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Rock 'n' Roll Marathon will have fewer hills in 2015

Posted November 6, 2014
Updated March 21, 2015

Rock 'n' Roll Marathon in downtown Raleigh, N.C. on April13, 2014. 12,500 runners made it to the capital city for a day of music and running. Paul Himberger won the men's marathon with a time of 2:38:57 and Heidi Bretscher won the women's marathon with 2:49:46. Both runners from Durham, N.C. (Chris Baird / WRAL Contributor).

— Participants in the Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon Series in Raleigh will see a flatter course in 2015.

Among the complaints voiced by runners after the inaugural Rock 'n' Roll Marathon in the City of Oaks was that the course was hillier than expected.

The 2015 marathon and half marathon will take place April 12, 2015, on a revised route that adds segments through North Carolina State University's Centennial Campus and Meredith College campus as well as around Lake Johnson.

"Most notably, the difficult Edwards Mill stretch has been removed, as has the out and back down Reedy Creek," said Scott Dupree, executive director of the Greater Raleigh Sports Alliance.

"Of course, this is Raleigh, not Kansas, and we can’t avoid hills altogether, but runners will absolutely notice an improvement in that regard."

Course map

Both races start in downtown Raleigh and wind east past Chavis Park, Oakwood Cemetery and William Peace University.

The 1/2 marathon route diverges from the marathon on the campus of NC State and winds back down Western Blvd to return to the Fayetteville Street finish line.

The marathon route heads west to the campus of Meredith College, then south to Lake Johnson before a return through Centennial Campus and to the finish line.


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  • Cleanup on Aisle Cool Nov 7, 2014

    I ran the RNR here in Raleigh - but never again. The music was not conducive to running - would rather just have my headphones. The hills were bad - Boylan Ave was the worst hill and was at the end! And what is this nonsense about adding Lake Johnson to the race... to eliminate hills? Have you ever run around Lake Johnson? Steepest hills of any paved trail in Raleigh, with broken pavement only 8 ft wide. It's like running on a roller coaster track. I run it all the time to strengthen my legs and ankles- because it's so difficult.

  • JennyB Nov 7, 2014

    The music was a disappointment. The crowds were amazing. The support and signs were awesome and made it enjoyable. The course was not that great but it definitely pushed me. I'd participate again but frankly, I think the fee is just too high right now.

  • nonPC Nov 7, 2014

    View quoted thread

    Run at your own risk...people should know their own body, be responsible for yourself. As for one of the people who died, didnt he have a murmur? Which I doubt would have been found before hand. It is a tragedy, but it is also a marathon (both of them were competing in the half)...not a 5k...its not the organizers responsibility to watch over your choice to run.

  • nonPC Nov 7, 2014

    View quoted thread

    Thank you for your support! The crowds definitely lift our spirits!

  • Marley Higgins Nov 7, 2014
    user avatar

    "Please do not comment here unless you have ran a marathon." - sure. also, if you've never murdered, please don't comment on those stories. same for child molestation, child abuse, and police brutality. in fact, unless the story is about you, refrain, please.


  • regbill Nov 7, 2014

    I want to see all the glitches worked out before I do it again. Last year was not too fun. Traffic out of control, hilly course, too little port-a-johns, music not ready when I ran by the first 5 or 6 stages. Not offering sports drinks at all of the stations. Once other runners tell me these things are worked out, I'll try it again.

  • spiritseeker Nov 7, 2014

    Just checked the course map and for once I will not be barricaded inside my house because of road closures. This article says fewer hills, but the runners are going to love the hill before mile post 10 where they enter the grounds of Meredith off of Faircloth.

  • Thomas Goodwin Nov 7, 2014
    user avatar

    Come on out to our New River Marathon in Todd next year. You will never complain about Raleigh again.

  • Clinton Tingen Nov 7, 2014
    user avatar

    Don't buy into this, City of Oaks says it every year. Don't like the hills, don't run Raleigh or Atlanta. Pick your marathon for the course not for convenience.

  • niall Nov 6, 2014

    Looking forward to it. It will be my 4th in a year. And I'm not going to miss going up Edwards Mill. At All.