Fabulous potential- poor organisation (about: 2014)|
Michael Ingram from Radlett Herts UK (3/1/14)
11-50 previous marathons
| 1 Tel Aviv Marathon
Truly magnificent moment at 10 km on a gentle beachfront descent with the Mediterranean a glorious blue under sunny skies and the ancient city of Jaffa another 10km ahead of us.
This marathon could be superb; flat and fast with enormously wide well laid out streets and a city that comes to a complete halt to allow runners to have their day.
A start brilliantly accessible by rail and over 10 km of stunning shoreline this is a wonderful sensual experience in the bright but mild February sun.
The problems then:-
Firstly the expo is shut the day before the race so international entrants are deprived of it - why? Who knows?
Secondly the marshalling. After running 40 Km the last thing you want is to get lost and finding yourself sharing a pavement with pedestrians and cyclists uncertain where to go is a pain beyond description and a terrible indictment of the organisers. Intense irritation for the want of a few hundred meters of red tape to demarcate the course.
The third is sharing. 3,000 marathon runners were sharing a lot of the course with the other 27,000 ( yes it was a magnificent sea of bright green vested running humanity) half marathon and 10 km runners and when you get to the last part of the course tripping over or pushing through the sedate tail of the shorter distances can be very frustrating.
The enormous numbers mean there is a great atmosphere and whilst spectators can be thin on the ground that it probably because everyone is running.
Water is a mixture of cups and bottles ( if the former is for environmental reasons why give bottles just as we giver over the river bridge so they an all fall in and pollute?) good gel and fruit supply though isotonic is always in cups.
Finish is a bit tame but you are glad that you have , at least, found it amongst the crowds.
Good Running shirt and really good medal
With the enthusiasm that exists this could be huge- it just needs much better planning , organisation but above all marshalling