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What's on Tap

What's on Tap

Locals claim race titles at Rock 'n' Roll Marathon

Posted April 1, 2014
Updated April 13, 2014

10:30 a.m.: The top three male and female finishers in the Rock 'n' Roll Marathon and 1/2 Marathon were honored on stage at the Red Hat Amphitheater as the party rolled on in downtown Raleigh.

In all, the field included runners representing 49 states and five foreign countries. Forty percent of them came from outside of the Raleigh-Durham area, organizers said.

9:50 a.m.: Paul Himberger coasts across the finish line to capture the win. He is the first finisher, in 2:38: 57, in the marathon at the Rock 'n' Roll Marathon and 1/2 Marathon.

Running a 6:31 pace, Heidi Bretscher was the first woman to cross, in third place overall. She set a personal best with the 2:49:46.

Fans, families cheer marathon runners

9:45 a.m.: With the leaders of the marathon approaching the finish line, the crowd and the excitement is building in downtown Raleigh.

9:15 a.m.: Paul Himberger of Durham is leading the marathon after 20 miles and about two hours. 

Meanwhile, finishers of the 1/2 marathon are flooding across the finish line at Fayetteville and East Davie streets.

8:55 a.m.: Heidi Bretscher of Durham is leading all other women and is in third place overall in the marathon approaching mile 17. 

Marathon winner snaps the tape Marathon winner snaps the tape

8:45 a.m.: The first parts of the Rock 'n' Roll Marathon route have reopened to vehicular traffic, less than two hours after 12,500 runners started from downtown Raleigh. Parts of the course along Martin Luther King Boulevard south of Shaw University and Chavis Park are open.

8:20 a.m.: Tibor Vegh, of Raleigh, is the first to finish the Rock 'n' Roll course, running the 1/2 marathon in 1:09:32. Michelle Renee Langan won the women's half marathon.

Vegh said the bands along the route kept him moving.

"You get this boost of energy for at least the next mile and then you start to get weak but then there's another band to lift you up again," he said.

Women's winner crosses finish line at Rock 'n' Roll Marathon Women's winner crosses finish line at Rock 'n' Roll Marathon

7:55 a.m.: Leaders in the full and half marathons are flying through the course. Tibor Vegh, running at a 5:12 per mile pace, is projected to finish the 13.1-mile half marathon at just about 8:18 a.m.

In the 26.2-mile marathon, Paul Himberger, 28, of Durham, had finished 10K by 8 a.m. and was running at a 5:40 per mile pace.

7:45 a.m.: All runners in the full and half marathons are on the course for the 2014 Rock 'n' Roll Marathon. It took a little more than 30 minutes for the 12,500 registered participants to clear the start line and begin their race.

7:30 a.m.: With temperatures expected to push into the high 70s before the final runners cross the finish line, organizers of the Rock 'n' Roll Marathon and 1/2 Marathon put heat protection protocols in place to protect participants. Volunteers will offer Gatorade and ice at each comfort station. There is medical assistance available along the course. And after the race is run, cooling neck warps will help runners get their core body temperature back down.

7:10 a.m.: Elite runners were the first to start in the Rock 'n' Roll Marathon and 1/2 Marathon. The start, delayed to allow late arrivals to negotiate traffic, went off without a hitch with corrals of runners setting off every couple of minutes.

7:00 a.m.: With the start of the Rock 'n' Roll Marathon and 1/2 Marathon only minutes away, crowds were gathering along the race route and at the start/finish line downtown.

"Everybody's completely pumped up," said Laura, who was on site to root for her brother. "The music is incredible and the energy is incredible."

Elsewhere, a man planned to run the complete marathon while dribbling two basketballs.

6:45 a.m.: With vehicles still backed up headed northbound into Raleigh, organizers pushed back the starting gun for the Rock 'n' Roll Marathon to 7:10 a.m. to allow all runners to arrive. 

Organizers said some traffic tie-ups were to be expected in the race's inaugural year in Raleigh. They learn about traffic patterns on race day in every city, a spokesman said, and will improve in subsequent years. 

6:30 a.m.: Traffic eased as the sun came up and more and more of the 12,500 expected runners made it to the start line at the corner of Salisbury and Davie streets.

6:05 a.m.: Runners headed into downtown Raleigh for the Rock 'n' Roll Marathon saw brake lights along South Saunders Street and slow going on Interstate 40 as 12,000-plus tried to get to the start line for the 7 a.m. race.

Some who pre-paid for spots in downtown decks were being turned away as crowds built.


Map: Race routes, bands

The marathon begins and ends in the heart of downtown Raleigh, and runners will wind their way east to Chavis Park, north through the Oakwood neighborhood before making a turn to the west. The course passes William Peace University and Cameron Village.

Runners of the half marathon make the turn on the campus of North Carolina State University and head back to the start/finish line. Those who choose to run the full 26.2-mile marathon continue west on Hillsborough Street and past PNC Arena before circling back downtown. 

With more than 12,000 runners registered to participate and dozens of bands performing along the route, road closures are expected to make a major impact on traffic flow.

Roads will be closed starting at 6 a.m. April 13 and will be opened to traffic after runners have cleared the area, most by 10 a.m. Race organizers said they expect all roads to be open after 4 p.m.

Roads closed

The area of the start/finish line – South Salisbury and Fayetteville streets in downtown Raleigh – will be closed to vehicular traffic on Saturday, April 12, while crews set up to welcome the expected race spectators.

The following roads will be closed on race day, Sunday, April 13, from 6 a.m. to 4 p.m.

South Salisbury Street from South Street to West Hargett Street

South McDowell Street from West South Street to West Jones Street

North Blount Street from East North Street to Martin Luther King Boulevard and from Delway Street to East Peace Street

Martin Luther King Boulevard from Blount Street to Chavis Way

Chavis Way from MLK to East Davie Street 

West Hargett Street from South Dawson Street to Fayetteville Street

West Jones Street from North McDowell Street to North Wilmington Street

Bloodworth Street from East Davie Street to Oakwood Avenue

Brookside Drive from Watuaga Street to Glascock Street

Glascock Street from Brookside Drive to Wake Forest Road

Wake Forest Road from Glascock Street to Mordecai Drive

Peace Street from North Blount Street to West Johnson/Bellwood Drive

Clark Avenue from West Johnson/Bellwood Drive to Gardner Street

Hillsborough Street from Gorman Street to Pullen Road; westbound lanes of Hillsborough Street will be closed Gorman Street to Blue Ridge Road

Blue Ridge Road from Hillsborough Street to Trinity Road

Trinity Road from Blue Ridge Road to Edwards Mill Road

Edwards Mill Road from Trinity Road to Reedy Creek Road

Reedy Creek Road at Edwards Mill Road

Pullen Road from Hillsborough Street to Western Boulevard

Western Boulevard from Pullen Road to Hunt Drive

West Lenoir Street from South Saunders Street to South Boylan Avenue

South Saunders Street from Lake Wheeler Road to Lenoir Street

South Boylan Avenue from West Lenoir Street to West Morgan Street
 

Detailed road closure information is also available on the race website.

Getting around

In many places, the marathon will only take over half the roadway, allowing traffic to flow in limited lanes.

The following major roads will remain open on race day:

Capital Boulevard north and south

Eastbound lanes of Clark/Peace Avenue from Horne Street to North Blount Street

Eastbound lanes of Hillsborough Street from Blue Ridge Road to Gorman Street

Westbound lanes of Western Boulevard; eastbound Western Boulevard between Hunt Drive and MLK

Eastbound lanes of Martin Luther King Boulevard

Southbound Blue Ridge Road

Eastbound Trinity Road

Southbound Edwards Mill Road

Crossing guards will also be stationed along the course to allow cross traffic when it is safe to do so.

Transit to see delays, detours

The Rock 'n' Roll Marathon will also see changes to regular service on Capital Area Transit on both Saturday, April 12, and race day, Sunday, April 13.

The following bus detours are in effect April 12:

#2 – Falls of Neuse
Outbound – No detours. No missed stops.
Inbound – The route will miss stops 8063 and 8064.

# 3 – Glascock
Outbound – No detours. No missed stops.
Inbound –  The route will miss stops 8063 and 8064.

#4 – Rex Hospital
Outbound – No detours. No missed stops.
Inbound – The route will miss stops 8063 and 8064.

#6 – Crabtree Valley
Outbound – No detours and no missed stops.
Inbound – The route will miss stop 8064.

#7 – South Saunders
Outbound – The route will miss stops 9743 and 9744.
Inbound – The route will miss stops 9165 and 8343.

#8 – Northclift
Outbound – The route will miss stop 9023.

Inbound – The route will miss stops 8063 and 8064.

#10 – Longview
Outbound – No detours and no missed stops.
Inbound – The route will miss stops 8063 and 8064.

#11 – Avent Ferry
Outbound – The route will miss stop 9476.
Inbound – The route will miss stops 9165 and 8343.

#12 – Method
Outbound – No detours and no missed stops.
Inbound – The route will miss stops 8063 and 8064.

#13 – Chavis Heights
Outbound – No detours and no missed stops.
Inbound – The route will miss stops 9203, 9476, 9477, 9776, 9777, 9742, and 8908.

#15 – Wake Medical
Outbound – No detours and no missed stops.
Inbound – The route will miss stops 8661, 8662, 9662, 8063, and 8064.

#16 – Oberlin Road
Outbound – No detours and no missed stops.
Inbound – The route will miss stop 8064.

#18 – Worthdale
Outbound – No detours and no missed stops.
Inbound – The route will miss stop 9203.

#21 – Caraleigh
Outbound – No detours and no missed stops.
Inbound – The route will miss stops 9165 and 8343.

The R-Line will not service the Raleigh Convention Center. The bus will use the Memorial Auditorium stop instead. The route will miss stops 9916 and 9900.

The following detours will be in place on April 13 from 6:45 a.m. until 4 p.m.:

#1 – Capital Boulevard (only for 8:15 a.m. trip)
Outbound – The route will miss the 8003, 8006, 8007, 9384, 8008, 8009, 8010, 8011, 8012, 8013, and 8014 stops.
Inbound –  The route will miss the 8049, 8050, 8051, 8052, 8053, 8054, 9328, 9473, 9442, 9471, 9788, 9789, and 9790 stops.

#2 – Falls of Neuse (only for 8 a.m. trip)
Outbound – The route will miss the 8003, 8006, 8571, and 8572 stops.
Inbound – The route will miss the 8062, 9662, 8063, and 8064.

#2 – Falls of Neuse (for 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. trips)
Outbound – Regular route. There will be no missed stops.
Inbound – The route will miss the 8063 and 8064 stops.

#4 – Rex Hospital (only for 8:15 a.m., 9:15 a.m., 10:15 a.m. trips)
Outbound – The route will miss the 8070, 8071, 9673, 8228, 8229, 8230, 8232, 8234, 8235, 9386, 8237, 8238, 8240, 8241, 8242, 8243, 8244, and 8245 routes.
Inbound – The route will miss the 8270, 8271, 8272, 8273, 8274, 8276, 8277, 8278, 8280, 8282, 1201, 9483, 1703, 8063, and 8064 stops.

#4 – Rex Hospital (for 11:15 a.m. to 3:15 p.m. trips)
Outbound – The route will miss the 8237, 8238, 8240, 8241, 8242, 8243, 8244, and 8245 stops.
Inbound – The route will miss the 8270, 8271, 8272, 8273, 8274, 8276, 8277, 8278, 8063, and 8064 stops

#5 – Biltmore Hills (only for 8:30 a.m. trip)
Outbound – The route will miss the 9187, 9730, 9315, 9316, 8321, and 9317 stops.
Inbound – Regular route. There will be no missed stops.

#7 – South Saunders (only for 8 a.m. trip – load and depart from Purple Zone)
Outbound – The route will miss the 9743 stop.
Inbound – The route will miss the 9165 and 8343 stops

#7 – South Saunders (for 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. trips)
Outbound – The route will miss the 9743 and 9744 stops.
Inbound – The route will miss the 8165 and 8343 stops.

#11 – Avent Ferry (Only for 8 a.m. trip)
Outbound – The route will miss the 9476, 8396, 9601, 9425, 9807, 9808, 9600, 9810, 9613, 8525, 9614, and 8526 stops.
Inbound – The route will miss the 8566, 8567, 9612, 8568, 8569, 8559, 8570, 8422, 9165, and 8343 stops.

#11 – Avent Ferry (from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. trips)
Outbound – There will be no stops on North Carolina State University’s campus. The route will miss the 9476, 9744, 9601, 9425, 9807, 9808, 9600, 9810, 9613, 8525, 9614, and 8526 stops.
Inbound – There will be no stops on North Carolina State University’s campus. The route will miss the 8566, 8567, 9612, 8568, 8569, 8559, 8570, 8422, 9165, and 8343 stops.

#12 - Method (only for 8 a.m., 9 a.m., 10 a.m. trips)
Outbound – The route will miss the 8003, 8006, 8007, 8571, 8572, 8708, 8573, 8709, 8574, 9677, 8575, 8576, 9170, 9172, 9173, 8237, 8238, 8240, 8584, 8586, 8587, and 8588 stops.
Inbound – The route will miss the 8588, 9407, 8601, 8597, 8598, 8888, 8599, 8273, 8274, 8276, 9010, 9171, 9487, 8863, 9302, 9303, 9304, 8608, 8610, 9174, 8058, 8059, 8061, 8062, 9662, 8063, and 8064 stops.

#12 - Method (for 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. trips)
Outbound – The route will miss the 9172, 9173, 8237, 8238, 8240, 8584, 8586, 8587, and 8588 stops.
Inbound – The route will miss the 8588, 9407, 8601, 8597, 8598, 8888, 8599, 8273, 8274, 8276, 9010, 9171, 9487, 8063, and 8064 stops.

#15 – Wake Medical (only for 8 a.m. trip)
Outbound – The route will miss the 8187, 8188, 8618, 8614, 8619, and 8620 stops.
Inbound – The route will miss the 8654, 8655, 8656, 8657, 8658, 8659, 8660, 8661, 8662, 9662, 8063, and 8064 stops.

#31 – New Hope Commons (only for 8 a.m. and 9 a.m. trips)
Outbound – The route will miss the 8002, 8003, 8006, 8007, 9416, 9717, 9417, 9418, 9419, 9420, 9718, 9421, 8192, 8193, 9422, 9381, 9440, and 8194 stops.
Inbound – The route will miss the 9563, 9464, 8522, 9147, 9151, 9454, 9453, 8061, 8062, 9662, 8063, and 8064 stops.

R-Line – (Detours from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.)
The route will miss the 9913, 9914, 9916, 9900, and 9901 stops

R-Line – (Detours from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m.)
The route will miss the 9900 and 9901 stops.

58 Comments

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  • Shawn Kennedy Apr 14, 2014

    Personally Im a christain and an avid runner who loves being outside and running race's. I think Raleigh having events such as these are great.It a awesome feeling running in a group of that many people everyone having a good time and enjoy being healthy. However to me holding this event on a Sunday was not a good choice and disrespectful to those who go to the downtown churches. My only thought is next time do it on a Saturday ! Then everyone is happy there is no problems or issues and everyone wins! its a no brainer..Come on people have a clue!

  • George Herbert Apr 14, 2014

    I participated in the half marathon. From my perspective, it looked like most of the downtown churches along the route would not have any problem with their services. I was in the last group of runners--starting at 7:45. We were clear of Blount Street by 8:30. The route did bring us back to downtown, but there were plenty of ways around it.

  • Super Hans Apr 13, 2014

    View quoted thread



    Agreed. This whole thing was a travesty in so many ways.

  • tsquaring Apr 13, 2014

    The headline should read: "Two Dead After WRAL Sponsored Palm Sunday Church Blocking Marathon"

  • rgsjrs Apr 13, 2014

    The best thing that Raleigh could do would be to never allow this event here,ever. A "for profit" race ordained by the city council. There were many runners but the total was relatively small compared to Raleigh's population.
    By the way, when will I get my check for my portion of the "profit" ?
    If you want to run so much,get all the runners together,everyone can put $ in to buy about 8 acres of land, pave several tracks and run as long and as much as you want to.

  • billisgod Apr 13, 2014

    The day of the race: everything seemed well planned. The road closures were known well in advanced. Knew which road to get on to get dropped off. Personally, I thought it was well-planned and well attended, not only by the runners (sold out) but by spectators.

    The route is beautiful. It showcases Raleigh well. Running back into the city and seeing our city-skyline was beautiful. It was nice to share this with people outside of Raleigh and show how beautiful our city is. I hope it comes back. I hope it gets the word out about how fantastic Raleigh is and brings in more cool stuff, not just these types of road races, but other events. Great for business. Great for Raleigh residents. Great for pride of Raleighites.

  • packguy Apr 13, 2014

    I think the residents of downtown Raleigh and the folks who want to access downtown for church or any other activities need to organize to make sure these events get moved somewhere that doesn't heavily impact our ability to carry on our daily lives. My goodness, I love loud music (I drove to Va Beach last night to see Bruce Springsteen), but you're going to put rock bands in the downtown area and around a concentration of churches on PALM SUNDAY? Give me a break. You couldn't insult and inconvenience more people if you TRIED.

  • rkorenw Apr 13, 2014

    I just want to thank WRAL and the race organizers for working so hard to inform us of road closures and re-openings. I live downtown and frankly I'm burned out and pretty grouchy about another event that forces me to change my weekend plans, but they did a great job with this one and it is much appreciated. Just please, please can we not have every event downtown?!

  • RM24 Apr 13, 2014

    TARHEELTRAVELER21
    Yes, I would feel the same. Though we have many differences, Muslims and Christians still worship the same God. I wouldn't support impeding anyone's worship of God for a road race.

    Surely you are not this confused and are just trolling to upset folks.

  • mom97 Apr 13, 2014

    What exactly is a cooling neck "warp"? Guess the editor's coffee had not kicked when this was edited for spelling as it should have been "wrap".

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