02 October 2013, 7am
Maratón de la Ciudad de México
Sun 25 August 2013
One day before the competition the City and the Olympic Stadium staged an incredible moment. The Organizing Committee brought the light of an historical flame directly from Greece: the ‘Marathon Flame’. With momentous ceremony the flame traversed the route, escorted by a burgeoning group of runners. More than 200 people relayed the flame to the Olympic Stadium.
The surprise occurred when the Flame arrived at the Olympic Stadium. Just as 45 years ago, the (former) Mexican 800m runner, Enriqueta Basilio, lit up the Olympic cauldron with the ‘Marathon Flame’.
During the opening ceremony of the Olympic Games of 1968 Enriqueta had become the first woman to light an Olympic cauldron. On 24 August, 2013, the Olympic cauldron became the first in the world to receive the Flame from Marathon, Greece.
Before sunrise on 25 August 20,000 runners reclaimed the Olympic route, and their individual goals became a reality. The start was at the ‘Hemiciclo a Benito Juarez’, in the downtown area, and the finish at the University Olympic Stadium.
The Maratón de la Ciudad de México had TV coverage around the world, in 50 countries in Latin America and the Caribbean, Asia, Europe, the United States of America, and within Mexico.
The streets of the capital were open to runners of all ages, groups and categories. Maratón de la Ciudad de México is an inclusive race accommodating wheelchair competitors as well as blind athletes. There were three additional events: a race for toddlers and teens; another for families (both were held on the track of the Olympic Stadium), and the ‘Happiness Race’ at the “Hemiciclo a Benito Juárez” for children with disabilities.
The 31st edition of the Marathon was enhanced by participation of runners from the Rarámuri indigenous people, an ancient culture from the Northern part of the country, well known for their tradition of running over long distances.
The 2013 Maratón de la Ciudad de México became an Olympic holiday that allowed runners and citizens to revisit the most emblematic and beautiful sites of Mexico City, such as: “El Ángel de la Independencia”, the National Anthropology Museum, the Soumaya Museum, the Chapultepec Castle and many others. With similar reasoning, the Secretary of Tourism of Mexico City created the “Hospitality Route”, linking more than 25 hotels and 300 restaurants which offered special rates for those attending the Marathon, the biggest sports event hosted by the City.
To commemorate the 45th Anniversary of hosting the 1968 Olympic Games, Maratón de la Ciudad de México introduced “collectible” medals. Starting from 2013 the medal will take the form of a letter, which by the 36th edition will spell out the word ‘MEXICO’. In 2013 runners will be awarded the letter “M’’. In 2014 “E” will be given; in 2015, ‘X’; in 2016, ‘I’, and in 2017, ‘C’. Finally, in the 36th edition to be held in 2018 ‘O’ will be conferred. The typography used for the Olympic Games of 1968 is the basis for the overall design.
Road to Boston
Maratón de la Ciudad de México has officially been designated as a Boston Qualifier event. Runners will be able to use their times run on the Mexico City course to apply for entry to the world’s oldest Marathon, which celebrates its 118th edition in 2014.
In 2014 Maratón de la Ciudad de México will present a sustainable edition, to raise awareness of the importance of having an environmentally friendly race. Runners, organizers, and friends of the event will be able to collaborate towards the outcome of a “green” competition.