|Half Marathon State # 09
Half Marathon #19
On Saturday, May 02, 2015, I ran the OneAmerica 500 Festival Mini-Marathon. This race, known as “The Mini” is the largest half marathon and fifth largest road race in the U.S. with near 40,000 runners. The Mini is part of the month-long 500 Festival that leads up to the Indianapolis 500.
For me, this race was the first leg of a back to back half marathon weekend. I paired this with the Cincinnati Flying Pig Half Marathon to accomplished two states in one weekend toward my 50 By 50 Challenge. Because of the back to back races, my only goal for the race was to finish in under two hours.
The weather for the race could not have been better. It was around 52 degrees at the start and increased to around 55 degrees at the finish. The humidity was around 82% with a 3-4 mph wind.
The morning started early, as our friends we stayed with were volunteering for the race. They had to be there at 6:00a, so we followed them to make sure I knew where we were going and where to park. The race start was at 7:45a for my Wave 1, Corral C.
As we walked up to the race start, there was some nice scenery in town. We parked directly across from the OneAmerica Tower (Host for The Mini) & the Capital. However, the most memorable was a monument from 9/11, and several of the beams from the World Trade Center.
We also got to see the official pace car for the Indy 500 later this month.
As I said, our friends were two of the most amazing volunteers for the race. It takes a lot of volunteers to manage 40k runners and 26 corrals. Here they are on their post, doing an outstanding job.
Thankfully I printed a pace card to help me maintain an accurate pace for the race, otherwise, I could have probably challenged my 1:45 half marathon PR. However, with another race the following day, I had to keep my pace throttled.
The race starts out with a wave of the green flag and an Indy car to lead us away.
The course started in downtown Indianapolis.
After passing the zoo, we come upon a momentous event. Mile 2 of the race was the 500th mile of the 39 year history of “The Mini”. They had a huge inflatable to celebrate the event & location.
After a couple of miles through town we come to the town of Speedway. It was an awesome little race town.
Next came the entire purpose for me signing up for this particular race. Miles 6 through 8 are inside the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. As a race car fan, it is always exciting to run on the racing surfaces. We attended the 2003 NASCAR Brickyard 400 at the Indy Motor Speedway, so it was neat to see it from a different perspective.
After you enter the track you run through some of the infield, then pop out onto the actual racing surface and make an entire lap around the track.
Now as a race fan, I know that all winners of the Indy 500 & Brickyard 400 at the Indy Motor Speedway kiss the “Yard of Bricks” at the finish line. So, I decided to take that very opportunity for myself.
After exiting the track near around Mile 9, the remaining portion of the race you work your way back through town and to the finish line.
I finished the race in a time of 1:54:58 (pace of 8:47).
The race medal was really cool. It has the front entrance to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Here is the stock picture of the medal. You can see my medal on the Indiana Race Medals Page.
Because I was attempting to do two half marathons in two days, I did not attend the expo. Our friends we stayed with were kind enough to go to the expo early, beat the crowds, and secured all of my race stuff. Along with the race bib and long sleeved tech shirt, I also got a neon colored running hat and drawstring bag. Here are a couple of the pictures my friend took of the expo.
As with all of my 50 state races, I try and find a cupcake store that is unique to that particular location. This trip was no different. We received the recommendation to try out The Flying Cupcake Bakery. They have several different locations in the Indianapolis area; however, we visited the one at 423 Massachusetts Ave. Indianapolis, IN 46204. It did not disappoint, and if you are in the Indy area, be sure to stop in. I highly recommend them.
To wrap off this recap, I cannot go without telling you about the awesome, relaxing views we had at our friend’s house. They had a creek that ran behind their house and it was so peaceful. It helped remove all the stress of the back to back half marathon & travel weekend. Thanks Dave & Sue!