2016 Rock ‘n’ Roll San Francisco: Race Highlights

An ideal day for running with fog-shrouded skies and temperatures in the low-50s greeted more than 9,000 participants at the 2016 Transamerica Rock ’n’ Roll Half Marathon San Francisco. Jonathan Varela Obando of Costa Rica and Alisa MacDonald of Canada were the top finishers, breaking the tape in 1 hour, 14 minutes and 14 seconds, and 1:22:14, respectively.

The 36-year-old Obando took control from the start, hitting the 1-mile marker in 5:44 to open up a lead that he never relinquished. Obando, who ran 2:23:17 to finish 16th at the 2015 L.A. Marathon, passed the 10-mile marker along Marina Green in 57:15 before covering the final 5K to the finish line at Civic Center Plaza in a quick 16:59.

In the women’s race, 35-year-old Alisa MacDonald of Canada, who was training for the Boston Marathon, dominated from start to finish. She covered the first 5K in 18:44 and passed 10 miles in 1:02:21 en route to victory.

“This is a much harder course than what I’m used to,” said MacDonald, who was hoping to run between 2:42 and 2:44 at Boston. “It was tough but it was beautiful. The conditions were absolutely perfect.”

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The hilly course starts along the Great Highway before making its way inland down Balboa Street. It weaves through the beautiful Sea Cliff district along Camino Del Mar before heading up Lincoln Blvd., toward the Golden Gate Bridge. Runners cross “the gateway to the west” just after Mile 4 and return at Mile 8 before heading toward Crissy Field and running along the Marina Green. Just after Mile 11 runners make their final climb up Polk Street before enjoying a downhill finish to Civic Center Plaza.

Runners from 47 states and 32 countries took part in the 2016 half marathon. In true Rock ‘n’ Roll fashion, indie pop duo, MS MR, rocked the finish line concert under the sun in Civic Center Plaza in a picture perfect post-race celebration.

2016 Transamerica Rock ’n’ Roll Half Marathon San Francisco Results

Top-5 Men

  1. Jonathan Varela Obando, 36, Costa Rica, 1:14:14
  2. Tyler Wasieleski, Union City, Calif., 30, 1:16:32
  3. Ben Goldman, Monte Sereno, Calif., 37, 1:20:09
  4. Derek Lactaoen, Seattle, Wash., 26, 1:20:26
  5. Kevin Schneider, San Francisco, 26, 1:20:20

Top-5 Women

  1. Alisa MacDonald, Canada, 35, 1:22:14
  2. Morgan Larson, Waseca, Minn., 21, 1:27:12
  3. Janet Mulvey, Sunnyvale, Calif., 32, 1:27:45
  4. Courtney Kostrikin, San Luis Obispo, Calif., 26, 1:30:54
  5. Elva Guttormsen, Petaluma, Calif., 42, 1:31:38