Going to Nice to run races is
becoming a bit of a habit for me. First there was the Nice semi-marathon, then
the marathon Des Alpes-Maritimes, and most recently, Rock ‘n’ Roll Nice 10 Miles du Carnaval. It looks like running Rock ‘n’ Roll races is becoming a bit
of habit for me as well since the 10 Miles du Carnaval, added to Lisbon and
Madrid makes three.

I wrote in a previous post
that I was ready
to run again
, however, I there were no destinations in my sights that I
was trying to conquer. A few days before the Nice 10 Miles du Carnaval, I got
an email stating that online registration was closed, but that it was still
possible to register in person at the race expo. Participating in the race had not entered my mind until that moment, but I took that thought
and “ran” with it, so to speak, and promptly booked a flight and a hotel to Nice so that I could register in person for and run the 10 Miles du Carnaval.
Race bib and t-shirt

Having logged countless miles
in Nice – not only races, but simply running along the Cote d’Azur while vacationing there over the years – this was not a new destination conquered in
my quest to run the world. It was, however, the most fun I’ve had running a
race in a very long time. 
On Your Mark
The 10 Miles du Carnaval is part
of 3 weeks of carnival festivities in Nice which included a number of parades,
family activities, exhibitions and sporting events.
King of Carnaval de Nice and flower parade

So while the expo, with the sometimes accompanying pasta party is the main pre-race event for most
races, for the 10 Miles du Carnaval it was the opening festivities for the Nice Carnaval, with
it raucous music, carnival king and queen and flower
parade that served as a prelude to the race.

Get Set
Donning a costume was one way
to get set for this race. It is carnival, afterall. Since I signed up for it on a whim just days before, I didn’t have to time to do anything too
fancy. Instead, I riffled the dress
up box at home and found a wig, a mask, a boa and a tulle skirt and did my best
Tim
Gunn impersonation to “make it work”
.
A costume is a must for the Rock ‘n’ Roll Nice 10 Miles du Carnaval

In the end, I ditched boa and
replaced the wig (fearing it would be too hot to wear the entire race) and mask
(for one that was less black widow and more carnival) that I’d brought from
home, replacing them with ones I bought in Nice. Truly, nothing
fancy at all, especially when I saw some of the costumes other runners wore.

Lots of fun costumes at the Rock ‘n’ Roll Nice 10 Miles du Carnaval

There was the painting in the frame, Charlie Chaplin, and the ones who did the
rock and roll thing and dressed like The Beatles (pushing a non-runner in a
yellow submarine) and The Village People, who were the group winners for the
best costume contest. 

Group winners for the best costume contest
Photo credit: Rock ‘n’ Roll Series
Go
The course was spectacular,
as I knew it would be. We ran along the Promenade des Anglais, past the famous
Hotel Negresco while taking in views of the Baie des Anges. The other races
I’ve run in Nice have gone along this route and I never tire of it, especially
when the weather is as gorgeous as it was.
Runners pass the iconic Hotel Negresco in Nice.

At the end of the bay there was a switchback and we turned around and ran in the opposite direction, along and around the Port of Nice before making
our way back to the center of Nice and toward the finish line. But not before
encountering a hill at around the 8-mile mark. We started our descent at the
9-mile mark and came in for the finish at Place Massena.

Scenes from the Rock ‘n’ Roll Nice 10 Miles du Carnaval

As is the case with RnR
races, there were a few bands along the course.  A very few. Like, three. Two bands were located along the Baie des Anges,
and since that part of the course was the switchback, the bands in essence
played 2 sets playing at (approximately) the 1 and 2.5 mile points, and the 4.5
and 5 mile points. There was also another band at around mile 7. I was
surprised that there was no band/DJ at the finish line nor was there a post-run
concert, well not exactly. There was a charity Zumba session, but that’s not very
rock and roll, is it? Since I ran with my iPod, like I always do, I had my own soundtrack with me, so the band situation didn’t really bother me, I was just surprised by the lack of music along the course. 
Finish Line
According to my finisher’s
certificate my official time was 1:49:14
However, I’m claiming the 1:47:27 time clocked by the Nike+ Running app I used because it paused when I paused (a feature that I love, by the way), which I did often to take pictures.

And while
neither time is particularly fast, I am proud to say it is significantly faster
than I’ve run in a while, and is just one more reason why this was such a great
race in my book. That and the costume. Any race run in a costume is pretty
awesome. 

Finisher's medal from Rock ‘n’ Roll Nice 10 Miles du Carnaval
Oh, and the medal. I do love me some fab race bling.