The streets of the Phoenix-Scottsdale-Tempe area — often called the “Valley of the Sun” — are expected to fill with as many as 30,000 runners, walkers and wheelchair athletes in January 2016 with the 13th annual running of the P.F. Chang’s Rock & Roll Arizona Marathon & Half Marathon, which sees more than 15,000 runners cross the finish line in just the half marathon each year.
After years of running a point-to-point course that started in downtown Phoenix and finished in nearby Tempe on the campus of Arizona State University, the route was completely redesigned a couple of years ago to feature an out-and-back loop that starts and finishes near the ASU campus, and takes runners through Tempe and north into Scottsdale, where they’ll cross the Salt River twice and head through both Eldorado Park and a long stretch through Papago Park.
Like all of the “Rock & Roll”-themed running events, the Arizona race will also feature live bands playing music throughout the course, stationed roughly every other mile, along with cheerleading squads from local high schools and thousands of local spectators out to cheer on runners around the course. The race finish line will lie in the parking lot on the ASU campus, just outside Sun Devil Stadium.
Considered an excellent race for first-time marathoners and half-marathoners, thanks to its largely fast and flat course — the race follows a very gradual overall uphill from the start to about the mile 10 marker, and gains only about 150 feet in elevation throughout the first 10 miles of the half marathon — the Rock & Roll Arizona race also features a relay race for two-person teams.
Note that the full marathon will not share the same starting line as the half marathon; while the half marathon will start within the Arizona State University campus along Mill Avenue and 3rd Street, the full marathon will start at CityScape in downtown Phoenix, near West Washington Street and 3rd Street.
Runners in the half marathon will have 4 hours to complete their 13.1 miles, while those running the full marathon will have a 7-hour time limit on the course.
Due to the popularity of this event’s half marathon, organizers have adopted a wave start to allow plenty of room for all runners at the starting line and along the course throughout the race. The starting time for each won’t begin until the shoe chip crosses the starting line.
Highlights from Last Years Race (see video below)
Race Weather & Climate
Located among the hills, mountains and deserts of central southern Arizona, within a short drive of both nearby Tempe and Scottsdale, Phoenix typically sees January temperatures that average between 45°F and 67°F, with just under an inch of precipitation for the month.
On the day of the race (Jan. 17), the average low is 45°F and the average high is 68°F.
Starting Time: 7:45 AM
- $99 from September 16 – November 30, 2015
- $110 from December 1 – January 10, 2016
To reserve your spot in the winter 2016 running of Phoenix’s P.F. Chang’s Rock & Roll Arizona Marathon, Half Marathon, Relay or Mini Marathon,