What a difference training can make. Final result time of 2:14:04, a 10:15 pace for 13.1 miles (including the grueling 10-11 mile stretch where it seemed to be constantly uphill). That represents a good 11 minute decrease from the National Half Marathon. And of course it didn't also come with the near shock levels of reaction that I had to the last race (I was in seriously bad shape at the end of the National HM... like sick for 2 days bad).
And what a difference competant management can make. Adequate water, poweraide, and even sports beans at one point. None of this running out of cups crap like at the National Marathon. Strong presense of volunteers, no shortage of medical personnel, and a well organized ending. It was downright refreshing.
Though I could have done with a little less rain. I was a serious drowned rat by the end of the run, with a period intense rain just as I got to the downtown proper area. I literally wrung my pants out a couple of times during the race and my feet were soaked halfway through. I know that on some level I had more confidence on this court because I used to live in (and run around) Fredericksburg so most of the course was known to me. The course itself was nice, relatively flat, plenty of interesting things to look at and (given the hour and weather on a Sunday) a good crowd of supporters.
A very pretty course and I highly encourage people to do it, it was a great race and course.