Disclaimer: I received a free entry to the Hot Chocolate Phoenix 15k as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review, find and write race reviews!"
The Hot Chocolate race series is always such a popular event. I have participated many times, but this was my first time running the new downtown Phoenix course. I actually trained for the 15k - it was my longest distance since the pandemic, and gave me something to focus on. The expo was Friday and Saturday at the convention center downtown. I took the light rail, which I highly recommend. I got there right when it opened and was in and out quickly.
The actual race started at Wesley Bolin Plaza, which I was not familiar with. I ended up getting together with friends and taking an uber. It was a crisp Phoenix morning, which definitely put you in the mood for hot chocolate! The 5k started at 7:25 am and the 15k started at 8:25. Corrals were set up very efficiently and signage was good.
The course wound around several sections of downtown Phoenix. Most water stops included chocolate and/or some honey stinger goodies as well. The course was flat and fast, only one or two inclines.
Given my numerous injuries in the past year or so, and a cutback in mileage, I'm super pleased with how it turned out. I felt good, and finished in 1:38, top 1/3 of my age group.
The hot chocolate really hit the spot. I brought most of the other goodies home to my son. They handed out the finisher mugs pretty efficiently, but seating is an issue. There are signs "No sitting or standing" all over the parking lot. It's hard to enjoy these hard-earned goodies and still abide by these rules.
Let's talk swag and bling! Hot Chocolate has always given out really nice jackets that people actually want to wear again - and this year was no exception! This year we received black puffy lightweight jackets, which look really nice and fit well. And the medals were nice, large, and distance-specific, which I always appreciate. I also enjoyed being able to scan my bib for my results immediately. Next year's race will take place on December 11, 2022. Until next time!
Hi, I'm Emily! I'm an avid runner in Arizona with a passion for travel and racing around the country!