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Here at Sports Tours International we love marathon running and we are very proud to have acquired 45 years of experience of taking runners all over the world to participate in some of the world’s best marathon events. Sometimes members of our team like to get their trainers on and experience one of the world’s best marathons for themselves. This blog focuses on one of our very own, Simon, who got his running kit on and ran the 2018 Schneider Electric Marathon de Paris.
” I stayed in the 4* Hotel Mercure which was a great hotel, set in a traditional Parisian building that had recently been refurbished in a modern style. The hotels buffet breakfast was good and the staff were very friendly and helpful.
The journey to the expo to register took about 40 minutes by metro, which included a spectacular view of the Eiffel Tower as you cross the River Seine. You could have easily spent all day at the expo if you had wanted, they had a great range of running gear, merchandise and memorabilia to try and buy.
The hotel was just a few minutes walk from the start of the marathon on Sunday morning, which meant I could leave everything in my hotel room. This was really useful as I didn’t have to queue at the bag drop. Not only did it make life easy before the marathon, it meant that it was within crawling distance of the finish!
The course itself passes some of the most popular spots in Paris – the Arc de Triomphe, the Champs-Elysées Avenue, the Louvre Museum, the Bastille, the banks of the River Seine and the Eiffel Tower. The stand out thing about this race is that the route is 26.2 miles of pure sightseeing!
Apart from the odd section of road in the two wooded sections, there were crowds lining almost all of the route, who generated a fantastic atmosphere for all of the runners. The runners were mostly local, but generally they spoke enough English for a friendly chat about the race! There were also plenty of live bands and water stations to keep you going when you needed it most.
After the race it was great to stay in Paris for a couple more days, it gave me a chance to explore even more of the city. A river cruise is a great idea for the evening after the marathon or the following day, as you get to see the city from a different point of view. If you’re like me it’s a much needed chance to put your feet up and sample as much French food and wine as possible.”
The 2018 Schneider Electric Marathon de Paris had 43,537 finishers, which makes it one of Europe’s largest marathons, Simon was one of the finishers and finished with a very solid time of 4:18:11. Simon also led the pre race briefing for our runners because it was his first time running the race, he did his homework on the course and was happy to pass this insight on to our runners at the race briefing. He went through what he had learnt in chronological order – start areas, race route, finish area etc and then covered feed stations, landmarks and any notable hills on the course. This was very well received with our runners as it gave them an extra bit of guidance to help them prepare.
The Schneider Electric Marathon de Paris is expected to have even more finishers next time round as city centre marathons are becoming increasingly popular and runners from all over the world want to experience the marathon fever.
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