A Race Recap of the 45th Running of the Horsetooth Half Marathon

It was another record year for the 45th running of the Horsetooth Half Marathon, with over 1,750 runners from more than 40 different states crossing the finish line. In both the men’s and women’s races it was a close run thing with tight podiums, lead changes and drama all the way to the finish.

In the men’s race, 2017 King of the Hill Tyler McCandless once again took it out hard from the gun, claiming the race premium for first man over the hill in a record 9:55 (5:40 pace). Eventual race winner Brandon Johnson (1:08:15) crossed the hill in sixth some 40 seconds back. Johnson would have to wait until mile 10 to claim the lead from last year’s champion and course record holder, Gebre Abadi (1:09:02), who would hold on for second place. Colorado Springs-based, Tesfaalem Mehari (1:09:37) ran a controlled race to round out the podium in third, with Scott Dahlberg (1:09:51) and Alejandro Garcia (1:10:28) following in fourth and fifth for the final money spots.

As in the men’s race, a new record was set for the Queen of the Hill with Boulder-based Kyle Blakeslee beating Sam Rivard to the top of Monster Mountain by some 18 seconds (11:49) and besting Brianne Nelson’s record from 2016. By mile 4, a sizable lead pack had formed with former winners Maggie Callahan and Nelson mixing it up with Blakeslee, Rivard, AnnMarie Kirkpatrick and Misiker Demessie. Once off the hills and onto the bike path at mile 9 it was local favorite Kirkpatrick and Ethiopian Demessie racing for the win with Rivard charging hard in third. Coming into the home stretch, Kirkpatrick was able to find the extra gear for the win in a time of 1:20:20 (second fastest ever), just 14 seconds ahead of Demessie in second and 30 seconds ahead of Rivard in third. Last year’s champ, Callahan would hold on for fourth (1:22:05) ahead of training partner Blakeslee in fifth (1:23:12).

Taking home the prize money in the men’s master’s division was local favorite and previous winner Steve Folkerts (1:22:58), who beat last year’s masters champ Dan Clark by less than a minute. In the women’s division, Fort Collins’ Jenny Powelka (1:35:55) finished just over two minutes ahead of Vail’s Katie Crofton. 

Overall and age group award winners took home beautiful pottery awards from famed local potter Amy Hayman. For those that weren’t able to collect their awards at the post-race prize giving, they are available for pickup for the next few weeks from Altitude Running, Fort Collins. And for those that did not get a commemorative pint glass at the finish, they are available for pickup at the New Belgium Brewing Tasting Room.

The deep field and fast times were aided by the perfect running conditions we were blessed with this year. Race morning temperatures ranged from the low 40s into the mid 50s and gave way to beautiful post-race conditions which were perfect for hanging out and enjoying music from The Patti Fiasco at the New Belgium Finish Line Party. Some years you get lucky!

  • Full results are available from the results page of the race website
  • Official race photos from our 5 race photographers are available here.

In closing, we’d like to thank all of our wonderful volunteers that helped out in many different capacities to help make the 2018 running of the race a success. Thank You! We’d also like to thank our seven wonderful top-tier sponsors who have supported this year’s event with total enthusiasm.

Please visit our sponsor page to see the full list of business sponsors and non-profit volunteer organizations who helped make this year’s race a success.

 

Pre-race details for the 2018 Horsetooth Half Marathon

Thank you for choosing to participate in the 45th running of the Horsetooth Half Marathon. This year we’ll be welcoming record numbers of runners to undertake the journey from Hughes Stadium to New Belgium Brewing, and we’re excited that you’ll be a part of that journey. 

While all relevant race information is available on the race website, we’d like to draw your attention to a few important race details and to also highlight a few of our partners who are helping to make this year’s event the best yet. We’re especially thankful to our top-tier sponsors who have all become integral parts of the race planning and execution process.

DaVinci Sign SystemsRaintree Athletic ClubNew Belgium BrewingColorado In Motion Physical Therapy 


Packet Pickup

Pre-race packet pickup will be at Raintree Athletic Club on Saturday April 14 from noon until 6:00pm. Raintree is located on the NW corner of Drake and Shields at 2555 S. Shields St.

In order to avoid lines on race morning, we encourage you to pick up your packets on Saturday. If you are not able to make it to Saturday’s packet pickup, then we will also be offering race morning packet pickup from 7:00am – 8:15am at our new staging location on the private lot directly to the south of the race start.  

* Please look up your bib number HERE*

** We have a very limited number of entries left. If you have friends of family interested in running, we suggest they register by Friday.

*** Per our race registration policy, we cannot offer transfers, refunds or deferrals to 2019. 

Race Start, Parking and Busing

The race will begin at 8:30am on County Road 42C (Dixon Canyon Rd) adjacent to the southwest gate of Hughes Stadium, directly under Dixon Canyon Dam. Parking will be at the Holiday Twin Drive In. All Drive-In parking wll be from the south, off Overland Trail Rd (right turn only). We expect parking to be tight, so please carpool with friends or get dropped off if you can. Additional parking is avaiable on city streets directly to the north of the Drive-In.  

Runner drop-off will be on the hard shoulder of the westboud lane of CR 42C. Drop-off will be ‘airport style’ so please be ready to ‘de-car’ once you arrive. All drop-off access onto CR 42C will be from the north off Overland Trail (right turn only). There will be no U-turns on CR 42C once runners are dropped off. Drop off vehicles will exit to the west and can circle back into town south on 38e or north on Centennial. 

The Drive-In is located 3/4 of a mile east of the race start. Race morning registration, port-a-johns and packet pickup will all be on the private lot directly to the south of the race start. Please plan accordingly in terms of the time you’ll need to get from your car to the start. We advise getting to the Drive-In no later than 7:30.

If you need clothing or other gear transported to the finish, a bag drop will be available on race morning at the packet pickup and registration location. A tag from your race bib must be pinned to your bag prior to dropping off (we will not be providing bags). You will need to show your race bib to collect your bag at the finish. While we will make every effort possible to ensure all bags are reunited with their owners, we strongly recommend that you not pack valuables in your gear bag.

Free busing will be available from the finish at New Belgium back to the Drive-In parking. Buses will be running from 10:00am to 2:00pm.

New Belgium Post Race Party

 

The famed Horsetooth Half Marathon post race party will take place on the grounds immediately to the south of New Belgium Brewing. All race participants are welcome to enjoy free beer from New Belgium, in addition to post-race burritos from The Rio Grande Mexican Restaurant with cinnamon rolls from the Great Harvest Bread Company and cookies from Mary’s Mountain Cookies (Old Town). Non-alcoholic beverages will be available from Eldorado Spring Water.

Beers will be served only to those runners who have shown proof of age and are wearing an over-21 wristband. This can be taken care of at packet pickup on Saturday (wristband must be attached then) or at the entrance to the beer garden after the race.

Wristbands will also be available to friends and family for a suggested donation of $10. All proceeds will be donated to the Teaching Tree Early Childhood Learning Center

With your race run, and food and beverages in hand, please sit back in the beer garden or picnic area and enjoy live music from The Patti Fiasco. Or peruse the post-race expo booths and enjoy samples from vendors or a complimentary massage from our volunteer masseuses.

Food for family and friends will be avilable from food trucks at New Belgium. Everyone is welcome to enjoy the live music and vendor expo.  

On-Course Entertainment

Weather permitting, we will have on course music at three separate locations courtesy of the Blevins Middle School Jazz Ensemble, the African Drum Collective of Fort Collins, and the Poudre High School Drum Line.

Pace Groups

If you’re looking to hit a specific finish time, we have a team of pacers lined up to help you get there. If you have questions related to pacing, then be sure to stop by the pace group table at packet pickup on Saturday. We’ll have pace leaders for the following goal times: 1:30, 1:45, 2:00, 2:15, 2:30.

Given the hilly nature of the course, mile splits will not be even. We will have suggested mile-for-mile pacing charts available at packet pickup.

Or, check out sample pacing splits here

Aid Stations

Vfuel sports drink and water will be available at all five aid stations. There will also be a port-a-john at each aid station, in addition to a first aid kit. Additional medical coverage will be provided by Poudre Valley Hospital EMS. Aid stations will be spaced out and staffed as follows:

Additional Information

Be sure to read through the race website for additional race details, instructions, rules, and directions.

Thank you and have a great race! 

Fort Collins Running Club

   

 

   

 

Fort Collins Running Club Announces 2018 Horsetooth Half Elite Field

The Horetooth Half Marathon will be awarding a record $8,000 in prize money this year, with generous support from the Fort Collins Running Club.

Overall awards for the 45th running of the event will go five deep. In the master’s division, payouts will go three deep, and – new this year – there will be a separate Fort Collins Running Club-only pool. In addition, the race will be awarding a $200 premium to the first man and first woman to the top of Monster Mountain at mile 1.8, some 500 feet above the race start on Dixon Canyon Drive. 

“The Fort Collins Running Club is committed to supporting runners of all ages, talent, and experience.  As part of our mission to support the elite side of the sport in Colorado, the Club has added an additional $4,000 to the 2018 Horsetooth Half prize purse, as well as increasing our support of local runners by offering cash awards for our top club members,” said Fort Collins Running Club Co-President, Kate Schulte.

“We love the Horsetooth Half course and  its vibe, and want to make it THE race for all Coloradoans, and even all U.S. runners, to add to their bucket list of races.  With a challenging and beautiful course,  the best post-race party in the state, and now with even more of the best talent in the area, the 45th running of the race is sure to be exciting!”

For full award details, including age group awards, please visit the awards section of the race website

Tyler McCandless (right) beats Gebre Abadi and Scott Dahlberg over the hill to win the 2017 King of the Hill prem.

Mens’s Field Summary

In 2017, we saw the top three men all go under the existing course record, with Gebre Abadi setting the new standard at 1:07:27. For the 45th running of the Horsetooth Half on April 15, 2018, we’re excited to be welcoming back the full 2017 podium. 

As the defending champion and course record holder, Gebre Abadi will be wearing the number one bib and he will be the man to beat. Denver-based Abadi looks to be in good form, with a 1:05 win at the January Carlsbad Half Marathon and a quick 14:20 at the Carlsbad 5,000 last month. 

Perhaps in even better recent form is Tyler McCandless. Second last year in 1:09:16, McCandless has since set a massive marathon PR while finishing second in the USATF Marathon Championships at the California International Marathon in December. His time of 2:12:28 is a true breakthrough performance and puts him among the best U.S. marathoners in the country, and surely suggests he will be in contention at the 2020 Olympic Trials qualifying race (location TBD).

University of Wyoming Assistant Track Coach, Scott Dahlberg, was just 8 seconds back of McCandless while finishing third last year. He too will be back to toe the line for the 45th running of the event after winning the Seattle Half Marathon in November. 

Other elite entrants that will be in the hunt for a podium finish include Brandon Johnson who, like McCandless, had a breakout run at the Cal International Marathon, debuting at the distance with an Olympic Trials qualifying time of 2:18:13. With a 1:05:11 half PR, we expect Brandon to be firmly in the mix. 

Previous course record holder, Paul Petersen, collects his 2017 age group award.

Others showing recent form include Bashash Walio, winner of the 2017 Fall Equinox Half Marathon (1:10:23) here in Fort Collins; Germay Tesfai, winner of the Two Cities Half Marathon in November with recent college (Chico State) PRs of 30:33 (10k) and 14:30 (5k); and Eddie Perez, who ran a 1:09:54 at the USA Half Marathon Invitational in San Diego. Alejandro Garcia was a 2017 DII All American and recently won the Spring Equinox Half Marathon (1:12:01) here in Fort Collins. Known more as a trail and mountain runner, former Pikes Peak Ascent winner (2:12, 2010) Timmy Parr is likely be looking to push the pace for the Monster Mountain premium. 

Others in the field with Horsetooth Half form include former course record holder (1:10:32) and multi-time winner (2013 & 2015), Paul Petersen; 2010 winner Steve Folkerts; 8th place finisher in 2017 Chris Copenhaver; and defending Master’s Champ Dan Clark

Women’s Field Summary

Maggie Callahan wins the women’s 2017 race.

Brianne Nelson reset the record books in 2016 with her amazing 1:16:44 run, which was not only good enough for the women’s win but indeed the overall race win. While we don’t think that Brianne will be taking home overall honors this year, we can’t help but think she’ll be the runner to beat in the women’s race.

Brianne Nelson on her way to an overall win in 2016, followed closely by Stephen Pretak in second.

However, last year’s winner Maggie Callahan may have a few things to say about that. And Fort Collins was a great venue for Maggie last year. Not only did she win the Horsetooth Half, but she also took home top honors in the inaugural Fortitude 10k Pro Chase and the Fort Collins Running Club’s July 4th FireKracker 5k Elite race.  

AnnMarie Kirkpatrick has been in great form since here 4th place finish at the Horsetooth Half last year. The highlight of AnneMarie’s 2017 running year was an Olympic Trials Qualifying run at the Cal International Marathon in December (2:44:51). And, with a 1:14:30 finish at the 2018 Houston Half Marathon in January, AnnMarie looks to be ready to go at least one better than her string of two consecutive fourth-place finishes at the Horsetooth Half in 2017 and 2016. 

Besting AnnMarie for third in 2016 was Ruth Waller-Liddle. A 800 meter standout at Baylor University, Ruth has been stepping up in distance in recent years and looks ready for another strong run at the Horsetooth Half this year. 

Adriana Nelson (nee Pirtea) has a marathon PR of 2:28 (London, 2008), a half marathon PR of 1:11 (New York, 2013), and finished second at the 2007 Chicago Marathon. In 2013, she won the USATF Half Marathon Championship (1:11) in Duluth. Adriana will be using the Horsetooth Half as her first race back from giving birth to her first child, AJ. She claims a lack of fitness, but all things are relative and we’re just excited to have such a world-class talent in the field.

Among those that are newcomers to the Horsetooth Half course are pro triathlete Uli Bromme, who has a marathon PR of 2:47 and a 2017 altitude half marathon win (1:24) at the Three Creeks Half Marathon. Kyle Blakeslee is a 7-Time DII All American and ran a 1:16:24 half marathon PR at the Houston Half Marathon in January. Caroline Veltri is also coming into the race with great recent form, winning the San Antonio Marathon (2:56) in December and running a 1:22 half marathon in Las Vegas in November. 

Strongest and Deepest Field Ever

Race Director, Nick Clark, believes that this will be the strongest and deepest Horsetooth Half field in the 45-year history of the race, noting, “with the generous support of the Fort Collins Running Club, we have been able to double the prize purse this year, which has enabled us to attract what we believe to be the deepest and strongest Horsetooth Half field ever, and among the strongest half marathon fields in the state this year.”

“While our focus for the race is primarily on providing a unique, fun and community-focused experience for all of our runners, we also have an opportunity to support the sport of running through the Running Club’s sponsorship of the prize purse and we hope to be able to continue to focus on developing the race as one of Colorado’s most competitive half marathons.”

“We think the race is going to be fiercely fought this year and we encourage running fans to come on out to spectate the race and see some of the fastest runners in the state compete.”  

LuLuLemon Pace Team

Once again, we will be offering pacers for the following goal times:

  • 1:30 (6:52 per mile pace) – Ryan Perrich; Fort Collins, CO
  • 1:45 (8:01 per mile pace) – Chris Aronson; Fort Collins, CO
  • 2:00 (9:10 per mile pace) – Will Greenwood; Fort Collins, CO
  • 2:15 (10:20 per mile pace) – Joel White; Fort Collins, CO
  • 2:30 (11:30 per mile pace) – Melody White & Dan Yap; Fort Collins, CO

Thank you to LuLuLemon for outfitting our pace team this year. If you want to learn a little more about the runners pacing the different groups, please see the recent profiles on the race facebook page.

We will also have a pacer table at Saturday’s packet pickup at Raintree Athletic Club where you can chat with our pacers and pick up a custom-made Horsetooth Half split guide for the 5 different goal finish times. You can also check out the split guide at the link below.

Check out our Horsetooth Half Pacing Chart.

Patti Fiasco to Headline Post-Race Party

Hey music (and running) fans, we’re excited to announce that the post-race celebrations for the 45th running of Colorado’s oldest half marathon will be jet fueled by local rock n’ roll legends, The Patti Fiasco. Add in beer from New Belgium Brewing and burritos from Rio Grande Mexican Restaurant, and we’ve got ourselves a party. Music will run from 10:00am until the awards with a short set after the awards.

We’ll also have music out on course in strategic locations to keep you motivated all the way to the finish line where you’ll be able to relax and enjoy the music, food and post-race expo. Be sure to bring your friends and family!

Horsetooth Half Training Season Underway

Horsetooth Half Marathon Training Group 2018

We kicked off the Horsetooth Half Training Season in grand style on Sunday, January 7 with a mega-group run from New Belgium Brewing. We want to extend a few words of thanks to our hosts New Belgium for their continued support of the race as we enter our 45th year, and also to the Fort Collins Running Club for coming through with post-race snacks and also for their help in organizing the RunningU training program. 

The run was followed by a great presentation from Terry Gebhardt at Colorado in Motion. Terry demonstrated some key strengthening exercises that endurance athletes can use to keep themselves healthy and on track as they increase their mileage in preparation for race day. Contact Colorado in Motion if you’d like to learn more about their ‘Run Stronger’ program designed specifically for runners.

We were also excited to have Hoka One One on hand with demo shoes, and welcome them as our newest race partner. Both Hoka and Colorado in Motion will be on hand at future training runs to offer advice on training and shoe choice as you get ready for race day on April 15.

We will be offering group runs and activities every Sunday leading up to the race. Please check out the Training Page for more information.  

Train for the Horsetoooth Half with the Fort Collins Running Club


The 2018 Horsetooth Half Training Program will officially kick off January 7 with a 10:00am group run from New Belgium Brewing. The run will be followed by drink specials, snacks from the Fort Collins Running Club, and a training presentation from Colorado In Motion

REGISTER HERE

The popular RunningU training group is offered free to Running Club members and includes:

  • A 14-week training schedule
  • Group long runs every Sunday, alternating between New Belgium (flat), the race start (hills), and Tortoise & Hare races (speed)
  • Pace leaders for group runs
  • Pre and post-run informational and training sessions at New Belgium Brewery and the Rio Grande Mexican Restaurant
  • Sponsor giveaways
  • Peer/mentor support and motivation through a closed Facebook group and email list

Like previous years there are two programs to choose from. The Beginner Program is designed for participants new to running or new to the half marathon distance. The Intermediate Program is designed for runners with a couple of half marathon finishes under their belts and who are looking to improve their times. 

The two training schedules are available from the race website along with full details for the 2018 RunningU Training Program, including the weekend long run and presentation schedules. 

All weekend runs are free and open to anyone, but we encourage you to register for the program if you’d like to be included in the peer mentoring benefits, midweek group run opportunities or just want to get to know your half marathoners in training better. 

REGISTER HERE

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2018 Registration Opens With Door Buster Pricing

Registration for the 2018 edition of the Horsetooth Half Marathon opens on Labor Day (Monday, September 4 2017) with a one-week door buster pricing deal of just $65. The 45th running of the 13.1 mile race will take place April 15, 2018, starting to the south of Hughes Stadium on Dixon Canyon Road and finishing by New Belgium Brewing on Linden Street in Old Town Fort Collins. Registrations will be capped at 2,500 on a first-come, first-served basis.

The 2017 Race Gets Underway

“It’s our honor to continue the grand tradition of the Horsetooth Half Marathon. Now in its 45th year, the race has a proud history as Colorado’s oldest road half marathon, and has been a longtime staple of the Fort Collins running community,” said race director Nick Clark, co-owner of race management company Gnar Runners which began managing the race on behalf of the Fort Collins Running Club in 2015. “In 2017 we saw record registrations, and for next year’s race we expect to be at capacity.” 

“The Horsetooth Half is a wonderful community event that celebrates many of the things that make Fort Collins such a great town to live in and visit. We’ve got unbelievable scenery on a challenging course, a wonderful in-race atmosphere, and a memorable finish line party at New Belgium Brewing, the epicenter of the Fort Collins craft brewing scene,” Clark said. “We’re also really excited about the great community partnerships that we’ve been building over the last couple of years among our sponsors and non-profit partners. It was fantastic to be able to make financial contributions to almost a dozen non-profit groups and school cross country programs this year through the help of our corporate partners, and we plan to grow both the corporate and non-profit partnerships in 2018.”

The Fort Collins Running Club will support runners training for the race through its Horsetooth Half RunningU program, a free 15-week training program beginning in early January and leading up to the race. The training program includes weekly long runs every Sunday. Six of those runs will start and end at New Belgium, with presentations and drink specials after each one. The group training runs are open to everyone, whether registered for the race or not.

Along with the Horsetooth Half Marathon, the Fort Collins Running Club also puts on the FireKracker 5k and the Tortoise and Hare races, a series of seven handicapped races beginning in October and ending two weeks before the Horsetooth Half. The races range in distance from 4k (2.5 miles) to 12k (7.5 miles).

Maggie Callahan wins the women’s race.

2017 Horsetooth Half Marathon Recap

It was a record year for the 44th running of the Horsetooth Half Marathon, with a total of 1,649 runners from 40 different states crossing the finish line, eclipsing the previous finisher record from 2012. In the men’s race, our top three finishers all dipped under Paul Peterson’s 2013 course record, with Gebre Abadi setting the new bar at an incredibly fast 1:07:27. 

The fast times were aided by the perfect running conditions we were blessed with this year. Race morning temperatures ranged from the low 40s into the mid 50s and gave way to beautiful post-race conditions which ended up being perfect for hanging out and enjoying the New Belgium Finish Line Party. Some years you get lucky!

Colleen Weitzel enjoying a beautiful day midway through the 2017 Horsetooth Half.

Tyler McCandless (right) beats Gabre Abadi and Scott Dahlberg over the hill to win the King of the Hill prem.

In celebration of the hilly nature of the course, we again gave away $100 premiums to the first man and first woman to the top of Monster Mountain, just 1.8 miles into the course. In the exciting race within the race, Tyler McCandless surged ahead of race winner Gebre Abadi and third place finisher Scott Dahlberg near the top of the hill to post a record 9:58 split (5:30 pace), while women’s race winner Maggie Callahan cruised uncontested to claim the Queen of the Mountain crown in 12:18. Full Monster Mountain split times are available here.

From the top of the hill, Maggie Callahan (1:23:25) settled into a rhythm, ultimately growing her 30 second lead into about a minute by the finish over second place finisher Heather Utrata (1:24:13) and 90 seconds over third place finisher and local favorite Dani Cook (1:24:32).  

In the men’s race, Gebre Abadi broke open the lead pack of three coming off North Dam hill at about the five mile mark and managed to put a couple of minutes on Tyler (1:09:16) and Scott (1:09:28) who raced shoulder to shoulder until about a half mile from the finish, where Tyler was able to surge for second.  

Maggie Callahan wins the women’s race.

Taking home the prize money in the master’s division were Sioux Falls’ Yvonne Smith (1:39:06) and local favorite Dan Clark (1:22:43), who out-kicked owner of Mary’s Mountain Cookies Old Town, Mike Neal, by a slim six seconds.

Age group award winners took home beautiful pottery awards from famed local potter Amy Hayman. For those that weren’t able to collect their awards at the post-race prize giving, they will be available for pickup for the next few weeks from Runners Roost Fort Collins. If you are interested in official race apparel, Runners Roost also has a limited run of inventory available for sale at the store. 

Previous course record holder, Paul Petersen, collects his age group award.

In addition to our awards winners, all finishers went home with a beautiful commemorative pint glass from New Belgium Brewing and a unique finisher’s medal.

If you haven’t had a chance to check out official race photos, please find them here:

Teaching Tree Early Childhood Learning Center volunteers work the Taft water station.

Full race results are available from the results page of the race website. 

In closing, we’d like to thank all of our wonderful volunteers who helped out in many different capacities to help make the 2017 running of the race a success. Thank You! We’d also like to thank our five wonderful top-tier sponsors who have supported this year’s event with total enthusiasm.

Please visit our sponsor page to see the full list of business sponsors and non-profit volunteer organizations who helped make this year’s race a success.

New Belgium Brewing

New Belgium Brewing

Salomon Running

Salomon Running

Colorado In Motion Physical Therapy

Colorado in Motion

DaVinci Sign Systems

DaVinci Sign Systems

Raintree Athletic Club

Raintree Athletic Club

Planning has already begun for 2018, and we very much hope to see you back again in just under a year on April 15. Registration will open October 1. Until then, happy running! 

Done did it.

Winners of the ‘stroller division’ Mike and Jamo Hinterberg in 1:29:07. A stroller course record? We think so.

Ron Michaels: DJ by night, pacer by day.

2017 Horsetooth Half Marathon – Pre-race Details

Dear Horsetooth Half Marathon Participant:

Thank you for choosing to participate in the 44th running of the Horsetooth Half Marathon. This year we’ll be welcoming record numbers of runners to undertake the journey from Hughes Stadium to New Belgium Brewing, and we’re excited that you’ll be a part of that journey. 

While all relevant race information is available on the race website, we’d like to draw your attention to a few important race details and to also highlight a few of our partners who are helping to make this year’s event one of the best yet. We’re especially thankful to our top-tier sponsors who have all become integral parts of the race planning and execution process.

New Belgium Brewing

New Belgium Brewing

Salomon Running

Salomon Running

Colorado In Motion Physical Therapy

Colorado in Motion

DaVinci Sign Systems

DaVinci Sign Systems

Raintree Athletic Club

Raintree Athletic Club

Packet Pickup

Pre-race packet pickup will be at Raintree Athletic Club (RAC) on Saturday April 22 from noon until 6:00pm. Please see below for a FREE three-day membership to RAC. Packets will also include a bath bomb for your post-race soak from Salus Bath & Body, and of course your bib and performance race t-shirt. Raintree is located on the NW corner of Drake and Shields at 2555 S. Shields St.

Runners Roost Fort Collins will have official Horsetooth Half branded performance running apparel (Salomon) for sale at packet pickup. Additional runing gear and fuel will be available at packet pickup from both Runners Roost and Altitude Running.

In order to avoid lines on race morning, we encourage you to pick up your packets on Saturday. If you are not able to make it to Saturday’s packet pickup, then we will also be offering race morning packet pickup from 7:00 – 8:15 inside the main south gate of Hughes Stadium off Dixon Canyon Road.

*Please look up your bib number HERE*

** We have a very limited number of entries left. If you have friends of family interested in running, we suggest they register by Friday.

Race Start, Parking and Busing

The race will begin at 8:30am on County Road 42C adjacent to the southwest gate of Hughes Stadium, directly under Dixon Canyon Dam. Parking will be at the Holiday Twin Drive In. All Drive-In parking wll be from the south, off Overland Trail Rd. (right turn only). We expect parking to be tight, so please carpool with friends or get dropped off if you can.

Runner drop-off will be inside the main south gate of Hughes Stadium. Drop-off will be ‘airport style’ so please be ready to ‘de-car’ once you arrive so we can get cars in and out efficiently.

The Drive In is located 3/4 of a mile east of the race start. Race morning registration, port-a-johns and packet pickup will be inside the main south gate of Hughes Stadium off Dixon Canyon Road, a half mile from the Twin Drive-In parking on the way to the race start. Please plan accordingly in terms of the time you’ll need to get from car to packets to start. We advise getting to the Drive-In no later than 7:30 for the 8:30 start.

If you need clothing or other gear transported to the finish, a bag drop will be available on race morning near the packet pickup and registration location. A tag from your race bib must be pinned to your bag prior to dropping off (we will not be providing bags). You will need to show your race bib to collect your bag at the finish. While we will make every effort possible to make sure all bags are reunited with their owners, we strongly recommend that you not pack valuables in your gear bag.

Free busing will be available from the finish at New Belgium back to the start at Hughes Stadium. Buses will be running from 10:00am to 2:00pm.

New Belgium Post Race Party

The famed Horsetooth Half Marathon post race party will take place on the grounds of New Belgium Brewing. All race participants are welcome to enjoy free beer from New Belgium, in addition to a hearty and healthy soup from Boulder Organic with wheat rolls from the Great Harvest Bread Company. We will also have fruit available courtesy of Trader Joe’s. If you’ve got room for more, then try a delicious cookie from Mary’s Mountain Cookies (Old Town). Non-alcoholic beverages will be available from Ripple, Morning Fresh and Eldorado Spring Water.

Beers will be served only to those who have shown proof of age and are wearing an over-21 wristband. This can be taken care of at packet pickup on Saturday (wristband must be attached then) or at the entrance to the beer garden after the race.

Wristbands will also be available to friends and family for a suggested donation of $10. All proceeds will be donated to the Teaching Tree Early Childhood Learning Center

With your race run, and food and beverages in hand, please sit back in the beer garden or picnic area and enjoy live music from local blues fusion band Musketeer Gripweed. Or peruse the post-race expo booths and enjoy samples from vendors or a complimentary massage from our volunteer masseuses.

Food for family and friends will be avilable from food trucks. Everyone is welcome to enjoy the live music and vendor expo.  

On-Course Entertainment

Weather permitting, we will have on course music at three separate locations courtesy of the Blevins Middle School Jazz Ensemble, the African Drum Collective of Fort Collins, and the Poudre High School Drum Line.

Pace Groups

If you’re looking to hit a specific finish time, we have a team of pacers lined up to help you get there. If you have questions related to pacing, then be sure to stop by the pace group table at packet pickup on Saturday. We’ll have pace leaders for the following goal times: 1:30, 1:45, 2:00, 2:15, 2:30. Given the hilly nature of the course, mile splits will not be even. We will have suggested mile-for-mile pacing charts available at packet pickup.

Aid Stations

Vfuel sports drink and water will be available at all five aid stations. There will also be a port-a-john at each aid station, in addition to a first aid kit. Additional medical coverage will be provided by Poudre Valley Hospital EMS. Aid stations will be spaced out and staffed as follows:

Additional Information

Be sure to read through the race website for additional race details, instructions, rules, and directions.

See you Sunday April 23!

Thank you,
Nick Clark and Pete Stevenson, Gnar Runners LLC