This year I have signed up for two races that Dirt Devils Racing puts on annually. These two races are part of two different series’, The Animal Half Series, and The Grand Slam Progressive Series. So I thought it would be fun to get more people out there to participate, have fun, get dirty, and support a local racing company.
Here is the breakdown of The Animal Half Series. This is a two-part race profile, for the second part, The Grand Slam Progressive Series, click HERE.
The Animal Half Marathon Series is a collection of 4 trail races. These 4 races earn points for male and female runners placing in the top ten. The first race of the series has already passed and with that the chance to enter for the points for this series, but have no fear, those of you looking to run a great trail half marathon can sign up for one or all the remaining races. Don’t wait until the last minute because these races always sell out!
Runners who earn a qualifying finishing time in any of the half marathon races will be invited to the Dirty Invitational Marathon.
This race has passed but make sure to look for it in 2014!
Situated around Otay Lakes and the USA Olympic Training Center, the Wild Horse Trail Half Marathon traverses some of the most spectacular surroundings that can be found in San Diego County. Runners will park in the North Boat Launch Parking lot, and pin their bibs on. At mandatory check-in they will show their bibs to ensure they have an official start time. As the gun goes off, the racers will start on the Southwest side of Otay Lakes with sweeping views of the lake and the surrounding mountains. As the race begins, runners can take advantage of the flat, fast start for the first mile following the dirt/gravel road around the lake towards the Olympic Training Center. Once there the trail dips down along the lake edge offering well groomed single track on the way to the first of many footbridges and aid stations. After the first aid station the trail bends around the lake and continues on single track trail right along the lake shore. The trail remains flat and fast winding amongst the trees until aid station two at mile 3.7 near Otay Lakes Road. Depending on the lake water level runners will either continue along the lake shore or be diverted onto Otay Lakes Road for a brief period of time before continuing around the lake. Runners arrive at the turnaround and 3rd aid station and should pause to take in the view of this inspiring San Diego resource. The views from the third aid station are amazing. On the return trip, runners will be diverted to Upper Otay Lakes (and the smaller of the two) and then return onto the single track going back the way they came. The race finishes back at the Start/Finish area where you will be cheered and greeted by the Dirt Devil Racing staff and crew, in addition to family, spectators, and a Finisher’s Award Medal. After re-hydrating at our Sponsor’s Tent, or being tended to for any minor aches, you are encouraged to give that Victory pose to our Professional photographer with beautiful Otay Lake in the back-drop. Photo opportunities are free of charge for all runners, and their families. Photos are available for viewing at the Awards After Party, and for purchase a few days following the event.*
Course Description: This local San Diego Trail Half Marathon runs around beautifulLakeHodges right off of Interstate-15. The race starts at West Bernardo Park and crosses the new stone suspension bridge from the South side of theLake to the North side. After crossing the bridge runners head west along theNorthShore trail overlooking the lake. After passing through the marina runners enter a wooded area and run along the lake shore. This race is an out-n-back.*
Use coupon code KATEFOXY13 to save!
The event starts at the San Pasqual Trail and the first 4 miles wind through orange groves and local farms on a mix of single and double track trail. Cougar Mountain ascends 365 feet and most are capable of running to the top, with some needing to run/walk their way up the trail. The trail down the backside of the mountain is mostly single track and lots of fun to run. The last mile is flat again before runners get to the turn around point. The San Pasqual Trail is part of the Sea to Crest Trail that connects historic Julian to theSan Diego coast at Del Mar.*
Use coupon code KATECOUGAR13 to save!
Course Description: The Raptor Ridge half marathon is an out-n-back course that begins with 4.5 miles of flat and fast jeep road that winds east towards the San DiegoSafari Park and Raptor Ridge. The single track up Raptor Ridge is completely doable for stronger runners. Runners who are not as strong should expect to “do some hiking” up to the top. At the top you are rewarded by views of the entire valley. October is a gorgeous time of year and the view at the top of the ridge is impressive. As you continue down the other side of Raptor Ridge you really make up time. Lean into the hill and run fast down the opposite side as you make your way back into the flats and towards your turnaround point.
After the turnaround, running up the backside of the ridge is easier than running up the single track. The hill is longer and on less of an incline. Try to run all the way to the top as you feel your quads burning. As you crest the top get back on the single track and “trail-surf” all the way to the bottom. This is trail running at its best. Running downhill, really fast with great views all around you. Spectacular!
As you run along the rolling jeep road toward the 5th aid station with the mountains on your left make sure to ready your bottle for filling. It is only 3 miles to go now and it is all flat. Now you are on your way back. Farms are on both sides of you and you can settle into a nice, comfortable pace as you near the end. As you come closer you can hear the sounds of cowbells ringing and volunteers calling “Runner”! It gives you a jolt of energy and will allow you to speed up as you cross the finish.*
Get out and have fun on the trails! Make sure to check out The Grand Slam Progressive Series!
Use coupon code KATERAPTOR13 to save!
*All course descriptions are directly from dirtdevilsracing.com