MESSAGE BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE HELLENIC ATHLETICS FEDERATION

The Athens Marathon, the Authentic Marathon, is not just a sporting event, a hard race, a tough course of 42,195m. More than that, the Athens Marathon, the Authentic Marathon, is a bridge that unifies the legend with history; it showcases the strength of human will; it is a fountain of values, of social liability, environmental sensitivity, friendship and solidarity.

In 2018, we are celebrating the 36th anniversary of the Athens Marathon, the Authentic Marathon, and we hope that our strong efforts along with your presence and participation in the race will turn this year's event into a milestone for the years to come.
We are looking forward to seeing you at the Panathenaic Stadium on 11 November 2018!

Kostas Panagopoulos, SEGAS President

The Panathenaic Stadium is located on the site of an ancient stadium and for many centuries hosted games in which nude male athletes competed (gymnikoi agones) in track events, athletics championships as we would call them today. The games, which since antiquity had been held in an area far from the city, were included in the programme of the Panathenaia festival celebrations in 566/565 BC. When the orator Lykourgos assumed responsibility for the finances of Athens, in 338 BC, he included in the public works carried out in the city the building of a Stadium.

Among all the Olympic sport events, the Marathon Race stands out as it was born by a true historic and heroic event.

It was a true triumph accomplished by a news-bearing foot soldier from ancient Athens, who announced - with his last words - the victory of the Greeks against the Persians during the Marathon Battle in 490 BC.

Every 2nd Sunday of November, one of the largest sport, cultural, and tourism events is taking place in Athens: ATHENS MARATHON. THE AUTHENTIC!

More than 43.000 runners and 80.000 spectators participated in the events of "Athens Marathon. The Authentic" 2016!

SEGAS, was founded in 1897 and has been the principal organizer of many international sporting competitions held in Greece. SEGAS is putting together the “Athens Marathon. The Authentic” to be held on November 11th of the current year.

“ The Athens Marathon. The Authentic” undertook the initiative to restore the vegetation burnt almost 4.3km along the Marathon course, during the devastatingly extensive wildfires in Greece's Attica Region last summer.

At a time of such tragedy: the firefighters, rescue teams, doctors and nurses made an extraordinary and remarkable effort, in the face of an nearly impossible situation, often going beyond their own limits, same way runners do during a Marathon Race. At the same time, we witnessed a large wave of solidarity, one itself without precedent. Enormous queues were formed outside hospitals, of people wanting to offer blood; vitally important aid was quickly gathered; many have gone to volunteer their help. This solidarity acts have known no limit. 

This initiative is independent of any other reforestation program implemented by the Regional and National Public Authorities. Our initiative consists of:  

- The soil restoration, trees and bushes planting and a maintenance program for at least one year

- The installation of tanks for irrigation and forest fire protection

- The growth of an environmental awareness amongst runners, national and international community during the day of the race

- Environmental awareness programs and the installation of signage along the area of intervention

The selection of plants to be used and the intervention positions will be made in cooperation with high profile experts and the relevant authorities. 

The call to participate and support this initiative is addressed to the entire running community, our sponsors as well as the general public.

 

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