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A Lithuanian and a Kenyan won the 28th Classic Marathon in Athens

31 October 2010 / 12:10:15  GRReporter
5673 reads

Emanuela Karastoyanova

26-year-old Raymond Bett from Kenya and 29-year-old Rasa Drazdauskaite from Lithuania are the winners of the 28th Classic Marathon in Athens. Marathon runners covered the distance of 42 km for 2,12,40 and 2,31,06 respectively. It is remarkable fact that both results are a new record in the classic marathon. The success of the gold medalists can be considered to be double as both of them appear for the first time in the discipline. Second and third place among the men took the Kenyans Kipkorir Jonathan and Kimutai Edwin with 2,14,05 and 2,15,21 respectively. From the women second place took the Russian Olga Hawthorn with 2,33,51 and the Ukrainian Svitlana Stanko with 2,38,59. The first Greek woman in the 42km discipline was Constantina Kefala.

In the marathon for 10 km Theodosis Kaldis qualified first with time 32.33. Second place took Nikos Kabitakis with 34.37 and at the third place with 34.50 is Costas Balayanis. In the same discipline among the women Poppy Astropekaki qualified first with 37.24, second with 39.16 is Theodora Kolobourda, and at the third place with 39.44 is Philippa Pavlidou.

In the 5-kilometer marathon among the men Hristoforos Merusis took first place with 15.27. Second is Konstantinos Drosos with 15.56 and third with 16.07 is Yiannis Zervakis. First between the women is Valentina Mihailova with a time of 19.42, second is Vasiliki Kolovou with 19.55, and third is Xanthippe Ravtopoulou with 20.30.

The 2500-th anniversary from the historic Battle of Marathon became the occasion why in the sporting event participated a record number of contestants. At the starting line this year stood nearly 22 thousand marathon runners. The 10-kilometer marathon attended the Prime Minister George Papandreou, the Foreign Minister Dimitris Droutsas and Environment Minister Tina Birbili. Marathon was attended by many other people of politics, culture, art and media.

 With plenty of sunshine and windless weather the track from Marathon to the Panathinaikos Stadium in Athens was completed by competitors from 88 countries from all geographical widths of the planet. Among them there were quite a few enthusiasts who had decided to honor the anniversary dressed as ... ancient Greeks.

The start was given at 09:00 o’clock. The marathon runners from all three distances finished at the old Olympic Stadium Panathinaikos in Athens, where they were awaited by excited to the extreme public and media from all around the world. The battle was great not only for the participants in the marathon, but also for the media and the photo reporters who had come to cover the memorable event. They also participated in a marathon of their own, in which success is measured, in being able to catch the most exciting moment for every competitor - the final. It was not easy. Although at an Olympic Stadium, the venue turned out to be too small to accommodate so many emotions, cameramen, photographers and journalists who came to immortalize the moment. It couldn’t go without pushing, shoving with elbows, verbal threats and menaces for a millimeter of covered frame. Law enforcement officers on the other hand "with their bare hands" were directly pushing away those who dared to come closer to the runners, seconds after the finish.

 

And the final was beautiful, exciting, elusive but also dramatic. There were many runners who just a few meters before the final collapsed. They fell before the eyes of thousands of people in the audience and before the eyes of the whole world. Their bodies, exhausted to the limit ceased to be subjected by the power of the will. Revolted organisms fell into extreme reactions that only impossible extreme effort may cause.

 

Seconds after the final GRreporter spoke with the winner in the classic Marathon, Rasa Drazdauskaite.

Are you happy with the success you have achieved?

Yes, of course. I am very happy that I managed to win the marathon. This is a great success for me.

What was the hardest thing during this marathon?

Climate conditions. For all of us runners it was very hard to run with so much sun at all times. This is exhausting.

How long have you been preparing for your participation? A year or may be more?

Much more than a year. I have been practicing running for 18 years.

Happy with her participation in the anniversary edition of the marathon is also Maria Menounos. American star of Greek origin, told GRreporter, that she feels great satisfaction from her presence at the anniversary and... also from the 5km she ran. To us, she said that also her parents did great with the task. "I feel great and I am very happy that I'm here. There is only once such 2500th anniversary and it's wonderful that we are part of it" – said further Menounos.

Athens Classic Marathon is not the largest in the world but it is most popular. The goal of each participant is to run the distance of 42 km and to reach the final. Distance that participants run is a symbolic way-struggle in which they overcome physical fatigue and demonstrate their strong will to fight. For this test they are preparing for a year and often even longer.

Tags: classical marathon in Athens Raymon Dep Rasa Drazdauskaite 2500th anniversary sport
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