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Disney Endurance Series Archives

January 23, 2013

Angela Escay Flies Through Tinker Bell Half Marathon, Sets Course Record

Actor Sean Astin, "Biggest Loser" winner Ali Vincent among the more than
21,000 runners who took part in women-focused weekend of events
centered on health, fitness and active lifestyles

ANAHEIM, Calif. (Jan. 20, 2013) - Angela Escay, from Carmichael, Calif., returned for her first race in three years following ankle surgery to win the Tinker Bell Half Marathon at Disneyland Resort in Anaheim.

Escay's winning effort, 1:24:10, also set a course record for the second annual women-focused event at Disneyland. Last year, Kellie Nickerson won the inaugural event with a 1:27:52.

"It was a good feeling to get back out there and do what I love to do," Escay said. "The course was a lot of fun, run through the park. It was my first run back in three years."

"Rudy" and "The Lord of the Rings" actor Sean Astin and former "Biggest Loser" winner and Live Well network host Ali Vincent were among the more than 14,000 registered runners for Sunday's half marathon.

The Tinker Bell Half Marathon, hosted by Disneyland Resort and the city of Anaheim, led runners through a character-filled 13.1-mile course at Disneyland and Disney California Adventure parks, as well as by several city of Anaheim landmarks. Runners received a commemorative Tinker Bell "wings" medal.

More than 21,000 runners participated in the weekend's events, which were geared toward health, fitness and active lifestyles for women. Along with Sunday's Tinker Bell Half Marathon, the weekend also included The Never Land 5K and runDisney kids races on Saturday. A health and fitness expo featured the latest running merchandise, products and apparel tailored for women, as well as a speaker series involving official runDisney training consultant Jeff Galloway and nutritionist Tara Gidus.

Tinker Bell Half Marathon Weekend is the second women-focused event weekend in the runDisney series. Disney's Princess Half Marathon Weekend takes place at Walt Disney World Resort Feb. 22-24. Both event weekends are among the largest women-specific events in the country and designed to celebrate and promote women's empowerment, women's health and an active lifestyle.

January 30, 2012

Kellie Nickerson Wins Inaugural Tinker Bell Half Marathon at Disneyland Resort

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Photo ©Disneyland

More than 17,000 runners take part in women-focused weekend
of events centered on health, fitness and active lifestyles

ANAHEIM, Calif. (Jan. 29, 2012) - Kellie Nickerson - looking apropos in her fairy wings and green tutu - flew away from the field to capture the inaugural Tinker Bell Half Marathon at Disneyland Resort in Anaheim, Calif.

Nickerson, who hails from Albuquerque, N.M., captured her first win at Disney in 1:27:52, finishing ahead of Southern Californians Sharon Wilkinson of Winnetka (1:28:18) and Stacy Schafer from Carlsbad (1:28:54).

The Tinker Bell Half Marathon, hosted by the city of Anaheim and Disneyland Resort, led runners on a 13.1-mile trek through Disneyland and Disney California Adventure parks, as well as by several city of Anaheim landmarks. The first year event featured music, entertainment, Disney characters and costumed runners donning fairy wings and pixie dust. Finishers received a commemorative Tinker Bell "wings" medal.

TV sitcom star Megyn Price (Rules of Engagement) and "Goonies," "Lord of the Rings" and "Rudy" movie star Sean Astin were among the 12,000-plus registered runners to take part in Sunday morning's race.

The weekend of events, all geared toward health, fitness and active lifestyles for women, featured a variety of races including The Never Land 5K on Friday night, kids' races on Saturday and the Tinker Bell Half Marathon on Sunday. There was also a health and fitness expo featuring the latest running merchandise, products, apparel and guest speakers - all tailored for women - creating a weekend of camaraderie and wellness, plus a pinch of Tinker Bell's trademark sassiness and sense of adventure.

Tinker Bell Half Marathon Weekend is the second women-focused event weekend in the runDisney series. Disney's Princess Half Marathon Weekend takes place at Walt Disney World Resort Feb. 24 - 26. Both event weekends are among the largest women-specific events in the country.

January 3, 2012

Celebrities and Wounded Veterans Join Record Disney Marathon Weekend

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19th annual runDisney event to include new marathon relay option and commemorative 15th anniversary half marathon medal; weekend field to top 56,000

Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (Jan. 3, 2012) - Reality TV stars and wounded military soldiers are expected to be part of the more than 56,000 runners participating in the Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend presented by Cigna this weekend.

Ethan Zohn (Survivor / Amazing Race), Jenna Morasca (Survivor / Amazing Race) and Trista and Ryan Sutter (The Bachelor) are among the celebrities entered in the weekend of events at Walt Disney World Resort. All are running in the half marathon on Saturday along with four wounded veterans who are part of the Achilles Freedom Team, which supports disabled runners. Workout guru Tony Horton, founder of the P90X workout, will be on hand to prepare runners for their race.

The marathon weekend also features a new relay option that gives runners the opportunity to pair up and split the 26.2 mile journey through all four Disney theme parks - Epcot, Magic Kingdom, Animal Kingdom and Hollywood Studios - and receive a special Chip and Dale medal. And to commemorate the 15th anniversary of the half marathon, all finishers will be awarded a one-of-a-kind Donald Duck half marathon medal.

The 56,000 total runners - a new Disney marathon record - includes more than 26,500 registered runners for the half marathon, 16,500 for the marathon and 8,000 for the Family Fiesta 5K featuring the Three Caballeros - 3,000 more runners than last year. Approximately 6,500 runners will compete in Goofy's Race and a Half Challenge which involves running the half marathon on Saturday and the full marathon on Sunday - 39.3 miles. And about 3,000 young runners will join in the fun and participate in the Mickey Mile and Marathon Kids Fest events on Friday and Saturday.

There's also a Health and Fitness Expo at ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex Thursday - Saturday. Vendors will showcase the latest running merchandise and equipment, plus there will be seminars by leading health and fitness authorities, including marathon training expert Jeff Galloway, the official training consultant for runDisney.

For more information on the 2012 Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend or future runDisney events, visit www.rundisney.com. For coverage throughout the event follow us on Twitter (@disneysports), on runDisney Facebook and at www.disneysportsnews.com.

About runDIsney

runDisney is a series of events providing runners unique opportunities to run various distances through Disney theme parks. Race participants earn Disney-themed medals, experience legendary Disney entertainment and guest service and ultimately celebrate their accomplishments with a Disney vacation. The original event in the series, the Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend presented by CIGNA, takes place in January followed by the Disney Princess Half Marathon Weekend in February, The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror 10-Miler in September and the Disney Wine & Dine Half Marathon Weekend in November. Disneyland hosts the Tinker Bell Half Marathon Weekend in January and the Disneyland Half Marathon in September during Labor Day Weekend. More than 100,000 running enthusiasts participate in runDisney events each year. For more information, visit runDisney.com and follow us on Facebook (runDisney) and Twitter @DisneySports.

August 24, 2011

Celebrities Drew Carey and Megyn Price Headline Soldout Disneyland Half Marathon Weekend

More than 20,500 Runners Taking Part in Labor Day Weekend Races as Part of RunDisney Series; Half Marathon Finishers to Receive New Medal; Kids Race Participants Receive Los Angeles Angels Game Tickets

ANAHEIM, Calif. (Aug. 24, 2011) - Hollywood actors Drew Carey and Megyn Price are expected to be among the throng of runners and fans at the Disneyland Half Marathon Weekend at Disneyland Resort, September 2-4. For the sixth straight year a record field of more than 20,500 runners will compete in the three-day event that's part of the runDisney series.

Carey, host of the popular game show "The Price is Right,' is one of the more than record 15,000 runners signed up to run the 13.1-mile half marathon. Price, star of the hit TV sitcom "Rules of Engagement,' will be part of the starting line festivities for the half marathon.

The Disneyland Half Marathon field, which encompasses runners from 49 states and 23 countries, will have the unique opportunity to run through two Disneyland Resort theme parks - Disneyland and Disney California Adventure. Runners will pass by the Matterhorn, through Sleeping Beauty Castle and alongside California Screamin Roller Coaster before hitting the streets of Anaheim and running through Angel Stadium of Anaheim amid hundreds of spectators.

And awaiting them at the finish line this year will be a newly-created medal designed around Disneyland Resort's iconic Sleeping Beauty Castle. Also, more than 2,750 runners, who ran a runDisney race at Walt Disney World Resort earlier this year, will qualify to receive Disney's Coast to Coast Race Challenge medal when they cross the finish line. All along the route runners will be greeted by cheering fans, Disney characters, music and live entertainers.

In addition to the half marathon, other weekend events include the "Star Tours' Family Fun Run 5K, Kids' Races and a Health and Fitness Expo where visitors can check out the latest in fitness apparel, running gear and high tech gadgets as well as purchase runDisney merchandise and receive training information from former Olympian and runDisney training consultant Jeff Galloway.

New this year is a special offer for participants in the kids' races Saturday who will receive a voucher for a ticket to the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim's 12:35 pm game Sunday against the Minnesota Twins (half marathon runners, friends and families can purchase a $10 voucher for the game at the Health and Fitness Expo). A special pre-game recognition ceremony will take place on the field to salute winners of the Disneyland Half Marathon.

August 9, 2011

2012 Disney World Half Marathon

2012 is the 15th anniversary of the Walt Disney World Half Marathon event. To celebrate, a special medal has been designed.

"In honor of the race ConDUCKtor himself, Mr. Donald Duck, we proudly introduce the 2012 Walt Disney World Half Marathon 15th anniversary finisher medal!"


2012 Half Marathon Medal


Here are a couple previous images of WDW Half Marathon Medals:

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February 27, 2011

Disney's Princess Half-Marathon Caps Weekend of events that draws event-record 22,000 participants to Walt Disney World Resort

Jacksonville runner wins annual runDisney event

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. - (Feb. 27, 2011) - Holding off challengers virtually the entire race Sunday, Jennifer Hanley-Pinto of Jacksonville, Fla. survived long enough to cross the finish line first to win Disney's 2011 Princess Half Marathon at Walt Disney World Resort.

Caitlin Latimer of Lexington, Ky. came in second with a time of 1:23:14, which was just 24 seconds behind Hanley-Pinto, whose winning time was 1:22:50. Heather Schulz of Orlando was third (1:25:01) despite running a faster time than last year when she finished second.

Yet as fast as the field was, no one could quite outrun Hanley-Pinto, 33. Latimer and Schulz stayed on her heels down the stretch but couldn't overtake her as she finished ahead of a field of more than 17,000 runners. In all, more than 22,000 runners participated in endurance events throughout the weekend at Disney, including a health and fitness expo, a 5K and several kid races.

The weekend of events were all designed to celebrate and promote women's empowerment, health and an active lifestyle. It's widely regarded as one of the nation's largest endurance race weekends geared towards women.

Disney's Princess Half Marathon Weekend was the second of runDisney's four signature events. The remaining two are the Disneyland Half Marathon Weekend (September 2-4, 2011) and the Disney Wine & Dine Half Marathon Weekend (September 30-October 1, 2011) events. For more information or to registration for any runDisney events, go to www.rundisney.com.

January 11, 2011

Brazil's Fredison Costa Establishes New Era With Surprising Victory in 2011 Walt Disney World Marathon

Costa Establishes New Era With Surprising
Walt Disney World Marathon Victory

* Brazilian snaps fellow countryman's six-race win streak for his first Disney Marathon win;
* Perennial champion Bastos finishes 15th;
* Clad as Tinker Bell, Thorvilson captures women's title on her birthday;
* Field of more than 17,000 competes in the annual 26.2-mile event through Walt Disney World theme parks

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. - (Jan. 9, 2011) - In perhaps the biggest upset in Walt Disney World Marathon history, Fredison Costa of Brazil upstaged fellow countryman Adriano Bastos to win the Disney Marathon on Sunday and abruptly end Bastos' six-year dominance at Disney.

After finishing second to Bastos at last year's Disney Marathon, Costa, 33, crossed the finish line first this time, posting a time of 2:21:15 to lead the field of more than 17,000 runners who ran through all four Disney World theme parks along the 26.2-mile course. Bastos, who had won the past six Disney Marathons and seven of the last eight, finished 15th (2:45:09). Michael Wardian from Arlington, Va., (2:27:37) was second followed by Paul Nielsen from Orlando, Fla. (2:31:45).

Leah Thorvilson from Little Rock, Ark., was the top women's finisher (2:42:11), celebrating her 32nd birthday by pulling a mild upset of her own in halting Lisa Mizutani's streak of back-to-back Disney Marathon women's victories. Karen Simmonds-Brady from Auburn. NY, was second (2:51:14) and Jessica Crate from Melbourne, Fla., was third (2:51:53). Mizutani from Japan was 12th (3:02:34).

Costa, who now lives in El Paso, Tex., ran near the front of the lead pack early in the race, but then quickly charged into the lead well before the 10-mile mark and then steadily pulled away, winning by more than six minutes.

"I felt very strong the entire race, probably could have pushed the pace if I had to," said Costa, who aspires to compete in the 2012 Olympic Games. "The weather was great and I knew the course very well after running here last year."

Pat Bragassa of Rigby, Idaho., was the top men's Masters Division finisher (runners age 40 and over) with a time of 2:38:41 and Myriam Grenon from Canada won the women's Masters Division with 2:58:30. In the wheelchair division, Krige Schabort of Cedartown, Ga. (1:47:13) won for the third straight year, while Shannon Schaffer of Kissimmee, Fla. (2:47:39), was the first wheelchair woman to cross the finish line.

On Saturday, Tim Young of Rochester Hills, Mich., won the 13.1-mile Disney Half Marathon with a time of 1:05.35. Jenny Scherer, Delavan, Wisc., was the top woman finisher, posting a time of 1:17.35.

In all, runners from all 50 states and 60 other countries took part in a variety of Disney Marathon Weekend events, such as the Disney Family Fun Run 5K, Mickey Mile and Mickey Marathon Kids Fest and the Disney Half Marathon in addition to the Disney Marathon. And, once again more than 5,000 runners put themselves to the ultimate test -- Goofy's Race and a Half Challenge which involved running the half-marathon on Saturday and the marathon on Sunday.

Many runners are celebrating their accomplishments by participating in "Marathon Monday" -- all runners who participated in the marathon receive complimentary entry into Walt Disney World the day after the race.

Registration for the 2012 Disney Marathon Weekend opens March 2011. To register or for more information on all runDisney events, visit www.rundisney.com. Also follow us on Twitter (@disneysports) and Facebook (Disney Sports).

October 5, 2010

Florida Runners Toast Dominance at Inaugural Disney Wine & Dine Half Marathon

Washington, D.C., Competitor is Top Woman Finisher Among Sold-Out Field of More Than 11,000 Runners

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. (Oct. 2, 2010) - Anton Van Zyl from Ft. Lauderdale, Fla., and Matthew Dobson from Jay, Fla., were the first two finishers Saturday night in the inaugural Disney Wine & Dine Half Marathon at Walt Disney World Resort near Orlando, Fla. In the women's division Melissa Wisner from Washington, D.C., crossed the finish line first, with a 1:32:22 time.

Van Zyl and Dobson provided plenty of drama before Van Zyl pulled away. Van Zyl ran a 1:14:51, while Dobson finished close behind with a 1:15:04. Adam Siepiola from Garden City, N.Y., came in third (1:15:12).

"It was real close down the stretch," Van Zyl said. "We were neck and neck. I put on a hard charge about a half mile out. The crowd was fantastic and it was a great finish."

Wisner won easily. She crossed the line nearly three minutes ahead of Sheila Sullivan of Daytona Beach, Fla., who posted a time of 1:35:16. Caterina Lancia of Miami, Fla., was third (1:36:58).

"I've never actually run a night race before, it's very much a different experience," said Wisner. "All the lights made it very exciting."

The half marathon, the last of four runDisney events this year, capped a sold-out weekend full of events that featured more than 14,000 runners, including more than 11,000 that ran the 13.1-mile race through multiple Disney theme parks. The half marathon was the first runDisney half marathon held at night and the first to involve a relay option. The runners celebrated their accomplishment with an exclusive after-hours party at the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival.

"I always like coming to Disney," Van Zyl said. "I love food, I love wine. That's why I'm here." The race began at ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex and weaved through Disney's Animal Kingdom and Disney's Hollywood Studios before finishing at the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival.

All finishers received an inaugural Disney Wine & Dine Half Marathon medal and had the opportunity to experience the Health and Fitness expo at ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex. The expo included seminars on training techniques from Jeff Galloway and the latest running equipment.

Registration for the 2011 Disney Wine & Dine Half Marathon starts in February. The half marathon weekend will take place Sept. 30-Oct. 2.

About runDisney
The runDisney series is a collection of marathon and half marathon event weekends that provide runners unique opportunities to run through Disney theme parks. Race participants also get to earn Disney-themed medals, experience legendary Disney entertainment and guest service, and ultimately celebrate their accomplishments with a Disney vacation. The original event in the series, the Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend presented by CIGNA, takes place each January and features both marathon and half marathon distances. Other races at Walt Disney World Resort in Florida include Disney's Princess Half Marathon presented by Lady Foot Locker in February and the Disney Wine & Dine Half Marathon. The Disneyland Half Marathon takes place each September in California. More than 75,000 people participate in runDisney events each year. For more information visit rundisney.com, facebook.com/rundisney or follow us on Twitter @DisneySports.

June 5, 2010

Disney Marathon Finishers Get New Medal and Complimentary Day at Disney on ‘Marathon Monday’

New 2011 race enhancements include reward of complimentary admission to a Walt Disney World theme park for marathon finishers, plus first-ever online voting to select new race medal; race registration well underway after record marathon weekend exceeded 55,500 in 2010
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LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. (June 1, 2010) - In addition to a tremendous sense of accomplishment, a magical reward will await everyone who completes the Walt Disney World Marathon presented by Cigna in 2011: a new Mickey Mouse race medal and a free day at Disney.

As part of Disney's ongoing efforts to encourage guests to celebrate the milestones in their lives at a Disney park, finishers at the Disney Marathon on Sunday, Jan. 9, 2011, will receive complimentary admission to a Walt Disney World theme park the Monday after the race.

And for the first time ever, runners and fans can choose the official 2011 Disney Marathon medal, which will be their unofficial "ticket' to Disney on "Marathon Monday.' Through online voting this summer, fans can vote for their favorite from three medal designs, all created by Jostens Inc., which has designed Super Bowl rings and college football's prestigious Heisman Trophy. The medal with the most votes will become the official medal of the 2011 Walt Disney World Marathon.

Voting is underway now and runs through July 28 at disneyworldmarathon.com. The winning medal will be announced in early August.

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"Running 26.2 miles is quite an accomplishment even if you're energized by Disney entertainment along the way, so what better way to celebrate such an achievement than a complimentary fun-filled day at Disney where you can show off your new medal,' said Faron Kelley, director of marketing for Disney Sports. "These new features are just more ways runners and their families can combine their passion for running with a memorable trip to their favorite vacation destination.'

Registration remains open for the 2011 Walt Disney Marathon Weekend (Jan. 6-9), which is approaching 50 percent of capacity. The Disney Marathon Weekend (typical race start temperature 48.6 degrees) will once again include a variety of events for all ages and running abilities - kids races, a Family Fun Run 5K, the Goofy Race & a Half Challenge, the Disney Half Marathon and the Disney Marathon, plus the Health & Fitness Expo. To sign up for any of the weekend events, go to disneyworldmarathon.com.

Last year's Disney Marathon Weekend, which drew a record 55,500 registered runners from all 50 states and 50 countries, was highlighted by Adriano Bastos' sixth consecutive Disney Marathon victory and Lisa Mizutani's second straight women's title.


About Disney's Endurance Series

The Endurance Series at Walt Disney World Resort gives recreational athletes of all ages and abilities the chance to walk, jog, run, bike and swim their way "around the world." From marathons to road races to triathlons, athletes from across the country and around the world compete to stay in shape, achieve personal best times and raise donations for charitable causes. Popular Endurance Series events are the Walt Disney World Marathon and Half Marathon presented by Cigna, Champion 5K at ESPN the Weekend, Disney's Princess Half Marathon Weekend presented by Lady Foot Locker, Expedition Everest Challenge presented by Champion and the inaugural Disney Wine & Dine Half Marathon Weekend.

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About Disney Endurance Series

This page contains an archive of all entries posted to Disney and Florida Attractions News Blog in the Disney Endurance Series category. They are listed from oldest to newest.

Disney Dreamers Academy is the previous category.

Disney Parks Moms Panel is the next category.

Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.