Disney Half Marathon - A Cold Race
9, 2010: The
13.1-mile Disney Half Marathon, which began and ended at Epcot, had almost
23,000 registered runners. Many did not
show, possibly due to the weather, but 17,099 runners finished the race despite
rain, sleet, flurries and temperatures in the low 30s. The runners got a hint as to how cold it
might be when it started raining about 15 minutes before the start. The combination of near freezing temperatures
and rain can drain body heat rapidly.
The rain stopped shortly after the first wave started the race, only to
be followed by ice pellets. Winds
gusting to over 15 miles per hour didn't help the runners retain heat
either. The rain and ice pellets turned
on and off as the race progressed, leaving runners wet and freezing. Most runners managed to handle the weather
and complete the race, though blankets, jackets, and a warm car were welcome
sites after the race for most of us.
Chad Johnson and Emily
Mortensen, both of Rochester Hills, Mich., were the top men's and women's
finishers as runners, while Mike Fradera of Lakeland won the wheelchair
division in 50:04. Johnson won the half
marathon for the second time, finishing in 1 hour, 7 minutes, 2 seconds to edge
his Michigan running-club teammate, Sage Canaday, by 18 seconds.
Hunter Kemper of
Longwood was fourth in 1:09:12.
(1:20:58), the women's winner won by almost a minute over Elizabeth Foster
(1:21:52) of Ellington, Conn.
Other local top runners
included Jon Williams of Miami who won the Men's Masters Division in 1:18:09
and Ramilya Burangulova of Gainesville who won the Women's Masters Division in
1:22:22. The oldest runner was George
Braceland of Sanford, who won the 80 and over age group against 3 other
competitors at the age of 81.
For complete results go to Disney Half
Marathon 2010 Results.
A Personal Note: Races like this may be a bit difficult at the time, in spite
of the fireworks, the excitement, and running through theme parks in the dark,
but leave lasting memories for everyone involved. You don't soon forget freezing your tail off
running through Cinderella's castle! In
my case it was especially memorable, running side-by-side with my 18 year old
daughter for the third year in a row.
She may not have taken second in her age group like she did last year,
but I will never forget her grabbing my hand and us running across the finish
line together with our hands (and heads) held high.
Frank Norris. Copyright 2010 by Florida East Coast Runners. Reproduction or reprinting without written
permission is illegal.
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