Fargo Half Marathon, North Dakota, USA – 9th May 2015

Race report by the globe-trotting Howard MacLennan:

The event was very pleasant in this old Norwegian/American community. Just to let you know the film Fargo wasn’t actually filmed in Fargo.

This year the event started & ended in the Fargodome, plus you can actually pick up a GPS signal inside for your watches. The noise was booming inside from the supporters & runners. It was helpful to keep out of the early morning cold, place your bags, normal toilets & pick up many free goodies. Under Armour were the event organisers whom provided quite useful reusable bag. Plus you get your free tee-shirt before the event. The race course changes each year; normally a loop course, the area is very flat & is a must do racecourse qualify if you want to participate in the Boston marathon for Americans. Friday is the 5k, Saturday is the full marathon, half marathon & 10k. Various start times & varied routes well marked. You can practically join in anywhere you think at the start with the pacers. Unfortunately we were just a little late & joined right at the back when the gun went off. Generally you run past the many beautiful wooden styled homes, local businesses like cafes, old cinema, railway stations, colleges & University etc. Many American flags were waving, followed by the North Dakota flags & at times the Norwegian flags. Practically every street has supporters from the area; many children wanting to high five, live bands from rock to old Norweigan folk music, plenty of water & power aid drinks stops.

The results were very quick to come through by email & linked you straight away to a website that constantly updates plus have your certificate to print off. It has an interesting aspect as it lets you know how many people you overtook & vice versa.

As we started at the back, the beginning was about negotiating to run past many runners. I overtook 3011 by the first 10k & 361 by the last. 4803 participants ran, not the suspected over 8000. Possible drop outs. Had a respectable time of 1.41.13 as I’ve been injured for most of the year. I apologise for not wearing my vest, forgot to bring it & suspect it is collecting dust since the cross country season.

I would definitely come back here again to race. The people are very hospitable, great shops, cafe’s, restaurants, art galleries & the doughnuts are way better than Krispy Kremes. Plus Fargo borders Minnesota where clothes are tax free & is the state of 10,000 lakes. Plus just North is Winnipeg in Canada, so there is a lot of places to visit & easily accessible by car.