Disney Princess Half Marathon Weekend Recap

Friday, March 01, 2013

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.  In unusual fashion this race expo was not held at ESPN’s Wide World of Sports complex.  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. 

The runDisney New Balance shoe has been a hot item at all of the race expos

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, 400 meter or The Mickey Mile 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 took 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. 

Running down Main St. USA towards Cinderella's Castle is always a race highlight and adrenaline rush. 

This year’s winner was Rachel Booth.  A Florida State graduate, mother of 2 children, and a wife of a marine finished the race in a little over 1 hour and 17 minutes; a personal record.  This was her second year in a row winning the Princess Half Marathon.  Booth, 32 years old, edged 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. 

Rachel Booth crosses the finish line as the winner of the Princess Half Marathon

All runners who completed the Princess Half Marathon were awarded a 5th anniversary finishers medal.  runDisney puts extra effort in their medal design during every 5 year anniversary celebrations.  This 5 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 5th anniversary Princess Half Marathon medal awaited finishers of the 13.1 mile trek  

runDisney’s next race is the Expedition Everest Challenge at Disney’s Animal Kingdom on Saturday, May 4th.  This race is full, but 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. 

Team Studios Central Update

A number of Team Studios Central runners participated in this year’s Princess Half Marathon.  The team gathered at the Walt Disney World resort for a team meet & greet and to run in their respective races.  During their meet on Friday afternoon at the Wilderness Lodge Villas the team was met by two special guests.  Michelle and Mike from the Mickey Miles Podcast attended the meet with the team.  A special thank you to both of them for taking time out of their busy day to meet with our team. 

Team Studios Central runners Courtney Ann MacLaren, Shelley Benhoff, & Yulady Rodriguez-Guerrero wish other Team SC runners good luck! 

The big news of the weekend for Team Studios Central was a few runners were racing in their first ever half marathon.  A BIG congratulations to Yulady Rodriguez-Guerrero, Shelley Benhoff, and Courtney Ann MacLaren.  Taking that big step to your first half marathon is brave and inspiring. 

Another congratulations to Megan Annunziata who finished all 5 of the Princess Half Marathons.  She is considered a “Perfect Princess” and rightfully so. 

Team SC runner Megan Annunziata kisses her bling after completing her 5th Princess Half Marathon, a Perfect Princess! 

And finally congratulations to Amanda North and Sarah Orr who finished the race in very respectable fashion as they continued their running journey.  Congratulations to all of the Team SC runners who pushed themselves to conquer the 13.1 mile distance.  Wear your princess bling proudly! 

If you are interested in joining Team Studios Central you can find out how right here.  We'd love to have you join our team. 

Photos courtesy of runDisney and Team Studios Central 

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About this column

Aaron DelPrince looks at the various activities you and your family can experience at Walt Disney World


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