This race is a MUST for any and all runners. I can't say enough how excellent the IndyMini crew does with this race. It is also Indianapolis, so no hills. From the moment that you walk into the expo to the moment you are hanging out at the post race party, you are made to feel loved and wanted, as a runner. Please check out my full video review, where I talk about how amazing this race is!! I will run this race very year.My Blog review http://bipolarfatherathletemarathoner.blogspot.com/2018/05/2018-oneamerica-500-festival-indymini.html
This was my first half marathon in 3 years. I wanted to write the review while it was still fresh in my head. I have the goal of running a race in all 50 states. My in-laws live in Indianapolis and so I decided to run the mini. I also started with a goal of 2:05 and realized during training 2:15 to 2:20 was more realistic. and realized by mile 5 finishing was the only realistic goal. I was unaware it was the biggest half marathon in the country, or that the course was so great. you had to use a seed time to get placed, or you would be placed in the 5th wave. I did not realize till a few weeks out that there was not race day packet pickup, there was also no bib mail out option. I was driving in from Chicago, and would be cutting it close to expo closing time. Luckily my in-laws were able to get my packet. I did not go to the expo but heard it was awesome. the virtual goodie bag got you discounts to many races. I used an older race time, but it somehow got me into the first wave of 5, and corral d out of z. The race started at 7:30, and according to my bib I started at 7:33. And I did start at 7:33, I was 45 seconds behind the clock. When I got to the race it was almost a mile walk from wave 5 to wave 1, I was dropped off about 2 blocks south of wave 5. I got there at 6:50 thinking I would need the time. The 5k went off at 7am, so my wave start was not set up yet. After the 5k went off the amount of 5kers that were showing up 10 to 15 minutes after the 5k started was astounding to me, what was even stranger was how they just let them start. Once my wave was set up it became very clear to me I was in the wrong wave, I was near the 1:35 pace group, I had not run an half in a very long time, I had also only ever run under 1:50 once. On the plus side I could see the elite runners and Meb was running. The race start did have great energy and the port o potties were very clean. Once the race started, I knew it was not a great day for me, Chicago had a cold spring and it was about 30 degrees warmer then what I did my long runs in. I also was committing race no-nos to me, I was running in someone else's shorts, and using products I had not tested prior to race day. However I was able to enjoy the run as much as possible for being over heated. There were so many bands and various forms of entertainment on the run, early on were bagpipes, country line dancers. SO much crowded support. I have done several Rock and Rolls and I will say with confidence that this course had more bands then the Nola, Las Vegas and Chicago Rock n Roll course. There was a pit stop every mile, and I use intervals run 6 walk 1, which turned into run 4 walk 1 because of how bad I felt, but they were so close together at some points, it seemed like I was continuously hitting them right when my run interval started adding more walking to my running. Just before Mile 6 to about Mile 8.5 you ran on the Indy 500 race track. It was such a cool experience. You ran into the tunnel and Hoosier cheerleaders were there, then once on the track there was about 1/4 mile honoring fallen soldiers. and right before mile 8 you could kiss there track. I am unsure how I was able to get down and up to kiss it but I did. My one issue was my stomach started acting up early on, and the race track I literally had no where to go, so I had to walk more to try to clam my stomach down, and because its black top I felt extremely hot. There was really nothing that could be done from the race stand point, there were bathrooms before and after the track. The run back from the track to the finish went quickly, there were even parts on the way back with sprinklers to run through. The finish had the checkered flags and a great view of the city as you ran over the bridge. The finish line was a little congested. But overall I had a great race experience, and have only good things to say about this race. And there was a party in the park. I will say I could not find a beer, but maybe I did not look hard enough. Overall for such a big race, I was impressed with the aid stations, and course entertainment and overall organization.
This was by far the biggest race ive been a part of! Very well organized! The entertainment along the course was fantastic, people cheering us on along every part of the race! The experience of running on the Indy track was unbelievable, I will for sure be doing this race again! The weather was perfect if not even a little warm, but after the winter we had i enjoyed every second!