This was a really fun race! This race is themed around Marvel’s Avengers (of course) and the whole weekend stays true to that theme. If you’re a fan of Marvel Super Heroes, this is your race.
The communication leading up to the race was a little brief, but I felt like they keep it pretty simple. I was informed about the important deadlines (submitting a qualifying time, booking a hotel room using their block, etc.) and where and when I needed to pick up my race packet. I need to note that I was really felt like they could have communicated better about where to park, and how to get there, since there was so many road closures in the area. I also was a little disappointed about having to pay the $18 fee to park that they normally charge theme park guests, since we’d be done running before the theme parks even opened for the day. I felt like they could have at least offered discounted rates to runners, especially when paying so much for the race entry fee.
The Expo was nice and they had lots of signage guiding you to get each of the items you had to pick up (waiver, bib, shirt, etc.). The Expo offered the usual types of vendors who were selling every and any racing-related item you can think of. I saw they were also offering a free speaker series throughout the weekend as well.
Getting to the start line from parking was a little confusing, as there was pretty limited signage directing runners. Once I found my way to the gear check area, though, it was easy! Gear check was super fast and simple (you must use their provided clear bags) both before and after the race. The start corrals are very clearly indicated and organized. runDisney does allow runners to go back to a slower corral if they’d like to join friends (no moving up, though). I enjoyed the pre-race entertainment and commentary from the announcers!
The race kicks off and heads right into Disney California Adventure and there are many MarathonFoto photographers to take your picture in front of some of the park’s attractions. The course then heads into Disneyland Park and offers photo ops with the Marvel characters as well as more MarathonFoto photographers. After leaving the theme parks, you find yourself on the streets of Anaheim. The course is clearly marked and the corners provide ample space. Eventually you’ll find yourself in Anaheim Angel Stadium! This was really cool to run the field around the baseball diamond! Lots of cheers and energy! After the stadium, the course follows alongside one of the aqua ducts, which was, in my opinion, the worst part of the course. The aqua ducts are (obviously) dry due to the drought, so all you see is the sand. It just felt dirty and run-down. Perhaps there’s an alternate route they could use to eliminate this eye-sore part. Eventually the course makes one more pass through the parks in into the backstage area, finally finishing near the start line. The finish line was energetic and really fun!
Worth noting, I found the aid stations to be rather small. There were maybe 5-6 volunteers at each station. I felt like a race of this size (~11k) should have larger aid stations to meet the needs of the runners quicker.
The medal was the coolest part! It was the “A” for Avengers and it spun within the medal itself! I’d easily say this is the coolest medal I’ve ever earned! The finish chute area includes all the post-race refueling standards.
Overall, I really enjoyed this race. The course is very fast and I enjoyed running through the theme parks and Angel Stadium. If they were to fix the aqua duct portion, this race would be even better. I would definitely run this race again. If you have interest in any runDisney race, I encourage you to closely monitor their website. Registration typically occurs roughly 9 months before the race date and historically sells out the same day it opens.