Last weekend I ran the Woodinville wine country half and it was AWESOME. This is my 8th or 9th Destination Races wine country half, I've done a handful of the Napa to Sonoma race, a couple Healdsburg halfs, the Oregon half, and now this one. I want to try them all. All in the race was OK and I'm sure it'll only get better in years to come. I remember doing the first of the Napa and the first Healdsburg and within 3 years both sold out fast!
The race started at 7am at Chateau Ste. Michelle winery with an overzealous announcer toggling between raggae (Toots to be exact) and hip hop. The start line was pretty great with a lot of porta potties and free coffee. It was a bit sparse, I think all in there were ~500 runners for the half, not in relays.
The course itself was beautiful starting at the winery and then winding through Woodinville to Redmond. We ran along the water for much of the race along Sammamish River. It was a refreshing course as the Napa course runs past a handful of cow fields which are beautiful but stinky.
The finish line was rather quiet at the Redmond town hall. One thing I love about the Destination series is your name is on the race bib so people often say "good job Amber!" and at the finish the announcer yelled out my name. After the finish, I made my way to the free massage tent which was perfect. Great people offering free massage to gross sweaty runners? Good karma for sure. After a massage and stretch, I found my co-worker and we celebrated with a cup of coffee - it was too early for the free wine tasting they had lined up at the finish.
Both my co-worker and I placed 2nd in our age group which was super cool. We were supposed to get awards (free wine I think) but we had to head out so I could pick up the boys and the race coordinators wouldn't give prizes to people who weren't at the ceremony so that was a bummer.
I ran an OK race with a time of 1:33:46. I placed 2nd in my age group and 10th in my division which was cool. I'm hoping to someday hit a sub 1:30 ... must train more.
All in, good times. I'll do the race again next year to see how it grows.