The Challenges of Creating a Historic Race: The Binational Half Marathon

The Binational Race, a race that unites the cities of San Diego and Tijuana, is more than just a running event. It’s a symbol of unity, a testament to the power of sport, and a historic moment that transcends borders. But how did this extraordinary event come to be? Let’s delve into the making of this historic race.

The idea for the Binational Half Marathon was born among a group of American and Mexican runners who live in this region and have participated in the main races that take place in Southern California and Northern Baja California.

In 2020 when group activities were limited by the pandemic, outdoor running was one of the few activities that was allowed. We ran every day and each time a little bit farther. We didn´t focus on distance; one day could be 25 km, another 35 km, or even a whole marathon.We ran in our neighborhood, through the streets of Tijuana, and in Coronado, but we became bored of doing the same courses. So one day, we decided to start from Tijuana to Glorietta Bay Park in Coronado.

While we were running we develop the idea of creating a race that crossed the border, knowing that for immigration reasons it would have to start in San Diego and end in Tijuana.

We held in our hands the idea of organizing the first half marathon in history that crossed the border between the United States and Mexico.

In San Diego, we were recieved to present our proyect by Todd Gloria´s office. During the meeting, we met with representatives from the county, the city, the state, the federation and immigration agents. In just 45 minutes, we received a favorable response from everyone, and they offered us their full support.

In Tijuana, we contacted the IMDET director, who was very excited to join the project and guide us to begin the process.

Now the challenge was to coordinate both cities to schedule a date that worked for everyone. The date underwent several changes; initially set for October 15th 2023, it was then moved to May 5th 2023. We are thrilled to announce that the first edition of the Binational Race is now officially scheduled on the sports calendars of both cities for September 15th, 2024.

We are deeply thankful to all who listened to our idea and are collaborating to make our project a reality.

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