Since yesterday it is official: I will be running the NYC Half again in 2019. It is my favorite race here in New York. The NYC Half Marathon was completely redesigned in 2018 and again slightly changed in 2019. Take a look at the NYC Half Marathon course with me and find out about the new course for 2019. I have also worked on a course strategy for the NYC Half which you will find at the end of this article.
Half Marathon NYC 2019
As most of you may know the old NYC Half Marathon course took runners from Central Park to Wall Street with a pretty hilly start but ending almost downhill for the last 6 miles. Now the NYC Half new course will take runners from Brooklyn to Manhattan. The new NYC Half Marathon course will start in Prospect Park in Brooklyn, head over the Manhattan Bridge, and finish in Central Park.
The NYC Half course will make the runners pass the City’s most iconic sights like Grand Army Plaza in Brooklyn, the United Nations, Grand Central Terminal, Times Square, and Central Park.
How large is the New York City Half Marathon?
The NYC Half hosted by NYRR is the 61st largest running event in the world. The NYC Half starts at 7:30 AM in Brooklyn and attracts over 20.000 runners each year. Oftentimes record-breaking and extremely cold but still one of the most fun races you can possibly run in the greatest city in the world.
NYC Half Marathon course: The new route 2019
I enjoyed running the new course last year, it is much harder than the old one and I can’t wait to share the newest updates on the NYC Half course with you today.
Before, runners started in Central Park with the hills. Running the West Side Highway wasn’t super exciting after that but it was slightly downhill the entire time. With the new course of the NYC Half, that was changed in 2018 runners have to be ready for the hills in the end and have to face a hill in the very beginning in Prospect Park.
Where does the NYC Half Marathon start?
The NYC Half starts in Prospect Park where runners will be running east on Center Drive in Prospect Park. In 2019 runners will now run left onto East Drive and run up the hill. So the first hill of the course will be right at mile 1. Then turn right to leave Prospect Park at mile 2 to run south on Flatbush Avenue. The NYC Half Marathon course will make a U-turn right after so that runners will head back up to Flatbush Avenue toward Grand Army Plaza. This part of the race right before heading onto Manhattan Bridge is a nice downhill.
The challenges of the NYC Half Marathon Course
The new NYC Half Marathon course will make runners cross the Manhattan Bridge into lower Manhattan, and pass through the Lower East Side before heading north on the FDR Drive. Around that time, we will see the sunrise with amazing views of Brooklyn and Queens skylines. Mile 11 is my favorite part of the race because the course of the NYC Half 2019 will take us East 42nd Street, passing United Nations, famous Grand Central Terminal and Bryant Park before heading on the famous Times Square.
After enjoying the probably loudest cheering zones of the race, runner will turn right onto Central Park South/West 59th Street. The new course of the NYC Half will now have runners enter Central Park at Grand Army Plaza in Manhattan. At this point, you can already smell the finish line. The East Drive will take you north where you will make a left onto 72nd Street Transverse. Your final turn onto West Drive will take you slightly north of Tavern on the Green to the finish line.
NYC Half Course Strategy 2019
The new course of the NYC Half is tricky and considerate as moderate. It has some elevation but also some nice downhill parts. I was lucky to attend an event from NYRR where the coaching staff explained tactics for the new course. Here is the course strategy for the NYC Half 2019.
Every one of you who is running the new NYC Half Marathon course: I wish you the best of luck! I can’t wait to see you all on March 17. Here is more information about the new course and also a map that shows you the exact route.