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Pros and Cons

Sometimes I feel sort of guilty whether I might be to excited on running the London marathon and due to this the presentation could be missing objectivity. You should have in mind that I nearly feel home in Britain as I spent my holidays over there for 20 years now.

To help this I show the bare Pros and Cons on this page. Of course this list isn't complete without your opinion. Discuss the race in the provided forum or send extensions via mail.

 

Cons

Pros

  • the price: it is unbelievable expensive.
    For British residents it's alright:
    30 £, but as an overseas runner you pay 80 £ (is this according to EU rules?).
    British
    Charities pay 250 £.
    Overseas travel agencies have to pay even more.
    Your number is not transferable, no money back when you can't run  (at least a guaranteed place for the following year  - after paying once more!)

  • no breakfast fun run on the day before

  • no Pasta-Party (instant pasta is offered at the expo)

  • results for master classes only mentioned at online certificate and results data base, no special honours

  • no food offered on the route (but 2 stations with Lucozade Gel) and just a goodie bag containing some snacks at the finish

  • no massage offered at the finish (twice on the route)

  • certificate (a modest one) only available online for pdf-print

  • the official website has improved significantly; however, information for overseas runners are still very modest; no mail-contact offered, hotline english speaking only

  • individual online entry  only via lottery,  guaranteed places for overseas runners only when booking the whole weekend with an agency, or for British residents via charity

  • the course is not really flat, especially the red route; I measured 145 meters of height difference. And it can still get quite dense on the Isle of Dogs. The blue start is rather slow for runners from pen 4 onwards.

 

  • perfectly organized registration at the Expo (thursday to saturday) , no queues even during the rush hour at saturday afternoon

  • exhibition fits to the size of the event, high quality souvenirs by sponsor adidas, although expensive

  • big and well organised start area,
    drinks on offer,  baggage vehicles close to the start, countless toilets at the start

  • 27 big drink stations, water from Nestlé in  330ml-bottles

  • every 5 miles plenty of energy drinks, Lucozade Sport, in 330ml-bottles

  • 500 toilets on the route, Vaseline offered by members of St.-John-Ambulance 

  • spectators offering a range of food like cookies, fruit e.c.

  • attractive route: Mile 6-7 in Greenwich, close to Cutty Sark (Sailing boat), with masses of spectators; mile 12,5 Tower Bridge the main highlight; Mile 19 underpass of Canary Wharf Tower,
    on the Isle of Dogs the road gets narrower and the atmosphere can be felt; after turning right at mile 25 and Big Ben, the finish with royal surroundings is just pure enjoyment

  • completely free of traffic, the other side of the road is mostly closed while  spectators can move freely on foot, and around the finish area one gets the impression the whole part of the city is closed for traffic

  • well organised, while in parts very crowded finish area, kitbag re-handing without problems, many helpful people, who check whether you are alright

  • the main attraction of the London-Marathon are the runners themselves. Countless imaginatively costumed participants (some of them really fast running), all of them and the masses of spectators in a very good mood,
    countless Pubs along the route, most of them with live bands or at least music boxes out on the street ...

 

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following page: How to enter



(Foto: London Marathon Media Service)