Half-marathon participation fell in 2016 while number of halves increased

modesto half marathon
The Modesto Half Marathon, part of the Modesto Marathon, attracted 1,389 entries in 2016.

Following a national trend among longer-distance road races, half-marathon participation continued to decline in 2016.

According to a recently released report from Wichita, Kan.-based Running USA, the number of half-marathon finishers in 2016 was about 1.9 million, down from 1.97 million in 2015. Both years had declined from the record high of slightly more than 2 million finishers in 2014.

Although finisher numbers dropped, the number of half-marathons hit a record 2,800 in the United States in 2016, up from 2,700 in 2015.

The Airbnb Brooklyn Half Marathon retained the top spot last year with 27,428 finishers. Missing from 2016 was the San Francisco Nike Women’s Half Marathon, which had attracted 25,100 finishers in 2015.

Four Rock ‘n’ Roll events and five Disney events were in the top 15 halves as far as finishers.

No. 15 on the list was the Rock ‘n’ Roll Philadelphia Half Marathon, with 12,248 finishers.

Locally, the Modesto Marathon had 1,389 entrants in 2016, while the Two Cities Marathon had a combined (Clovis Half, 1,324; and Fresno Half, 759) 2,083 entrants.

The Bakersfield Half Marathon, part of the Bakersfield Marathon, had 818 finishers that same year.

The Peace Officer Memorial Half Marathon in Modesto had 479 entrants, and the Avenue of the Vines Half Marathon in Acampo had 457 entries in 2016.