Pacers Running Owner, Chris Farley, Recaps DC Half Marathon
DC Half 2022
Last Sunday morning at 7:29:50 as race announcer Marc Goldman was giving his last inspiring words to the DC Half runners the hair stood up on the back of my neck. I was in the corral about ready to #RaceTheDistrict - I looked over at Kathy who was on the other side of the fence at the starting line, and said, “We’re back.' She nodded and smiled. We are back. Back for a 2nd year of the DC Half. Back from Covid. Back racing the district with thousands from our community. And man, did it feel good.
Races have been the slowest part of our business to come back. I didn’t know what to expect from this years event. I knew our team would be ready. Lisa our events director has been able to keep the team mostly intact over the past 2 years. From the operations standpoint, we didn’t miss a beat. From this runners standpoint, we nailed every water stop, every turnaround point on the course, every transition area for the relay, every mile marker was in place, and the race timing was flawless. I even got a “Shout out” from Marc when I finished the race. I was pumped.
What I wasn’t sure of was how many people would run or how the DC Community would respond to our event. I really believe in inertia. Unfortunately for races, the inertia has gone in the wrong direction over the past couple of years. When you get used to not doing something, its just easier to keep not doing it. But not last Sunday. The community showed up. The field was sold out and the energy from DC was out of site.
It wasn’t just the fact that I saw employees and store ambassadors - it was the Pace Groups Elyse had in place. The NE Track club shooting off confetti. The Flash superhero at mile 10 blasting music and giving out high fives. My kids kindergarten teacher was running and cheered me on. The women who cuts my hair was running with her dad and yelled for me. And so much more. We were back.
Finally, I have to share this. It was an amazing race, but a sad day for the Pacers as were missing one of our Pacers family members. Bart Washington passed away in May. I thought about him and his wife Melodie the entire race. He and his family have worked for us for as long as I can remember us putting on races. As I finished I saw his son, Joshua in the finish chute.
With another year of the DC Half Marathon wrapped up and an appreciation for everyone who made this event so special I can't wait to race through DC with you in 2023.