Thursday, May 20, 2010

"Race" Report: 2010 Bay to Breakers

Let me start this by saying that I usually take races pretty seriously. My normal routine is to go to bed early and refrain from drinking booze or eating sweets the two days before--the night before Bay to Breakers I was out drinking until 1:30am.
This weekend I was visiting my brother at Stanford (he graduates in three weeks!) and neither of us had ever done B2B so we decided to sign up. We got put in the 16:00min/mile corral because it's first-come-first-serve and we signed up late so our plan was just to sit back and enjoy the ride. The morning of the race we got up at 5:45am to make sure we had plenty of time to drive into SF. We made some bagels, got into our costumes, and hopped in the car. By 7 am we’d snagged a good spot in a parking garage two blocks from the stop. We did a few shots of Grand Marnier, made the final costume adjustments and headed to the start.
Above is a picture of the two of us at the start (I’m in the halter top on the right). This is the largest road race in the country (around 75,000 people) so the starting corrals were made. Nevertheless, we snuck into a faster corral (12min/mile or something like that). There were thousand of small tortillas be tossed through the air like frisbees and hundreds of beach balls bouncing too! At this point we both realized how awesome this was going to be.  
The gun went off around 8 (no national anthem which was weird) but it took us quite a while to get to the start.  There was a guy dressed as a giant (7ft+) carrot who ran with the bulky outfit for the whole way!!! Once we started moving we got to see all the crazy costumes both on the course and on the sidelines. We even ran into some of my brothers friends in the first mile. 
A little after mile 1 we saw these guys, a row of bacon drinking Coors Lite!!! Soon we passed a bar selling jello shots and “beer to go” to runners. Definitely not your average race! 

After mile 2 the course has its only steep hill. As we were running up it, a large group in salmon costumes came running down saying “we’re swimming upstream to spawn!!!”
 They were followed by people dressed as grizzlies!  We continued on and saw bunch more awesome costumes. I took pictures of some, like the penguin with an igloo, but missed others, like the group standing in Christmas sweaters next to an artificial Christmas tree.  Did I mention there were hundreds of people running in the buff? Most had the same hat on, so I’m guessing they were part of a group. After running through city streets, we entered Golden Gate Park. The park was beautiful, but there were fewer people party along the sidelines there. 

Anyway, we finished the 12k in around 1:22. Probably the slowest race I’ve ever done, but by far the most fun!!! I’ll definitely be back.