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The Athens Classic Marathon is an annual marathon road race held in Athensmarker, Greecemarker, 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 Marathonmarker to Athensmarker 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 Silver Label Road Race status by the IAAF.

It is perhaps one of the most difficult major marathon races: at the mid-point of the race, the course climbs from 10 kilometres above sea level to around 31 km – the greatest rise of any mass participation marathon. The course begins in the town of Marathonmarker, where it passes the tomb of the Athenian soldiers, and it traces a path near the coast through Nea Makrimarker. Following the steep rise, the course goes lightly downhill towards the city of Athens. It passes a statue of a runner (Ο Δρομέας) in the city centre before finishing up at the Panathinaiko Stadiummarker; a site for athletics competitions in ancient times and the finishing point for the 1896 Olympic marathon.

In 1982, the organisers dedicated the race to Gregoris Lambrakis, an athlete and Member of the Greek Parliament, whose murder in the 1960s has become an inspirational cause for advocates of human rights. Since 2007 the Association of International Marathons and Distance Races has organised an annual International Marathon Symposium in Marathon town the day prior to the race. Building on the tradition Olympic Torch, the race features the Marathon Flame, which is lit at the Tomb of the Battle of Marathon and carried to the stadium in Marathon before the beginning of each race.

Greek competitors have traditionally been strong in the men's and women's competitions. However, East Africans and Japanesemarker runners have increasingly become the dominant runners from 1999 onwards. Since 1990, the Athens Classic Marathon has often served as the Greek national championships for the marathon event.

Past winners

Key:

Year Men's winner Time
(h:m:s)
Women's winner Time
(h:m:s)
2009 2:13:44 2:39:56
2008 2:12:42 2:36:58
2007 2:14:40 2:33:19
2006 2:17:46 2:40:45
2005 2:16:15 2:38:39
2004 2:15:28 2:41:11
2003 2:16:59 2:43:18
2002 2:18:20 2:37:29
2001 2:19:26 2:36:15
2000 2:20:50 2:53:00
1999 2:18:35 2:46:46
1998 2:18:38 2:50:52
1997 2:31:47 2:54:43
1996 2:33:15 2:56:42
1995 2:27:27 2:59:45
1994 2:27:27 3:21:32
1993 2:28:12 3:15:56
1992 2:31:15 3:05:24
1991 2:28:18 2:59:29
1990 2:26:33 2:59:15
1989 2:23:19 2:37:42
1988 2:17:33 2:50:59
1987 2:25:14 2:43:37
1986 2:27:22 3:06:58
1985 2:26:20 3:04:30
1984 2:28:53 2:58:30
1983 2:25:34 3:20:33
1982 2:27:29 3:07:41
1981 2:32:50 3:16:00
1980 2:34:32 3:17:07
1979 2:31:21 3:34:21
1978 2:27:22 ? ?
1977 2:14:40.8 ? ?
1976 2:33:50 3:35:45
1975 2:35:39 3:16:13
1974 2:29:31 3:55:56
1973 ? ? ? ?
1972 ? ? ? ?


Statistics

Winners by country

Country Men's race Women's race Total
12 7 19
8 0 8
1 6 7
1 5 6
0 3 3
1 2 3
0 3 3
1 2 3
2 0 2
1 1 2
2 0 2
1 1 2
1 1 2
1 0 1
1 0 1
1 0 1
0 1 1
0 1 1
0 1 1
1 0 1


Multiple winners

Athlete Country Wins Years
Teofanis Tsimingatos 2 1974, 1975
Christos Dumas 2 1992, 1994
Nikolaos Polias 4 1993, 1995, 1998, 2000
Panagiota Petropoulou 2 1993, 1996
Sonja Oberem 2 2001, 2002


Notes

  • A separate race from the town of Marathon to Athens was regularly held in April between 1955 and 1997. This unrelated race, known as the Athens Marathon, frequently served as the Greek championship race but it is now discontinued.


References

General


Specific
  1. Race Info. Athens Classic Marathon. Retrieved on 2009-11-08.
  2. Michalis Nikitaridis and Jörg Wenig (2007-11-04). Race records fall in Athens Marathon. IAAF. Retrieved on 2009-11-08.
  3. Panagopoulos, Kostas (2009). Editorial. Athens Classic Marathon. Retrieved on 2009-11-08.
  4. Wenig, Jorg (2008-11-10). 2,500 years anniversary of the genesis of the marathon approaches. IAAF. Retrieved on 2009-11-08.
  5. Kendal's own Athen's marathon winner. Westland Moore Gazette (2004-08-24). Retrieved on 2009-11-08.
  6. Nikitaridis, Michalis (2007-11-02). Athens Classic Marathon celebrates 25th anniversary – PREVIEW. IAAF. Retrieved on 2009-11-08.
  7. Butcher, Pat (2008-11-09). Athens Marathon record broken by nearly two minutes. IAAF. Retrieved on 2009-11-08.
  8. Butcher, Pat (2009-11-08). Ngetich, Ozaki prevail in ‘Battle of Marathon’ – Athens Marathon report. IAAF. Retrieved on 2009-11-08.
  9. Nikitaridis, Michalis (2006-11-05). Tarus and Ogushi secure Athens Classic Marathon victories. IAAF. Retrieved on 2009-11-08.
  10. Butcher, Pat (2008-11-06). Marathon talks, in Marathon. IAAF. Retrieved on 2009-11-08.
  11. Nikitaridis, Michalis (2005-11-06). Saina and Measo are victorious in the Athens Marathon. IAAF. Retrieved on 2009-11-08.
  12. National Marathon Champions for Greece. Association of Road Racing Statisticians (2008-12-21). Retrieved on 2009-11-08.
  13. Athens Marathon. Association of Road Racing Statisticians (2008-08-18). Retrieved on 2009-11-08.


External links




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