What started as a build-up to the BMO Vancouver Marathon, the ‘First Half’ has become a staple event in the city’s vibrant running culture. After 30 successful years with the Pacific Road Runners, the ‘First Half’ joined the RUNVAN® family in 2019 and continues to be a perfect training race leading up to the city’s only Marathon in May.
Canada’s Fastest Half Marathon offers a stunning out-and-back course past Sunset Beach, and along the Seawall towards Stanley Park before returning to the Roundhouse Community Centre in historic Yaletown. All runners receive a unique finisher’s medal, an exclusive tech tee, race bib, post-race food and more!
The event is the first race in the RUNVAN® Grand Slam race series.
February 9, 2020: Half Marathon
- Half Marathon finisher’s medal
- Exclusive tech tee
- Race bib with built-in timing chip
- Free refreshments
- Free, convenient and secure gear check
- On-course services including water, electrolyte, gels, first aid and more
- Exciting Finish Line in Yaletown
- Post-race celebrations with hot food and lively entertainment
- Age category and overall prizing
The ‘First Half’ concept started in 1988 when the Vancouver International Marathon Society approached the Pacific Road Runners to host a Half Marathon as a build-up event to the Marathon in May. With little hesitation, the club agreed and runners today still use the ‘First Half’ as a perfect part of their training for their Marathon in May. After 30 successful years, the ‘First Half’ has since come full-circle and, as of 2019, will be organized by the non-profit RUNVAN®.
“We thought it was time to pass along the torch, and it’s only fitting that we bring the ‘First Half’ back to the Vancouver International Marathon Society, another non-profit,” shares Race Director Terry Bushnell of the Pacific Road Runners. The event has been entirely organized by volunteers over the years.
“I’d like to take this opportunity to also thank everyone for their support of the ‘First Half’ Half Marathon, which has become a fixture in the local running scene,” adds Bushnell. RUNVAN® will continue to honour those initiatives you’ve grown to love.
From the Pacific Road Runners and RUNVAN®, thank you again for your support of the ‘First Half’ over the years. We look forward to seeing you again soon and continuing the amazing tradition of the ‘First Half’.