17 December 2012, 1pm
Maratón Donostia - San Sebastián
Sun 25 November 2012
Among the town’s specialist offerings is the Marathon. The DKV San Sebastian Marathon is one of the fastest in the world. Just come to San Sebastian and let your imagination float, let your five senses run free, and let your legs fly.
Back on 15 October 1978 San Sebastian held its first marathon. It was a great success with 2600 participants, a number that would only be surpassed in 1993. Local newspapers at the time spoke about 10,000 people watching the start and more than 60,000 people lining the course.
In October 1993 San Sebastian hosted the IAAF World Marathon Cup; it was its most international edition and it was the first time transponders were used for time keeping. The race was won by the British runner Richard Nerurkar in 2:10:03.
The 2012 race was the 35th – this year the 36th edition will be held on 24 November 2013. The course is practically flat, at sea level, and passes through some of the most attractive parts of the town, such as the bay and the famous Concha Beach. This is why it has been attracting more and more runners every year. The streets are full of people cheering and clapping and giving the runners that extra encouragement to make it to the finish line.
It is a marathon both for elite runners and amateur runners. The course records are a good indication of how fast a course it is: Ana Isabel Alonso’s women’s record is 2:26:51, and the men’s record stands at 2:09:39. There is a time limit of five hours so runners aiming at a pace of 7min/km will find themselves comfortably accommodated..
Some telling statistics testify to the favourable nature of the course:
• 75% of runners improved their personal best
• 17% of runners finished in under three hours
• 56% of runners finished in under three and a half hours
• 88% of runners finished in under four hours
The spectacular finish line is located inside the Anoeta Stadium, home of the local football team Real Sociedad. Video cameras are located at five different places along the route and participants can download clips of themselves passing the different points.
There is also a10km race alongside the Marathon, using part of the same course, with a one-hour time limit. Registrations for both races will be open from April at www.maratondonostia.com
November is low season so plane tickets are usually quite reasonable. The town has good transport service and connections. There are five airports, three of them international, within 100km, and the nearest is only 20 minutes’ drive away. All of the airports offer connections with Spain’s main cities such as Madrid and Barcelona. Trains also run to Spain’s main cities and to international destinations such as Paris and Lisbon.
The organization offers some hotels through its travel agency. The official race hotel is Silken Amara Plaza, just 300m away from Anoeta Area, where the start and finish line are located.