This weekend marked the second annual Avengers Super Heroes Half Marathon Weekend, runDisney’s Disneyland race event themed to its Marvel universe. Sunday’s signature event assembled more than 13,500 registered runners who tested their mettle in Anaheim, California, setting records and celebrating their inner super heroes in colorful costumes.
The winner of the Avengers Super Heroes Half Marathon, Pedro Manuel Reyes of Nezahualcóyotl, Mexico smashed his way to victory in record time. Reyes, 25, bested the race record by more than three minutes with his finish of 1:11:09. Second-place finisher Nicholas Bowerman, 33, of Arlington Heights, Illinois finished in 1:11:48 and 26-year-old Chris Trebilcock of Tampa, Florida came in third place at 1:14:45.
“It was a very nice race,” said Reyes in a media statement. “I really enjoyed all the support from the crowds of children, families and Disney cast cheering all along the course.”
Top women finisher Alex de la Huerta, 25, of Mexico City won the Avengers half marathon for the second year in a row. She bested last year’s time by16 seconds with her 1:22:27 finish. Kellie Nickerson, 29, of Albuquerque, New Mexico, took second for the second year in a row with 1:28:29. Jenessa Rose, 25, of Carlsbad, California, finished third at 1:28.58.
“I could not be happier with winning again this year,’’ said Huerta, returning to defend her title. “I always enjoy the great atmosphere of running in this race, the cheer of the fans all along the way makes me feel as if I am not even in a competition and I can just have fun, which is incredible.”
Runners were cheered on by Avenger characters at the start, many of whom embraced the race as the chance to represent their favorite heroes. Marvel characters from recent movie and television fame – from Captain America and Thor to Ant-Man to Spider-Man to “Guardians of the Galaxy”– were present in the field of participants. Disney characters also made appearances on the course. As did other super hero characters, with some runners choosing to appear as character from the DC Universe. All were welcome in the spirit of runDisney fun.
The Avengers Super Heroes Half Marathon took runners Disney California Adventure Park, Disneyland Park, Angel Stadium and four Orange County cities. The 13.1-mile course starts at Disneyland Resort before heading out to the local sights. The final stretch goes past Disney’s Paradise Pier Hotel and the Disneyland Hotel for a picturesque and exciting finish.
The 2015 Avengers Super Heroes Half Marathon also marked the first year for runDisney’s Infinity Gauntlet Challenge, in which registered participants took on both the Saturday’s Captain America 10K race and Sunday’s half marathon. Those who completed both races earned a special Infinity Gauntlet Challenge medal in addition to the respective race medals.
The Avengers Super Heroes Half Marathon Weekend is a three-day race weekend. In addition to the half marathon and 10K, the weekend includes an Avengers Super Heroes 5K, runDisney Kids Races of various distances, and a Health & Fitness Exp. The 2015 race weekend attracted runs from all 50 states and over 25 countries.
Next year’s Avengers Super Heroes Half Marathon Weekend will be held Nov. 10-Nov. 13, 2016.