Verona Marathon15 - 50 €
- Multi event with many options
- Not difficult to reach
- Budget customization with many optionspossible
- Nice medal 🙂
- Poor participation from crowd
- Very little music support
- Course a bit boring in the central part
|Year of 1st edition:||2011 (42K)|
|World Athletics Label Road Race:||No|
|Distances||42K, 21K, 10K|
|Type of race:||Flat, city run|
|Time limit||6 hours (42K), 3 hours (21K)|
Italy is a country famous for its art, food, wine, history… but not many know how interesting is the amount of running events organized in my country. A list offering many options for who wants to combine the enjoyment of the elements listed above, with the sense of accomplishment of crossing a finish line.
Oddly enough, I participated to my first running event in Italy only this year. I did not stop with one, but I booked three: Napoli in February and Bari in October, before Verona in November. The pragmatic reason for this sudden interest into running in Italy? It is compulsory to have a medical certificate (valid one year attesting to be fit for athletic activity), and a membership card for athletics to run in Italy.
The membership can be done online, at a cost of about 15 € (valid one year), while the medical certificate has a variable cost, around 50 €. For foreigners, italian athletic federation (FIDAL). The federation has loosen the medical requirements for foreigners to participate to events: running in Italy is now easier and less bureaucratic, coming from abroad.
But let’s go back to running in Verona, the city of Romeo and Juliet!
You can reach this very beautiful location by at least three nearby airports: Verona (small, but close), Venice and Bergamo (about 1h away). I chose Bergamo, as it is a bigger hub with many low cost options, well connected with Flixbus buses to Verona city center.
Verona Marathon is a multi event race including a Marathon, Half Marathon and a 10K event. The three event occur at the same time (Sunday morning). The total amount of participants counts about 7000 runners, equally distributed between 42K and 21K. Other 1000 runners participate to the 10K race.
The rate of foreigners is increasing and, at the moment, they are about 30% of the total.
The booking process
The booking process is easy, as instructions are clear to be followed on the event website. In few clicks I was through having what I wanted. I used the Italian section of the website, so could not evaluate the international customer experience.
The graphics of the website was already clear and good to walk through the process.
Expo and organization
The Expo is distant from the start/finish area, near the city football stadium “Bentegodi”. Verona is not a big city, and it is possible to get there walking for about 30 minutes from the city center.
The BIB pick up operations went smoothly: no lines to get what needed, also because of the large number of volunteers. The stands promoting other events were certainly outnumbering the ones selling sport stuff.
Please note, for the 42K and 21K is not foreseen an event T-shirt (but you get a beautiful backpack instead of a simple plastic bag). At the expo you will be able to buy an event running tee at a fair price.
The opposite for the runners of the 10K, that will get the running T-shirt and not a backpack. Also, there are finisher medals for the 42K and 21K, but not for the 10K.
The 21K course develops from the city center (start and arrival nearby the beautiful Arena di Verona) alongside the Adige river until the nearby town Parona, and back. The Marathon has a second round that is more interesting, as more focused in exploring Verona city. This picture shows the course in detail.
I found the Half Marathon course a bit boring: most of the first half alongside the river, with a beautiful although fixed landscape. The second half even worse, on connecting streets with not much enjoyment for the eyes.
As understandable, the 10K remains more anchored to Verona city center. You can find the 10K course info here.
The amount of refreshment stations is regular and well organized along the way. Even better the one after arrival, with cakes (home made), fruit bites, hot tea, juices and more.
The medal was very beautiful, representing the rose window of San Zeno Church. The organization aims to produce medals anchored to the artistic tradition of Verona. This year, the result was compelling.
I cannot say this event is the best I have been participating. But think of the multi-event options, the beauty of Verona and Veneto region. It is the land of Amarone wine, and other food and artistic excellencies. In other words, I am sure you will find many reasons to be part of this event!