This race and course are epic for many reasons.
The number of runners is stunning, typically in excess of 25,000. The race course is stunning, with the centerpiece being the crossing of the Arthur Ravenel Bridge that is about 3 miles long and a centerspan elevation of 250 feet.
Everybody starts out in corrals based upon estimated finish times and it does not seem overly crowded at the start. The first two miles are very flat and easy, which gives you time to warm up and get ready for a one mile incline at about a 5% grade. This hill is a soul sucker and if you have not trained on hills, or even if you have, it can defeat you mentally.
Once you reach the peak of the hill at about the 3 mile mark, it is downhill for about 2 miles and a welcome change. However, going up that hill may have drained you so much that you can’t take advantage of the downhill track.
The last mile is through the city of Charleston and very flat with a few easy turns.
Make sure that you put the hammer down for the last 2/10 of a mile to the finish line so that you get the best possible time.
After you are done, there is a large party atmosphere with plenty of food and water available.
There are plenty of hotels in the area and Charleston is a tourist destination city so try to plan on sticking around for a couple of days if you are from out of town.
A map is below.