This year was my second time running the half marathon and first time for the 5K. I ran the 5K with my 12 y/o and we both had a great time. She even wore her medal to school today. This venue is awesome. The race course for the half was great this year except for that tight jug handle turn to get to Davis Islands. The volunteers are wonderful and there were a lot of people along the course cheering. The post-race food was the best. I have done many races in the past and this race has the best post-race food. Kudos to Columbia Restaurant! The finishers medal was awesome as well. Thanks to GDCA for putting on another wonderful race!!!
AWESOME EVENT! I participated in both the 5K and the 1/2 marathon. This is the 2nd year that my company participated in the Corporate Challenge. (The participants tripled from last year!) The event was well organized and had alot of support from the community. The scenery is breathe taking along bayshore at sunrise. The cheers teams, music, and pace teams were all extremely motivating! Great expo and post race party. I would highly recommend Gasparilla!
First time running the Gasparilla race. Did the half marathon and I agree it was too crowded on the turns and was pitch black on the Davis Islands area. Better spacing and lighting would have better and safer. Had to jog the first mile basically. Overall a great event with a few hitches.
The expo was as good, if not better, than the Disney half marathon I recently did. The course was good, and the volunteers and cheer teams were great! There were a lot more people cheering at Gasparilla than Disney. The post-race organization was good, too. The setup was good for getting people post-race refreshments in an orderly fashion, instead of randomly placed tents that I've seen at other events. My only complaint is the continued lack of respect other people show you at a race. Walkers: PLEASE stay to the right! Let the runners pass you; this is for our safety and yours. As far as the course, my only complaint is the bottle-neck on the bridge to Davis Island. I have no suggestions for fixing that, unless the race organizers are willing to stagger the race start and reduce the size of the crowd that hits that bridge at once.
It has been a long time since I participated in the GDC race weekend. Last time was 5k in 2002. This year's 1/2 marathon was an outstanding event. The expo was loaded with vendors, the packet pickup was easy, and fortunately the weather was great too!
1st time doing the 1/2 M. Great course. Excellent water stops. Make the mile markers LARGER. Never saw the 5 or 9 mile markers. Awesome expo. Will be returning next year !!
This was my second year doing the 15k and I really enjoyed it. I am one of those runner/walkers that others are complaining about and while I think some of the comments are rude, I do agree that things could be done to better handle this situation. I ran at the start but found myself caught up in the crowd as I'm sure others were and WAS NOT ABLE to get over and out of the way of you runners when I did need to slow down to a jog or walk. It is my thinking that this race is for everyone and runners/walkers should be congratulated for the effort. I greatly improved my time this year and was able to run 7 mi of the course--I hope to run all of it next year.
My feedback is as a non resident of the area. Great event! I participated in both the 8K and the 1/2 marathon on the same morning. The event was very well organized and there was a lot of support from the community cheering us on as we went by, even at 6am! I love the route, the sunrise and the homes were was amazing. The expo was great and so were the post race activities. My only feedback as far as opportunities for improvement, is the lack of lighting for the 6am start time on Sunday for the half marathon. There was very minimal lighting while you were trying to get in the corral area. Myself and others tripped a couple of times because we could not see something in front of us. My final piece of feedback is the damaged roads through out the entire course. There were multiple areas that were in need of work that you had to dodge around to avoid falling. Other than those two things, everything was great. I would recommend Gasparilla as a must do race!
Ran Mich Ultra Challenge. Great weekend, no complaints, plenty of hydration and support along the way. I have friends of all abilities and age levels and everyone had a great time.
Only suggestion would be to seed field or assign start waves to eliminate traffic- Peachtree does this, it is still crowded but not jammed like it is through a good part of the 5K for many folks. 10K plus field is alot of people on a short course
This was my third time running the Gasparilla, and my second 5K. I have to say I missed the marathon! This year I ran with a new runner and teaching her was a wonderful experience. The whole event was awesome , well organized and went very well considering I was running with 11,000 of my closest friends. I have to thank the volunteers / planners for the water stations 3 in during a 5k was genius. If I was to suggest a change it has to be the water tables need to be closer to to the finish. Then the pictures afterwards.
Don't get me wrong, I absolutely respect people who walk or run/walk the 13.1 miles. It's still a long distance when walking. You are among the few who even think about moving over. It's one thing in a large crowd when you get stuck; it's different when there are five or six people side by side and they do have somewhere to go but choose not to keep a clear path for runners. The issue was far worse at Disney, and was only a real problem in a couple areas near the beginning of the Gasparilla half marathon. However, a lot of it could be avoided by walkers not crowding the front of the start corral. If you plan to walk, start in the back. This way, even the "rude" runners won't have a chance to be rude. It's a simple way to help everyone get along.
The organizers did a great job again. Just a few areas that need work on. The 5K needs to have corrals as there still continues to be non-runners (or runners who need to walk shortly after starting) lining up at the front. The 1/2 needs a better way to get us all on to Davis Island without the big bottle neck. And though it didn't happen to me, I understand the slower runners were held up coming off Davis Island so that the faster runners could pass through. We used to come off Davis Island on the other exit ramp taking us in a wide loop that brought us out on to Bayshore, could we not go back to doing that again?? Thanks to all the cheer groups, the entertainers, and all the volunteers who make the event the best.
This was my first time running in the 15k. The race was great, except my time was not posted and or recorded.Why? I was very very disappointed for not having my time posted. I dont believe a chip in the bid was successful. Did anyone else have a problem with their posted time? I've ran the 5k for 6 years never had a problem with the posted time, then again the chips were located on the sneakers.
This is a well organized and great event. This is my fifth time running the 15K and I ran the 5K one year. The elite runners in all the events are provided sufficient space to avoid being negatively impacted by us seeking PRs and just having fun. The pace groups in the 15k do a good job in letting all participants know where they should start. I never had a problem with folks giving way if needed. Susan H. should be congratulated on making this a Class Event and rivals other larger races I participated in Baltimore, Atlanta and New Haven.
My 3rd Gasparilla, and this was the best year ever, probably because of the weather. I've done the half twice (including 2011) and the 15K once. My 2?
Pros: Ample hydration; great support from locals (the kids were outstanding!); beautiful course; well organized race; great communication by the staff; nice schwag; plenty of volunteers (bless them!)
Cons: the notorious bottleneck to Davis Island. A suggestion would be to flip the course so the run starts down Bayshore, THEN goes to DI (if traffic will allow). By then, not only would the crowd have thinned, but you don't have that loooong view from Gandy back to downtown to discourage you at mile 9 (where was that mile marker, by the way?). Also, please put the water closer to the finish! I had to plow through medals and papparazzi before I could get liquid relief.
Good time though, and I'll probably do it next year!