It’s the 3rd race weekend for runDisney’s yearly race calendar; the Princess Half Marathon Weekend at Walt Disney World. This year the race weekend celebrated its 5th anniversary. Runners from all over the world gathered at the Walt Disney World resort to become race royalty as they ran the distance. Most of the runners were women who qualified as princesses; however, some men ran during the weekend and became princes as they crossed the finish line. Continue reading as we recap the race weekend.
The weekend kicked-off with the Fit for a Princess race expo where runners stopped in to pick-up their race packet and final instructions for their upcoming race. This race expo was not held at ESPN’s Wide World of Sports complex like normal. Instead, it was held at the conference center at Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort. Runners had their chance to check-out the latest in running gear and technology including the recently introduced runDisney New Balance shoe.
Some of the merchandise and display items at this years Princess health & fitness expo including the runDisney New Balance shoes
On Saturday morning it was the families’ turn to take to the race course. The race weekend officially started when the Royal Family 5k began at EPCOT. Kids and adults took their shot at conquering the 3.1 mile trek through the EPCOT theme park. Along the way runners were greeted by royalty with various princess meet & greets and props from the boutique of the princess collection.
Later that morning it was the kids’ turn as a series of kids races were held just outside of EPCOT. Children had the opportunity to run in a 100-meter, 200-meter, or 400-meter dash. Each child was awarded a finisher’s medallion to commemorate their race success. These races typically accompany a runDisney race weekend to promote kids health and fitness.
On Sunday morning novice, amateur, and professional runners took to the streets of Walt Disney World for the Princess Half Marathon. This was the main event of the race weekend. Approximately 27,000 runners headed to the start line for a 13.1 mile trek from EPCOT to the Magic Kingdom and back to EPCOT. In usual runDisney fashion the race course was dotted with several stops for runners to visit with princesses and props to match the theme of the race.
Princess & prince runners make their way across a bridge inside the Magic Kingdom
This year’s winner was Rachel Booth, a Florida State graduate, mother of 2 children, and a wife of a marine who finished the race in a little over 1 hour and 17 minutes. This is her second Princess Half Marathon win in a row and this year’s time was a personal record. Booth, 32 years old, edged out the nearest runner behind her by 26 seconds. After the race Booth admitted she knew someone wasn’t too far behind her, but felt comfortable with her pace to win the race.
32-year-old Rachel Booth crosses the finish line at the Princess Half Marathon in 1 hour and 17 minutes
All runners who completed the Princess Half Marathon were awarded a 5th anniversary finishers medal. runDisney puts extra effort into their medal design during every 5 year anniversary race celebration. This 5th year anniversary was no different. To all those who completed their race, congratulations! If this was your first half marathon, double congratulations! You were brave enough to start the race and make it all the way to the finish line. You should be very proud of your accomplishments.
The Princess Half Marathon finishers medal celebrating the races 5th anniversary
runDisney’s next race is the Expedition Everest Challenge at Disney’s Animal Kingdom on Saturday, May 4th. This race is sold out, but is one of the most unique races in the runDisney lineup with a 5k through the park and a scavenger hunt immediately after completing the race. We’ll have more runDisney race coverage throughout 2013 as additional race weekends occur.
Photos courtesy of runDisney
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Category: Disney World