Lorraine and Pauline Rock, Roll ‘n’ Race in Madrid

Rock ‘n’ Roll Madrid Half Marathon – Race Report – April 2016 – Lorraine Pichelski

Very early on Saturday morning Pauline and I boarded the plan to Madrid. Not sorry to be leaving a very cold London. Arrived, and made straight for the expo to collect our race numbers. Only 2 stops on the metro and we were there. Think London expo but smaller. Number collected, then a race bag with your baggage bag and other freebies in it, then your t-shirt! A quick walk around, then in to the pasta party. Large plate of pasta, fruit and drink. All included in your entry fee of 36,00€. Great value.

Then back onto the metro and off to the hotel. Sun shining and feeling like summer! (To us anyway, not sure the locals felt the same.) Got to the hotel, checked in and then set off to find the start / finish. 10mins walk and we were there.

Sunday morning, breakfast and ready for the off! As the weather forecast was for 19deg we didn’t need to take any spare clothes or use the baggage tents. A brisk walk to the start, found our pen. (Had to squeeze under the fence as the opening was on the other side, but kind Spanish man lifted it and we were in.) Start time 9.05 am and we were off!

The route was on closed roads and the roads were very wide, so 30,000 people had had plenty of space to run. We never felt that we didn’t have space to run at the pace we wanted. The first 4 to 5 miles went gently up hill and then flattened off. It is great to run and hear live bands playing and the runners clap and cheer as they pass.

The final 3 miles were around the outside of a large park. On the final turn towards the finish we were faced with a massive uphill!!! Still nearly there. Final turn into the park and we could see the finish arches. Large crowds cheering and we had made it. Medal collected, water, banana, Powerade, another goody bag and space blanket.

With so many runners it took a while to exit the area, but once we had found our supporter (Richard) we headed back to the hotel. It was nice to be able to walk back and get the lactic from our legs.

Quick change then off for some sightseeing around Madrid. All in all this was a great weekend. The race was excellent, well organised and great value for money. It is part of a series of races in Europe and North America. And as is suggests in the title Rock n Roll, music is the theme. With bling medals the prize!