For over 100 years San Francisco has hosted the Bay to Breakers

Attire on Sunday at the Bay to Breakers ranged from a Hot Cheetos bag outfit to shark and bovine costumes -- to proudly worn birthday suits -- as thousands of runners raced across San Francisco in the annual Bay to Breakers footrace from the city’s eastern side to Ocean Beach .

With attendance for the 7.5-mile race rebounding from pandemic doldrums, organizers reported 17,000 registered runners, up from 12,000 last year. The walkers, runners and revelers started off at 8 a.m. from Main and Howard streets near the Embarcadero and filled the streets westward, chugging up the Hayes Street Hill and racing through Golden Gate Park to the shore. 

Colin Bennie of San Francisco won first place and completed the race in 35 minutes and 49 seconds (photo).  The fastest women was Sarah Anderson, who finished in 43 minutes and 2 seconds.

At the halfway mark Sunday, near Fell and Broderick streets, the scent of sizzling bacon-wrapped hot dogs and pop music blaring from speakers filled the air as families and onlookers cheered from the sidelines. As is customary, most runners were in wacky costumes, including the likes of a furry Elmo suit and bee and duck attire.

Among the numerous “centipede” runner teams was one group dressed in a Golden Gate Bridge outfit. Other participants were naked, wearing only hats and tennis shoes in 55-degree weather. For most, the idea was not to win the race, and many racers stopped to take a break and photos with their friends or gobble down hot dogs.

“It’s just such an iconic San Francisco event,” said Seth Cotterell, who donned a Hamilton-inspired dress, pearl necklace, black dangly earrings and black sneakers. It was his first time back running Bay to Brakers since he first ran it nearly 20 years ago, he said. 

Although C.J. Timloy did not sign up for this year’s race, she dressed up anyway in a Where’s Waldo costume to get in the spirit. Timloy, her wife and a friend trekked from the Mission District to the Panhandle park for a picnic, grabbing a front-seat view of the race.

“We just love to party and take part of the festivities,” Timloy said, adding that she grew up attending the race because her parents ran it. Her mother, she said, always dressed up as a hula dancer.

 Timloy said she plans to run the race next year.

The Breakers have run yearly since 1912, pausing only in 2020 and 2021 as a pandemic precaution.


posted Sunday May 21st