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runDisney Race Information

Find general runDisney race information for all races and some frequently asked questions below. Your one stop shop for Disney race info!

NEW! Disneyland Halloween Half Marathon Weekend

Sep 5-8, 2024 – Disneyland, Anaheim, CA – New race weekend announced by runDisney! More info to come!

Wine and Dine Half Marathon Weekend

Oct 31-Nov 3, 2024 – WDW, Epcot, FL – Race weekend runs during Epcot’s Food and Wine Festival, usually the first weekend in Nov, and consists of a 5k, 10k, and a Half Marathon. Run the 10k and the Half to complete the Two Course Challenge.

Virtual 12ks of Christmas

December, 2024 – Virtual – Join in the merriment and run three 4ks wherever you find the Christmas spirit!

WDW Marathon Weekend

Jan 8-12, 2025 – WDW, Epcot, FL – Race weekend is always the first weekend after the first Monday in January. You can run a 5k, 10k, Half Marathon, or Full Marathon. Run the Half and Full Marathon to complete the Goofy Challenge or run all four races to complete the Dopey Challenge

Disneyland Half Marathon Weekend

Jan 30-Feb 2, 2025 – Disneyland, Anaheim, CA – Disneyland racing is back! This weekend consists of yoga, 5k, 10k, and Half Marathon. Finish the 10k and Half for to complete the Dumbo Double Dare!

Princess Half Marathon Weekend

Feb 20-24, 2025 – WDW, Epcot, FL – Race Weekend is the last weekend in February and consists of yoga, a 5k, a 10k, and a Half Marathon. Run the 10k and Half to complete the Glass Slipper Challenge!

2024 Springtime Surprise Race Weekend Logo

Springtime Suprise Weekend

Apr 18-21, 2024 | Apr 3-6, 2025 – WDW, Epcot, FL – Race weekend is the second weekend in April. While the theme changes it normally consists of yoga, a 5k, a 10k, and a 10-Miler. Finish the 10k and 10-Miler to complete the challenge!

Summer Virtual Series

A virtual series that consists of 3 virtual 5ks run from June thru August. You can also complete the challenge and run all three for a bonus medal.

How Do I Register?

RunDisney races are very popular and sell out quickly if not instantly. Each race has a different registration day so check out the information I have posted on my website or what’s posted on Registration usually opens at 10am ET/7am PT (9am CT/8am MT).

To prepare you will want to set up a runDisney account and make sure all your information is correct. If you are running a longer race (10-miler or longer) or challenge, then make sure you have your proof of time ready. You will need the race name, date, location, distance, time, and a link that runDisney can use to verify.

On registration day, you will want to make sure you on on the runDisney website for the race event 10-15 minutes ahead of the registration time. At the time of registration, runDisney will update the button to say “Register Now”. You can click on any race’s register button to register for any of the races so whichever switches first, click that one and then you will be in the queue. At first, the next screen may say something like “We thank you for your patience”, this means you are in the queue but runDisney hasn’t opened registration yet. Next, the screen will update with your wait time, it will likely say your wait is over an hour but you will likely not have to wait that long.

Once you are in, you will register for the race(s) you want, add them to your cart and finish your transaction. One note is that if the race you want sells out quickly it could sell out while it’s in your cart. It’s smart to go through the whole transaction for those races.

There is a great conversation on registration on the Rise and Run Podcast here starting around the 1 hour 20 minute mark:

Will your race sell out? The most popular races for any race weekend are the 10k, 5k, and Challenge the 10-Miler/Half Marathon will be the last to sell out. For WDW Marathon Weekend, Dopey will sell out first with the 5k and 10k, followed by the Half Marathon, the Marathon, and then the Goofy Challenge.

Expect the 5k, 10k and Challenge to sell out when registration opens or within a few hours. All other races will sell out in the next few days.

If it’s a new race weekend or one that is returning, it will sell out VERY quickly. Be ready on registration day and I wish you good luck!

Occasionally, runDisney will open up race slots, it’s not guaranteed and it happens unexpectedly and sells out quickly. You can also run for a charity which is a great way to run as well as benefit a great cause!

Do the races have a time limit?

RunDisney requires a 16-minute per mile pace for all races that are timed. This usually means that all 10ks, 10-Milers, Half Marathons, and Marathons. 5ks are usually untimed races that do not require the 16-minute mile pace.

How is the pace set and who are the balloon ladies?

The balloon ladies are volunteers that set the official 16-minute mile pace at the race. They get their name because they usually attach large helium balloons to their race outfit so that people can see them easily. They will be the last racers to cross the start line in the last corral and will continuously walk as close to a 16-minute per mile pace. Remember they are human so there is room for error and they are NOT paid by runDisney.

If you get passed by the balloon ladies then you may get swept from the course at the next check point. Behind the balloon ladies are usually course support personnel on bikes or other motorized vehicles who will warn you that you will be swept if you can’t catch up with the race pace. If you get swept, runDisney will put you onto a bus (the Parade Bus) and take you to the finish line area. I’ve heard mixed reports on how this goes but I believe you will receive your race participant medal on the bus, if you are attempting a challenge though, you will not get the challenge medal.

How do I avoid getting swept/removed from the course?

TRAIN! Find a training plan and stick to it and make sure to train at a pace faster than 16-minute per mile pace to give yourself some wiggle room. runDisney suggests training at a 15-minute per mile pace. RunDisney has official training plans online but there are many free training plans on the internet that will successfully get you to the finish.

Here are a few to get you started:

Another strategy some runners use to avoid getting swept is to get placed in a faster corral. Currently, runDisney only requires proof of time if you plan to run faster than a 2:15 half marathon or a 4:30 marathon and you submit a race time to get placed in the correct corral. If you run a race before the proof of time submission deadline and achieve a faster time it ensures you get placed in a higher corral.

By securing a higher corral, it puts more time between you and the balloon ladies who keep the official course cut off pace. For example, if there are 6 corrals, A thru F, and you can get a proof of time that places you in corral D, then you have an additional 15-25 minutes of buffer between you and the balloon ladies because it takes about 30-45 minutes to release all the runners at the start depending on the race. This time might not seem like a lot but a 15 minute difference means that for a half marathon you have an more than minute per mile extra each mile before you need to worry about being swept from the course.

What is the difference between clock time and net time?

Your clock time is based on the “universal” race clock. When the first runner starts this clock starts and will just keep running until the last runner finishes. Net Time is the time you actually took to run the race. So for example, if you are in corral C and you run a 3 hour half marathon and it took you 15 minutes to start after the first runner then your clock time is 3:15 but your net time is 3:00. Net Time is used for all age group placements while clock time is used for overall winners.

What is the race weekend expo?

All runners must go to the expo to get their bib, race shirts, and any other goodies you get with your registration. Each runner must go to the expo themself, you can not have another person pick up your bib for you.

At Disney World, the expo is at the ESPN Wide World of Sports and uses the three main buildings at the complex. One building houses bib pickup and race relations (if you have any concerns or need information). Another building is for vendors and race t-shirts pickup. The last building has the official race weekend merchandise for sale.

Three weeks to a month before the race weekend, RunDisney will share a sneak peak at the official race weekend merchandise. If you MUST get their merchandise you really need to plan to arrive for the first day of the expo which is the day before the first race, usually Thursday expect for WDW Marathon Weekend where the expo will start Wednesday.

Starting in 2023, runDisney introduced a virtual queue system for the Official Merchandise for the first day of the expo. Note, you can still go at any time to get your bib and shirts on the first day of the expo. Find details about it here:

RunDisney also sells official race merchandise in the finisher area after the race. Unsold merchandise from that race or any race distance from earlier in the weekend gets moved to the merchandise tent in the finisher area. For example, at the 10k of Princess Half Weekend, runDisney sells 5k and 10k race merchandise but not Half Marathon and Challenge merchandise in the finish area tent since that race hasn’t run yet.

Any tips for park touring?

Honestly, this depends on what your goals for your race weekend are. Is this a race centric weekend? Is park touring and the races equally important? Are you traveling solo or with others?

If you are mostly focused on the races then you should be prioritizing getting off your feet early, getting enough rest, and keeping stress low. For many this looks like running a race, then spending some time resting and eating after the rest and then maybe heading into the parks for 5-7 hours (11am-6pm for example) for some leisurely park time. This will allow you to rest both post race and then in the evening to get off your feet.

If you are trying to balance the race weekend and your park time, I recommend this schedule instead. Run your race, then quickly showering and eat and then try to head to the park for park opening or soon there after. Spend the morning at the park and then head back to the resort around lunch time, eat and rest for about 4 hours. Head back to the parks in the afternoon/evening until you feel like you need to get off your feet for the evening. This allows you the same amount of park time but you can prioritize missing the busiest part of the day and I have found I get better sleep in the afternoon when I know I’m not going to miss my very early morning alarm. For this type of park touring I also recommend getting a lunch reservation so you have a “hard stop” at lunch time to ensure you don’t keep playing the “just one more ride” mental game.