Finished with a half marathon personal best: 1:39:36!
This past Sunday, April 1, started off cold and wet on Vancouver’s Sunshine Coast as runners and volunteers gathered at the Gibsons recreation centre. As the timing gun went off precisely at 9:00am, the 21.1km half marathon was underway and off the runners went towards the finish line in Sechelt, where bright sunshine awaited.
The BMO Sunshine Coast April Fools Run is a beautiful point-to-point half-marathon course that passes through peaceful neighbourhoods, quiet country roads and through tranquil forests. But don’t be deceived; although the course is a net downhill route, there are many long hills to climb along the way, making this course challenging, even for a trained recreational runner.
The race is warmly embraced by the community. The course was well marked and course marshals along the route were at every turning point ensuring participants were heading in the right direction. It was amazing to see local residents along the race route to cheer on the participants.
Crossing the finish line. Photo credit: Laurie McConnell
The support from local businesses and organizations was evident throughout the race event – from aid stations to door prizes – they had the event covered. Even BMO came on-board for 2012 as a sponsor of the event, and employees from the local branch volunteered their time to ensure the event was a success.
For anyone preparing for the BMO Vancouver Marathon this is a must-do race during spring training. It fits perfectly with the Running Room training schedule too. It becomes a good indicator of how your training is progressing.
Runners, definitely mark this course into your 2013 race calendar. The friendly hospitality, fresh coastal air, scenic route, affordable entry fee, and a finishers medal all make this one of the most exciting spring half marathons.