The Vienna City Marathon is an annual marathon race over the classic distance of 42.195 km held in Vienna, Austria since 1984. The first edition was held on March 25, 1984 with a total of 794 competitors. It is Austria's largest road running event and the 2010 edition had record participation with 32,940 runners from 108 nations taking part in the day's races.
The route starts at the Vienna International Centre, traverses the Reichsbrücke and the traffic junction Praterstern on the left side of the Danube channel, then runs alongside the Ringstraße until reaching the Vienna State Opera. After crossing the left bank of the Wien river on Wienzeile to the Schönbrunn Palace, the route goes back to the Heldenplatz (via the Mariahilferstraße) where the half-marathon finishes. The full-marathon runners, however, are continuing past the Rathaus to the Alsergrund and to Friedensbrücke, crossing the Reichsbrücke once more to reach the Prater again. After having passed the Ernst-Happel-Stadion and the Lusthaus, the route leads over the Franzensbrücke to the Ringstraße where the runners reach the finish at the Heldenplatz.
The race day's events also include a marathon team relay event, a 4.2 km fun run and a half marathon. In 2011, Haile Gebrselassie ran the fastest ever time on Austrian soil for the distance. The 2012 edition saw Haile and Paula Radcliffe engage in a novel half marathon race, with Radcliffe receiving a head start 7:52 minutes (the difference between the two athletes personal bests). The Ethiopian easily won race.
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