed home. Overall, I had a great time and will probably do it again next year. I mean, I have to take another crack at "king of the mountain." I'm all about redemption. :)
Despite it being a hilly course, I think it's challenging enough that you will definitely pat yourself on the back after finishing it. It's a race I'm proud of running.