We are going to cover (and run) three marathons in a row: Vienna, Copenhagen, and Luxembourg
One of the best experiences amateur runners can have is to run a race that allows them to get to know places, learn about other cultures, and connect with people worldwide. To provide information and help more Brazilians become “maratourists” (“marathon tourist runners”), taking the most out of their experience, Esportividade will be covering three marathons in Europe in April and May 2024: the Vienna City Marathon, in Austria, on April 21; the Copenhagen Marathon, in Denmark, on May 5; and the ING Night Marathon Luxembourg, on Saturday, May 11.
Andrei Spinassé, a journalist and editor at Esportividade, will run the three marathons. It will be an unprecedented challenge for him, and he wants to tell more about the three events – from registering to winning a medal – to fellow Brazilian amateur runners. Spinassé covered (and ran) the Prague International Marathon in the Czech Republic and the Mainova Frankfurt Marathon in Germany in 2023, and the coverage of the Austrian, Danish, and Luxembourg marathons will follow from his experience.
“The Brazilian media rarely cover these major events that play an important role for Brazilian ‘marathon tourist runners.’ The information available isn’t generally in Portuguese and doesn’t answer many of Brazilians’ questions about the trip, the cities, and the countries,“ says Spinassé. “Whether readers follow us or are just doing a Google search, our job is to provide information from the runner’s point of view, a participant who lives in Brazil and is traveling to run.”
When traveling, news reporter Renata Sá plays a complementary role to Spinassé’s: she participates in shorter races (she’ll run 5 kilometers in Vienna, for example) and shares her spectator’s perspective in marathons. “To make the most out of the considerable investment, many Brazilian runners run the marathon and extend their trip to get to know and enjoy the city and surroundings. This was the case with many of the Brazilian tourists we met at the Prague and Frankfurt races, and the same will probably happen at the 2024 races”, says Sá.
This is one of the characteristics of “marathon tourism”: in many cases, the marathon becomes part of a family trip. Several of Europe’s major running events, such as the Vienna City Marathon and the ING Night Marathon Luxembourg, include shorter races (not just 42.195 kilometers – 26.2 miles), allowing companions to participate.
The three marathons are pretty different from one another. The Vienna City Marathon, which began in 1984, is a classic not only because of the world capital of classical music – the city was home to Beethoven and Mozart, for example – but also because Prater Park and Hauptallee Lane, part of the course, have been hosting running events for over two centuries, since 1822. In Vienna, Kenyan Eliud Kipchoge became the first person to do a sub-two-hour marathon in 2019 (unofficial record).
The Copenhagen Marathon, first held in 1980, is also considered a fast race, and the route allows participants to see the architectural wonders of the Nordic city, considered by UNESCO the “World Capital of Architecture for 2023”. The Danish event is so popular that the 15,000 spots are sold out. Around 47% of the registered participants are foreigners, giving it a truly international profile.
As the name implies, the ING Night Marathon Luxembourg happens at night. It starts at 7 pm when it is still bright, and the night comes as the race progresses. It’s closer to Brazilians than you may think: percussionists from different parts of Europe go to the Grand Duchy, landlocked by Belgium, Germany, and France, and perform during the event, considered a “samba party.” This marathon is more about having an incredible experience than showing technical performance. The course is full of turns and narrow roads.
In all three marathons, Esportividade will have the support of the respective organizing companies, VCM Group, Sparta, and Step by Step. The Royal Danish Embassy will also support the coverage of the Copenhagen Marathon. Spinassé and Sá will prepare for the challenge in partnership with ClassPass. By March 2024, each event will be covered in more detail in a separate piece. In April and May 2024, Esportividade will have an “on-the-ground” coverage in Europe. Follow this exciting coverage here on Esportividade and social media, especially on our Instagram account, which will feature short videos.