Irvine runner overcomes stiff wind en route to debut Avengers win; Mexico’s Alex de la Huerta is top woman finisher; Race culminates weekend of events featuring more than 18,000 runners.
ANAHEIM, Calif. (Nov. 16, 2014) – William Prom won the inaugural Avengers Super Heroes Half Marathon on Sunday, slaying a field of more than 10,500 runners and a challenger he couldn’t even see – the wind.
On a blustery morning at Disneyland Resort when winds gusted up to 22 mph, Prom of Irvine, Calif., outran the field, but battled a stiff breeze, especially down the stretch, to win the debut event. His time of 1:14:17 was more than a minute ahead of second-place finisher Fernando Blanco of Encintas, Calif. (1:15:46). Adam Henry of Santa Monica, Calif., was third (1:17:21).
Alex de la Huerta of Mexico was the first female to cross the finish line (1:22:42), easily outrunning Kellie Nickerson (1:25:54) of Albuquerque, NM who was second, and Lauren Reasoner (1:26:03) of Sahuarita, AZ who was third. Huerta, 24, seemed just as happy about winning as she was about just being here.
“It was awesome,’’ said Huerta, who won an Avengers-themed race in Mexico to go with her Avengers race win at Disneyland on Sunday. “Running here in California where it’s relaxed and beautiful, and running here at Disneyland? I mean, you can’t ask for something more than running and being at the Happiest Place on Earth.’’
For Prom, 29, who had only won one previous half marathon event, the race was, well, a breeze.
“It was a fun run, but the wind really picked it up along the back half. That was pretty rough,’’ said Prom, who had no serious challengers “except the wind.’’
Cheered on by Avengers characters, runners in this first-ever Avengers Super Heroes Half Marathon tapped into their inner super hero as they weaved their way along a new 13.1-mile course through four Southern California cities and traveled through Disney California Adventure Park, Disneyland Park and Angel Stadium of Anaheim. All along the route, they were greeted by cheering fans, music and live entertainment.
Sunday’s half marathon race was the finale of the three-day race weekend that proved to be super popular in its first year. The Avengers Super Heroes Half Marathon race sold out in less than two hours, one of the quickest sellouts in runDisney history.
In addition to the half marathon, other weekend events included the Avengers Super Heroes 5K and the runDisney Kids Races. In all, the race weekend included runners from age 14 to 77 and from all 50 states, plus 12 countries. There were more than 11,000 runners from California.