Race Report: 2012 Fall US Half Marathon Disappoints

Earlier this spring I ran the US Half Marathon in San Francisco, CA. When I told My Girl that I ran over the Golden Gate Bridge, she was so jealous she insisted we sign up for the fall version of the race.

US Half Marathon is now owned by Competitor Group, and although it doesn’t change it’s name to Rock n Roll San Francisco until next year, the mere presence of Competitor Group  is not a good influence on this race.

But had anything changed from the April 2012 race?

[singlepic id=1782 w=320 h=240 float=right]I really don’t want to waste too much time on this race, that’s exactly how disappointed I am. Although the expo continued its fine tradition of 15% off at Sports Basement, and the same exhibitors were there, and it did go smoothly, it was the first sign that little, if anything, had changed from the race earlier this year. In some ways, that was a good thing.. in others, not so much.

In fact, all the minuses and all the plusses were the same from April. Volunteers were still dunking their naked hands into trash cans of water (nasty!). Porta-potties had not changed location from the front of race start. Basically, nothing changed from the Spring race.

But, the views… Yes, those could be considered worth the trouble.

But most importantly… My Girl got a PR on a tough course with lots of hills![singlepic id=1790 w=320 h=240 float=left]

The only additional minus was the lack of police in San Francisco, but from what I understand that is a normal thing as they are hard to be found anywhere within the city at any time. This did lead to a bit of verbal exchange between runners, drivers, and non-entrants while crossing several of the streets during the race. At one major intersection, a bossy San Francisconite decided to take matters into her own hands to try and force cars right through the middle of the racers, causing many runners to trip, fall, pause, and she otherwise disrupted the race with no race volunteers or police to help correct the situation.

This, from San Francisco, I’m not surprised to have occur. I guess it’s just part of trying to run the race in one of the most… well whatever you want to call the city.

In a smaller race, I could almost understand. But I can’t wait until Competitor Group takes over this race with their serious lack of organizational skills and try to force even more runners to disrupt traffic in a city already plagued by horrible traffic jams. I wouldn’t be surprised if some runners don’t get injured next year from infuriated drivers egged on by others since there was little or no police presence.

So would I do this race again? Well, if it wasn’t for the draw of the bridge, I would give it a resounding no. In fact, for the full experience, you may have to stick with the San Francisco Half/Full Marathon, and even then I’m not sure it would be worth it.

Relax Rock n Roll Las Vegas… You now have company. The good news is now you’re both owned by the same group.


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