Locals Win Transamerica Rock ‘n’ Roll Half Marathon San Francisco

Elle Pishny on her way to victory.

Thousands enjoy inaugural event. 

SAN FRANCISCO – A cool fog settled over Aquatic Park on Sunday morning as the inaugural Transamerica Rock ‘n’ Roll San Francisco Half Marathon took off, meandering along a stunningly scenic course including an invigorating run across the Golden Gate Bridge and a waterfront finish.

Ideal running weather helped propel runners up the hills of San Francisco and across the finish line. Local runner Chris Mocko, 27, led the men’s field in 1 hour, 16 minutes, 59 seconds, beating Peter Birney of Walnut Creek by nearly two minutes. After a rough recent bout of training, Mocko said he was surprised and pleased to take the win in his hometown.

PHOTOS: Rock ‘n’ Roll San Francisco Half Marathon

“My goal today was just to survive so it’s nice to get some momentum for the season. It was a beautiful day – I should have run ten minutes faster with the weather. The crowds were great too and all the cheering and music really helped me across the bridge.”

Twenty-five-year-old Tim Cole came in third, finishing in 1:20:13.

On the women’s race, Elle Pishny, 27, was the only female in sight, running alongside the lead men. Finishing fourth overall, the San Francisco local won in 1:20:30. As she crossed the Golden Gate Bridge, runners on the other side were cheering her on.

“I was getting a lot of ‘go girl!’ and they were really supporting me,” she said. “It was perfect weather and perfect temperature, which is why people love the Bay Area. The bands were really great too and had great rhythm which helped keep me going.”

MORE PHOTOS: Runners Rock San Francisco!

Title sponsor Transamerica raised $4079 for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital through a unique “Charity Chaser” program. For every runner that “Tomorrow Makers” chaser Jackie Armstrong passed in the race (starting from the last corral), one dollar was donated to St. Jude. Armstrong, who finished in 1:41:12, ran strong, passing more than 4,000 runners.

Also taking part in the inaugural race was Roger Craig, a three-time Super Bowl champion with the San Francisco 49ers. Craig helped to bring the Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon Series to the Bay Area in 2006 with Rock ‘n’ Roll San Jose Half Marathon. Running with his son Alexander, Craig finished in 1:51:02.

“It was an amazing race,” said Roger Craig. “It was the most relaxed and peaceful half marathon I’ve ever run with all the beautiful scenery, water and trails. People were having a great time out there and were attacking and having fun on the challenging hills. This race is great for the area and I know next year will be even more successful.”

Inaugural Transamerica Rock ‘n’ Roll San Francisco Half Marathon

San Francisco, CA, Sunday, April 7, 2013

Men

1) Chris Mocko, 27, San Francisco, CA, 1:16:59

2) Peter Birney, 28, Walnut Creek, CA, 1:18:57

3) Tim Cole, 25, San Francisco, CA, 1:20:13

Women

1) Elle Pishny, 27, San Francisco, CA, 1:20:30

2) Leslee Hoey, 43, Downingtown, PA, 1:29:29

3) Anna Gunn, 42, Walnut Creek, CA, 1:30:59

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