Race Review: Madison Mini Marathon

Disclaimer: I received free entry to the Madison Mini Marathon race as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review find and write race reviews!

Finally. That should really be the title for my review of the Madison Mini Marathon. After missing out on it the previous three years for various reasons, I finally was able to run it. Although that almost didn’t happen thanks to dealing with an ongoing injury. I’m really glad I had the opportunity to run this race and visit, briefly, the city of Madison, a place I had never been to before. So, let’s get to the details!

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Expo Quality: It was OK. They had multiple vendors, but not a whole lot of them. You had options though. Available to purchase were goodr glasses, Balega socks, Saucony kicks and also many energy and fueling options too. And the race merchandise had some nice choices too, with hooded sweatshirts and t-shirts plus gear from previous years’ races. There were the updated course maps for both the half marathon and 5K distances. Also, a cool banner representing 2019 with all runners names listed on it; they also had several previous years’ banners with names hung nearby.

T-Shirt/Swag: Just a t-shirt here. But one with a nice design and one that I will actually wear. Can’t always say that about race shirts. This one has a retro look to it and I’m digging that.

Parking/Access: Parking and access for the expo was easy and I had zero problems. For the race itself I was a little disappointed and probably unprepared. I thought there would be signs showing where free parking would be (I am only assuming there was free parking) but at the very least, signs where available parking should be. I pulled into a garage just to park since it was getting late and close to the start of the race.

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Course Scenery: I loved it! Running through the city, past the capital building and also later getting to run past Camp Randall Stadium. And then the sections that had you going past the lake were wonderful; brought some cooler air onto the body that was much enjoyed with the humidity that was out there. A very enjoyable viewing course to run on.

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Elevation Difficulty: There were some hills throughout but nothing that seemed daunting… until the final hill that came after mile 12! Ha ha! And when a road is called Observatory Hill, well, it isn’t going to be subtle! That was the worst hill on the entire course. Everything else was manageable.

Aid Stations: Wow! These made the race! So many energetic groups at the aid stations cheering on runners, answering questions and just being as supportive as possible handing out water and Gatorade. It’s been quite some time since I’ve run a race that had so much energy and overall exuberance at so many aid stations along the course. The Madison Mini group did a great job choosing the groups to man the stations. Just excellent! One of the highlights of this race!

Race Management: Plenty of it! Constant informing of price increases. Timely updates concerning the course being changed due to construction not being completed along some roads. The post race party put on was fabulous! Out on the lakefront, a band rocking away, beverages flowing, people taking pics in a giant chair or along the docks. It was a picture perfect scene. A really great end to a really great race.

This is a race I am happy that I finally got to run. And I hope to run it again when not being injured and see what I can really do for a pace and finish. This is a half marathon you should think about doing though. For sure.

Feel free to leave any comments or questions about the race!!

Happy running all!

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