FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Disney Salutes U.S. Troops With Companion Race During
Sold-Out Disney Marathon Weekend
LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fl (Jan. 4, 2011) – More than 300 U.S. military personal
in Iraq will take part in a Disney half marathon in Baghdad during the Walt
Disney World Marathon Weekend presented by CIGNA, which will feature more
than 53,000 runners at Walt Disney World in suburban Orlando this weekend.
The runDisney Heroes Race in Baghdad on Saturday will involve service men
and women based at Victory Base Complex trekking 13.1 miles through the
Iraqi desert while simultaneously more than 27,000 runners – a new race
record - run the same distance during the Disney Half Marathon. Both races
will be linked by satellite so runners and spectators at both events can
view live video of each race. Runners in both races will receive official
runDisney race bibs, shirts and finisher medals.
The companion race is just one of the many new twists to this year's Disney
Marathon Weekend. In addition, runners who finish the 26.2-mile Disney
Marathon will receive complimentary entry into Walt Disney World the next
day as part of Marathon Monday at Disney. Also, finishers will receive a
new Mickey Mouse medal.
"The runDisney Heroes Race is our way of honoring the courageous men and
women of our armed forces who put their lives on the line every day,'' said
Kathleen Duran, runDisney Sports Area Manager. "With the salute to the
troops and new features like Marathon Monday and the new race medal, the
Disney Marathon Weekend is unquestionably our signature event among the
four runDisney events we stage each year."
In all, runners from all 50 states and 60 other countries will take part in
a variety of Disney Marathon Weekend events, such as the Disney Family Fun
Run 5K on Friday, Mickey Mile and Mickey Marathon Kids Fest on Friday and
Saturday, the Disney Half-Marathon on Saturday and the Disney Marathon on
Sunday. And once again more than 5,000 runners are putting themselves to
the ultimate test - the Goofy's Race and a Half Challenge which involves
running the half-marathon on Saturday and the marathon on Sunday. There's
also the Health & Fitness Expo from Thursday-Saturday at ESPN Wide World of
Sports Complex which features running merchandise, equipment and
running-related seminars by leading authorities such as renowned marathon
trainer Jeff Galloway, the official training consultant for runDisney.
All eyes will once again be on men's defending champion Adriano Bastos.
The colorful Brazilian is going for his seventh straight Disney Marathon
win and eighth overall. Bastos first won the Disney Marathon in 2003 and
has won six straight since 2005.
For more information on the Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend or to
register for future runDisney events, visit www.rundisney.com. For
coverage throughout this event follow us on Twitter (@disneysports) and
Facebook (Disney Sports).
The runDisney series is a program of half marathon and marathon events that
provide runners unique opportunities to run through Disney theme parks.
Race participants also get to earn Disney-themed medals, experience
legendary Disney entertainment and guest service, and ultimately celebrate
their accomplishments with a Disney vacation. The original event in the
series, the Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend presented by CIGNA, takes
place each January and features both marathon and half marathon distances.
Other races at Walt Disney World in Florida include the Disney Princess
Half Marathon presented by Lady Foot Locker in February and the Disney Wine
& Dine Half Marathon in September. The Disneyland Half Marathon takes
place each Labor Day Weekend in California. More than 75,000 people
participate in runDisney events each year. For more information visit