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Race Calendar Newsletter | Week Ending 18th November 2012

Hey Runners,

The Race Reports and photos keep coming in thick and fast, and we’re constantly amazed at the lengths people go to to take fantastic photos and footage of the great races around the world. We featured the Venice Marathon last week, and this week were are very privileged to be provided with an in-depth report and astounding photos of the classic Athens Marathon from David Wise, who competed in the event himself.  There are many great marathons around the world, but as David says,

“for marathon runners who want to taste authenticity, then there is only one race that they’ve got to be a part of, and that’s the Athens Classic Marathon.”

The 30th Athens Classic Marathon:

The Athens Classic Marathon is an annual marathon road race held in Athens, Greece, normally in early November. The race usually attracts around 5000 competitors every year, although the total reaches around 8000 when including the concurrent 5 and 10 kilometres road races and the racewalking contest.

The marathon course is based on the myth from which the race gained its name: Pheidippides, a messenger in Ancient Greece, ran from the Battle of Marathon to Athens to announce the Greeks’ victory over the Persians. The provenance of the competitive race is traced back to the Marathon race at the 1896 Olympics. The Athens Classic Marathon began in 1972 as a joint venture between the Greek tourist board and athletics association. The race came under the auspices of the current organisers and SEGAS in 1983 and has since become a major race, being awarded Gold Label Road Race status by the IAAF.

Photos from Classic Athens Marathon Review:

Excerpt from the race report on by David Wise:

“Starting in the town of Marathon itself and following the original route laid out in 1896 for the first ever marathon race, the Athens Classic Marathon also follows the route run by the legendary Athenian soldier who, over 2,500 years ago, raced back from the Marathon battlefield, where the Athenian army had just won a great victory over the invading Persians, in order to let the people of Athens know that they were safe. Legend tells of him collapsing into the arms of citizens at the base of the Acropolis and gasping news of the victory before dying from exhaustion.

The organisers of the first ever modern Olympic Games, in 1896, decided to build a running event around this legend, and hence our marathon race was born…And according to sports historians, if we enjoy watching the modern Olympics, then we’re lucky it was. Without TV to link up the many events that first Olympic games, which was held at various locations around Athens, had little coherence, and the public didn’t warm to it at all. The Greek government went bankcrupt during them as well, adding to the general feeling of discontent. There was talk of this new festival of sport being a waste of money, and that there was no enthusiasm to have any more. It was going to be a one-off, this Olympic gathering…”

You can view the full report here on

Your Weekly Running Inspiration:

New York City Marathon Inspiration Video

Race Reports & Photos:

  • Race Report: Lancaster Half Marathon 2012:  The annual Lancaster half marathon was held on the 4th October and over 550 finishers enjoyed perfect autumn conditions and a flat, fast course.There was a super turnout of athletes from Lancaster & Morecambe AC; first back for the club in 23rd position was Graham Hodgson with an excellent effort of 1h.25.16. In next was Tom Hill finishing 47th with a good run of 1h.30.00, followed by Andrew Whitton running well in 1h.34.28 for 81st place…..
  • Race Report: 2012 Amalfi Coast Trail, Italy: From 13 till 20 October 2012 the Amalfi Coast Trail allowed the runners to go through a region registered on the UNESCO world heritage in 5 stages for a total of 85 km and 6000 m D +. Departures under the dome of the famous city of Amalfi or the beautiful beach of Positano, passage in the fjord of Furore, on the path of the Gods to Agerola or at the summit of the coast, the Monte San Michele, offering an amazing panorama in 360 ° on Capri, all the Amalfi Coast, the bay of Naples, the Vesuvius vulcano and the gulf of Salerno : this is a part of the program which was proposed to the runners, under the sun and the neapolitan heat……
  • Race Report: Bath Skyline 10km @ Avon, UK, 18th November 2012:  beautiful crisp morning greeted runners at the first of the Skyline 10km events of the winter. A new route for 2012 brought runners the chance to enjoy a little of every type of terrain; open fields, gravel track, woodland trail and in true Relish Running Races style; plenty of mud and some cheeky hills….
  • Ascot Park Hotel Southland Festival of Running | Sunday 11th November: Timaru’s Sam Wreford ran away with the third best time ever for the Southland Marathon today and clocked up a personal best in the process. The talented runner ran the course from Riverton to Invercargill’s Surrey Park in 2hr 16min 35sec to cap off a successful year that has also included a win in the Christchurch Marathon and a national cross country title.
  • Dirt Half Challenge | 17 November 2012: Voted the third best race in the UK for November by Runners World Readers, this year’s Dirt Half Challenge did not disappoint. A sell out months in advance once again, this ever popular event challenged runners with wetter, muddier conditions than usual this year but the rain stayed away and the sun even managed a brief appearance.  Despite the wetter conditions underfoot many runners managed a personal best and some fantastic performances were achieved.
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The team at Race Calendar hope you have an awesome running week.

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