Weather doesn’t dampen annual Crazylegs

Weather doesn’t dampen annual Crazylegs

Despite the cool and wet weather Saturday morning, a Madison tradition continued to draw thousands of runners and walkers from across the state and beyond.

The 31st Annual Crazylegs Classic is a runners’ favorite largely for its unique path that takes participants from the Capitol Square, through the UW-Madison campus, and ending at Camp Randall’s 50-yard line.

It would take more than Saturday’s lousy weather to dampen the spirits of those who turned out, especially for those who were experiencing the run for the first time, like Joe Maglio of Verona.

Maglio and his cousins Morgan and TJ were some of the 19, 819 runners and walkers who laced up their sneakers to run in Crazylegs, an event that raises money for UW athletics.

“I run 5ks and I wanted to step it up a little,” said Maglio. “So that’s why I did Crazylegs. And the finish in the stadium was cool too.”

“We were a little cold at the beginning,” added Morgan Maglio, “but as soon as we got running we warmed up right away. It turned out to be okay.”

Jim Bradley, longtime Crazylegs director, said rain may be to blame for fewer folks registering on the day of the race.

But 2012 marked the race’s second highest participation on record.

“We had about 20,500 two years ago,” said Bradley. “We were hoping to break 20,000 this year, but with the weather we had this morning, the walk up was a little slower than usual.”

But like the participants, Bradley refused to let the elements spoil the fun.

“It’s always a great day to be a Badger, rain or shine,” said Bradley.

Bradley also makes sure to thank the more than 300 volunteers and all of the spectators that came to cheer the runners on. He said the event wouldn’t be possible without them.

Those spectators included Stacey and Annika from Middleton. For them, Crazylegs is a family affair.

VIDEO: Weather doesn’t dampen Crazylegs

“We’ve got a lot of family in the race today,” said Stacey. “We’ve got daddy, we’ve got Uncle Tim, Uncle Eric, and cousin Samantha. Uncle Eric and cousin Samantha came from San Diego to run the race.”

Joe said his family will be back next year, but he jokingly said his cousins may need to step their game up before next year’s run.

One participant who doesn’t need to step up his game is WISC-TV’s sports director Jay Wilson.

Jay was the master of ceremonies and was at the finish line to congratulate all of the runners as they crossed the 50-yard line at Camp Randall.