In 2015 we added the Clearwater 50K Ultra to provide an excellent introduction for marathon runners seeking to enter the world of ultramarathons, as well as a potential PR course for those more experienced ultra athletes.
Our runner-friendly course is entirely asphalt-paved, except for a handful of bridges and overpasses, and we offer ample course support.
It is visually varied and mostly flat, except for two 75′ bridges (mile 1 and mile 4), a 25′ bridge (mile 14), and seven 25′ overpasses. The trade-off – these high vantage points offer wonderful views of our coastal lifestyle.
For our friends up North, the 50K Ultra offers the perfect combination of a scenic course, ideal weather, and for your recovery, award-winning Clearwater Beach, featuring our area’s famous white sand and the mild waters of the Gulf of Mexico.
If you’re seeking a mid-winter break and considering an escape to the south to run an ultra, Clearwater is a great choice. C’mon down!
Our 50K Ultramarathon uses our 26.2 mile marathon course, but with a 2.4 mile out-and-back extension starting at mile 16.5 to attain the 50K distance.
Both races start at Coachman Park on Clearwater’s downtown waterfront, head through downtown to access the Clearwater Bridge, reaching the top at the 1-mile marker. It’s downhill from there along the perfectly manicured Clearwater Causeway to award-winning Clearwater Beach, heading south to the Sand Key Bridge, the top of which is at mile 4.
With a start shortly before sunrise, athletes enjoy the sunrise over Clearwater Bay, before descending onto barrier-island-flat Gulf Boulevard and into Sand Key Park to pick up some mileage, before returning to Gulf Boulevard for the next 9 miles, touring through exclusive residential and commercial gulf-front neighborhoods.
The course turns inland over Park Boulevard Bridge and takes an easterly route on rustic, tree-canopied Oakhurst Road to the Pinellas Trail, a paved, rails-to-trails linear park which spans the length of Pinellas County. At this point, mile 16.5, while the marathon runners head north, the 50K ultra course heads south on the Pinellas Trail for 2.4 miles and turns around to pick up the additional mileage needed to complete the 31-mile route.
All along the Pinellas Trail, athletes enjoy the absence of motorized vehicles before reaching Clearwater and a short trek on S. Ft. Harrison before turning west into the very exclusive Harbor Oaks neighborhood.
The course heads west on the Clearwater Bridge approach for a short jaunt, exiting off to the double-helix ramp onto the bay level and the finish line just ahead back at Coachman Park.
CONGRATULATIONS – You have finished our Clearwater 50K Ultramarathon!
The finish line will be open for 7 hours from the 7:05 a.m. start, and the course will open to traffic based upon that pace. For instance, athletes should be at the midpoint by 10:35 a.m. Athletes slower than that will need to move to the sidewalks and adhere to all pedestrian laws. Ultra athletes anticipating a finish time beyond 7 hours MUST start early at 6:35 a.m., which increases total finish time to 7.5 hours. Please visit our Walkers Page for more info on our early starts.
Ultramarathoners need to reach mile 16.5 within 4 hours of the start, a pace of 14:30, in order to run the 4.8 extension to complete the 50K mileage. Ultra athletes reaching mile 16.5 after 4 hours will not be allowed to complete the extension and will be directed to finish the 26.2 marathon.
We offer Gatorade and water at 21 aid stations starting at mile 2.8.
Fresh Florida Oranges are available starting at the mile 6 aid station.
Medical support is available from ambulances stationed along the course and at the finish line. If you need medical assistance, the ambulances will be mobile and able to respond.
Certification / Timing
The course will be accurately measured and USATF certified. We use computerized chip timing, but official results will be based on “Gun Time” as per USATF rules.
Average Low – 50°
Average High – 71°
Average Monthly rainfall – 1.99 ”
Sunrise: 7:22 a.m.
Gold running starfish medals for all 50K Ultramarathon finishers
Age Group Awards – 3 deep in standard 5 year age groups
Overall Male / Female Awards – 3 deep
Masters (40+) Male / Female Awards – 3 deep
Grandmasters (50+) Male / Female Awards – 3 deep
– Fritz C. Gottschalk #39, Fayetteville, NC