Barcelona or Madrid Marathons?

I ran Barcelona this year, really enjoyed it, logistics worked perfectly, relatively cheap, decent course, perfect weather, so I am tempted to do it again in 2020.

But I’m also wondering whether I should try Madrid instead. It would be a new one for me, which is a plus, but I’m conscious it is late April, so could be warm by then(?), and not sure if it is “better” or “worse” than Barca.

Anyone got any experience of Madrid, or perhaps done both and can compare?


  • GipfelGipfel ✭✭✭
    This is an interesting question - I may well be pondering the same for 2021 (not run either myself but do like a good Spanish race)! 

    Have a look at this thread - there's a good and detailed description of the Madrid marathon there (all sounding pretty positive). It sounds as if the weather could do anything, but, based on my limited experience of both cities, I wouldn't imagine it'd be likely to be as warm as Barcelona would be in April:
  • Madrid is well worth it if you don’t mind some undulations. I’ve run it three times as well as the half on the same day twice. I posted in more detail on the thread linked by Gipfel (Hi!) but let me know if you have any questions.

    No idea about Barcelona.
  • Thanks to you both. 

    Gipfel - checked out the thread, very interesting. Always had an eye on Valencia (although it is a bit late in the year) and hadn’t considered San Sebastián before, will do some research.

    LT - Marathon AND half on the same day - great work!!!

    I think I might stick to what I know with Barcelona, it was a fantastic event, but I’m still not totally decided. The undulations of Madrid are less attractive, but Real are playing at home that weekend so I could catch a game (I watched Barca play the night before the Barcelona marathon this year and it was fantastic - they are playing away in 2020, but nearby Espanyol are at home so I might catch their game instead).
  • WardiWardi ✭✭✭
    I haven't done Madrid but did read that it is a bit undulating in parts, also that the Expo is a bit far out from the main centre.  I've done Barca 4 times and love the stress free set up and the course.  The weather has been just about perfect every time too (sunny & 10-16 degrees) so I have given in and entered for next year again. :)

  • You also get to run past the Bernabéu as well as Athletico’s old ground, the Vicente Calderon, before it was demolished. Madrid’s a very good race and a great city for food and drink with friendly natives. Strongly recommend it.

    BTW, I meant that they have both Marathon and Half on the same day but I didn’t do them one after the other but in separate years!
  • Cheers Wardi and LT.

    Both great options, can’t really lose, maybe I’ll toss a coin!

    LT - now I understand, I thought you were running an ultra!
  • Barcelona sounds good too. They’ve changed the Expo venue in Madrid. It’s on the metro line between the airport and the city. Quite a few people stop off en route to pick up their bib en route.
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