I arrived in my corral a few minutes after 5 a.m. and made my way to the front where I found my buddy Richard. He never says away from outlandish runDisney outfits so he was easy to spot on the front line. We were standing against the Corral B rope watching male after male make their way into the corral ahead of us. Something I’m still bothered by, but I’ll let you read my other post about that. After the National Anthem and the release of the first corral of runners we moved up to the start line. runDisney announcer Rudy looked out over Corral B and said “Corral A isn’t full of runners, it’s full of targets.” A truer statement had never been said. I knew that I had to bite through as many people as I could to get in for what I hoped would be a new 10k PR. (One that I had set just a month earlier at the Crescent City Classic) After some pre race entertainment from Rudy and his crew we were off on the city streets of Anaheim.
Coming right out of the gate I knew I was pushing hard, I had places to be. I did not anticipate the first mile having 2 interstate overpasses on it! I was almost immediately feeling the hills in my legs, but I kept pushing hard as we wrapped up the second mile crossing through the promenade and in through the main gates of Disneyland and right down Main Street U.S.A. The crowds were fantastic on Main Street and really helped keep adrenaline going as we ran through the park. By this point I had caught up with large groups of runners and was trying my best to keep vocal so that runners would shift over out of the way. They were there to take pictures, I was there to pick up a pretty plaque with the runDisney logo on it.
The course curled around behind Sleeping Beauty’s Castle and through Tomorrowland before exiting the back of the park and curving around on backstage service roads along the left side of Disneyland toward California Adventure. Right at Mile 4 we crossed through the other side of the promenade and into DCA. The course wrapped around Paradise Pier and around the backside of Cars Land. As I was going through this part of the course I saw fellow Mississippian Katie Murphy and snagged a quick picture as I ran by. I kept pushing hard and went by a few pods of people, one of which I heard, “I think that was Joe Raymond” as I went past. I turned quick and said a quick hello to my friend Sarah!
We exited DCA behind Cars Land and wrapped around backstage and to the finish in the Simba Parking lot. As we passed the Mile 6 marker I hit a dead sprint to the finish with 2 other male runners next to me. Friendly competition keeps us working hard. I came across the line in 43:39! (8 seconds away from a PR) With a lot of dodging and weaving along the course to get around Corral A runners I was disappointed to not pick up the PR, but still really happy about running my 2nd fastest 10k ever!
After the race I waited with Brooklyn for her mom to finish the race then we all went into downtown Anaheim for breakfast with a group of runner friends at the Original Pancake House. I’m not sure why it’s the original, but it was clearly the most delicious pancake house I’ve ever eaten at. A great morning of running friends eating all the pancakes and bacon after a hard run. It was a great thing, and a perfect way to kick off a full day of park hopping around Disneyland.
Finish – 43:39
Overall – 20/8,572
Gender – 16/1,193
Division – 2/106