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A sometimes challenging course through Portugal’s capital, illuminated by Christmas lights

Run to the rhythm of Lisbon

El Corte Inglés São Silvestre de Lisboa
Sat 29 December 2018

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This 10km race runs to the rhythm of Lisbon. Now in its 11th year the start and finish are located in the heart of the city on the magisterial Avenida da Liberdade, illuminated by Christmas lights.

The event is organised by HMS Sports and has Five-Star Certification from the European Athletics Association. More than 70,000 runners have taken part in the 10 editions held to date.

A lot of the course is flat. It joins the Tagus River and runners proceed along Cais do Sodré, Avenida 24 de Julho, Avenida Ribeira das Naus and through the imposing baroque Praça do Comércio. After seven kilometres it becomes more challenging with the steady ascent up the Avenida da Liberdade. Turning around at the Marques de Pombal monument runners have the benefit of a gradual descent towards the finish line.

Portugal’s best athletes take part in the race. Jéssica Augusto and Ana Dulce Félix, both Olympians, have won several times. Among the elite athletes there is also a men vs women event; at the moment the women lead with five wins against four.

All runners receive a technical long-sleeve t-shirt and all finishers a participation medal.

Runners are grouped at the start according to the times they have recorded in the past year. The Elite B category is defined as sub-37:30 with other categories being sub 45-minutes, sub 50-minutes, sub 60-minutes and longer than 60 minutes.

To ease the flow of runners the start is organised in three different waves. The first wave is for all those in the sub 50-minutes categories; the second wave is reserved for sub 60-minute runners and the third wave is for the 60+ minute runners. The chip time is only activated after crossing the start line so that regardless of the wave you start in your chip time will not be affected.

Pacer groups are organised so that it is easier for runners who want to achieve a certain time to pace themselves. The pacers are recruited to run at 4 mins/km (for those wanting to run sub 40-minutes or less); 4:30 mins/km; 5 mins/km; 5:30 mins/km; 6 mins/km. Animation is planned at all the kilometre points.

The event includes races for children (aged 5-13) with courses varying between 300m–1000m according to the ages of the young participants.

On 8, 15 and 22 December the organisation stages three training sessions in preparation for El Corte Inglés São Silvestre 10km. Runners meet at 10.00 at the Anfiteatro Keil do Amaral in Monsanto Park. Training lasts around 40-45 minutes and is organised according to three different pace groups so that every runner is catered for. Specialist coaches lead each group and are available to clarify any doubts, either about the race, training or the competition.

See the latest news from El Corte Inglés São Silvestre de Lisboa

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