The 36th Athens Marathon 2018 saw a record-breaking 55,000 runners taking part in this historic race, covering the 42km from Marathon to Athens’ Panathenaic Stadium.
The golden standard for all long-distance runners, the authentic Athens Marathon has given its name to all other 42km footraces across the globe. Marking the legendary feat of 5th Century BC Greek solder Pheidippides, who ran the distance from Marathon to Athens to announce the Athenian victory over the Persians, the race is now held throughout the world.
Starting in the centre or Marathon town, the race follows the coastline, passing by the Marathon tomb and coastal resorts of Nea Makri and Rafina. Turning west at Spata, the route follows a pass through Penteli Mountain, before emerging onto the plain of Pallini, with the city of Athens visible in the near distance. Upon entering the city, the runners head into the stunning Panathenaic Stadium, the only stadium in the world built entirely of marble, for a glittering finish surrounded by family and friends!
This years’ race saw a record number of participants flying in from 106 countries, including mens’ winner Brimin Misoi of Kenya, who completed the course in the third fastest ever time. The marathon also includes side events, including 10km and 5km road races, suitable for novices and younger runners.
Due to the wildfires in Mati earlier this year, organisers have initiated a project “Runners’ Forest”, which encourages participants to buy and plant trees along the 4km of the course that runs through the town. The marathon will continue to pass through Mati in order to raise international awareness and begin a revival of the affected area.
Greece Sotheby’s International Realty CEO Savvas Savvaidis commented on Athens’ strength as “a European capital that both embraces sports culture as an integral part of its history and heritage, and has the infrastructure and capabilities to host modern-day international sporting events of a world-class calibre”.
Sporting aficionados from around the globe are invited to incorporate Greece into their 2019 calendar, starting with the 37th Authentic Athens Marathon (10 November) as well as a number of showstopper events across Greece, such as the 3rd Messinia Pro-Am at Costa Navarino (20-23 February), the Spetses Classic Yacht Regatta (28-30 June), the Ironman 70.3 Competition in Costa Navarino (14 April) and the XTERRA Greece Championship in Vouliagmeni (21 April).
For more information on the Athens Marathon & Runners’ Forest initiative, visit www.athensauthenticmarathon.gr