Runners from all over the world are warming up as Florence Marathon returns for its 31st edition on November 30. The second-largest marathon in Italy after that hosted by Rome and considered amongst the world’s top 20, numbers are expected to exceed last year’s 11,300 participants.
The starting gun fires at 9:15 a.m. at Lungarno Pecori Giraldi, initiating a 42-kilometer race that guides participants through Florence’s surrounding hillsides, Piazza del Duomo, Piazza della Signoria and Ponte Vecchio before the winner cuts the ribbon at Piazza Santa Croce. Runners must cross the halfway point in three hours and complete the course in six, which is timed by electronic chips attached to each participant.
The 2014 edition includes the Ginky Family Run, a two-kilometer route designed especially for children, which takes place at 9:30 a.m. in Piazza Santa Croce. It was created to invite young people into the marathon, and saw 2500 participants in 2013. Registration is free for children under 14 years of age.
Events associated with the marathon include the Florence Marathon Expo, which provides a fundamental reference and meeting point for runners inside the Luigi Ridolfi athletic stadium, where sporting, tourism and entertainment initiatives are on display. After the race, marathon organizers host a party featuring a Tuscan menu, music, entertainment and dancing to celebrate the runners’ achievement.
Enrollment costs €70 (€35 for disabled athletes) and can be done by mail, fax or online at www.firenzemarathon.it before November 15.