The Trinidad Alfonso Valencia Marathon 2015, a great success in an outstanding year
The Trinidad Alfonso Valencia Marathon, in its 35th edition, consolidated its position as one of the best long distance running races in the world. Runners, spectators, visitors and journalists were left in doubt as to the level of quality and the potential to grow even more. The finishing times of the elite runners, the amount of international runners, the noise levels and numbers of the crowd and the world class organization make Valencia La Ciudad Del Running.
So, before we all get our party gear on and celebrate New Year, let’s have a look back at the Marathon in 2015.
FAMILY OF ELITE SPORTING INSTITUTIONS OF VALENCIA
The Trinidad Alfonso Valencia Marathon officially consolidated its links with the elite sports clubs of Valencia this year. An agreement was made with Valencia FC, Valencia Basketball, Levante FC and Vilarreal to work together to promote the marathon and healthy lifestyles. The agreement was signed in an official act in The oceanographic and City of Arts and Sciences.
OFFICIAL LAUNCH OF THE 35TH TRINIDAD ALFONSO VALENCIA MARATHON
On the 10th of November the plans for the marathon and supporting events were unveiled at the Hemesferic building of the City of Arts and Sciences. More than 100 VIPs attended the event that was presided by Elena Tejedor, Sporting President of the Trinidad Alfonso Foundation and Paco Borao, President of SD Correcaminos.
OPENING OF EXPO DEPORTE VALENCIA TRINIDAD ALFONSO RUNNERS FAIR
The weekend long runners fair opened on Friday the 10th of November at 10:00. The Friday morning opening marks the official start of all the events that support and surround the marathon. The event was officially opened by Valencia’s Fallera Mayor, Alicia Moreno Morales and all the other Falleras from the city. The Falleras visited the stands and helped out by giving out race bags and numbers to the runners who had come to collect them. The Falleras and VIPs also met the elite runners and had a quick tour of the starting line and finishing area on the lake.
VISIT TO RIVER GARDEN 5K“JARDÍ DEL TURIA”
The elite runners were taken to visit the newly opened dedicated 5K track that has been installed in the city center river park. The 5k track has a professional running surface, lighting, outdoor gyms and water fountains. In Valencia, there really is no excuse not to go running!
ELITE ATHLETE PRESS CONFERENCE FOR 35TH TRINIDAD ALFONSO VALENCIA MARATHON
After touring the city and trying out the 5k track, the elite runners gave a press conference at the City of Arts and Sciences in the main hall. All the runners who would take part in the race on Sunday were present. Paco Borao and Rashid Ben Meziane presented the event along with John Nzau Mwangangi and Sabrina Mockenhaupt.
PRESENTATION TO SPONSORS AND SUPPORTERS
The Trinidad Alfonso Valencia Marathon, as the biggest sporting event in the calendar, brought together all the race organizers and race supporters at the Reina Sofia Palace for a gala evening of thanks and celebration for the race on the 13th of November. Present were; Joan Ribó, Valencia President, Paco Borao, President of SD Correcaminos, and Joan Roig, president of the Trinidad Alfonso Foundation. The elite athletes and many other vital actors were present at the event.
EXPO DEPORTE VALENCIA
The Trinidad Alfonso Valencia Marathon managed the Expo Deporte that ran for the weekend of the marathon. The Expo Deporte is the heart of the marathon weekend, a place for runners to congregate, shop and find out about all the supporting events of the marathon weekend. There were more than 100 stands at the expo deporte, selling everything from the latest sporting gear to medical treatments.
MINI MARATHON VALENCIA MAPFRE
The mini marathon, sponsored by Mapfre, was held on Saturday the 14th, one day before the marathon. Youngsters could sign up for the race and feel a bit of what its like to run a marathon. For the younger ages, the ‘race’ was non-competitive and aimed more at increasing healthy lifestyles and awareness of sports. The course was in and around the city of arts and sciences, a marvelous backdrop to so some sport. More than 700 youngsters between the ages of 4 and 17 participated on the event.
The Trinidad Alfonso Valencia Marathon is very inclusive, one of the main tenets of the event is to increase participation in sports in all parts of society. On the weekend of the marathon there are many events for children and family ranging from workshops, roadshows and competitive events. The Mapfre road-safety roadshow organized the mini-olympics, where hundreds of youngsters had fun while doing some exercise.
The Paella Party, apart from the Expo Deporte, is the big social event of the marathon weekend. Every runner gets a free invite in their runner’s bag that they receive on registration. Over 15,000 runners and companions came to the event to eat the traditional specialty of Valencia. Paella is the perfect meal to fuel up on the day before the race.
Impuls-a València: Olympic Experiences is the part of the marathon that shows the culture of running. This year the theme of ‘Olympic Experiences’ was chosen. The event culminated in the premiere of the film “Olympic Lives” that followed Spanish Olympic hopefuls over 12 months as they sacrificed and sweated to be included in the Spanish squad for Rio 2016. In the film the hopefuls are mentored by ex-Olympic champions that were also present at the Impuls-a València event; Fermín Cacho, Miki Oca, María Vasco, Teresa Perales o Miriam Blasco, and a speech from Santiago Grisolía. The event is organized by The Trinidad Alfonso Foundation and CIDIDA.
Valencia has large and numerous social groups called ‘Fallas’. If you are a male member you are a ‘fallero’, if you are a woman, you are a ‘Fallera’. These local social groups are a key part of the Valencia Marathon, they bring large numbers of spectators and music to the marathon, and, in recent years, competition has grown between the groups to see who has the fastest runners! More than 170 falleros and falleras ran in the race this year.
Marathons are now expected to be much more than a race. Valencia, as have many events, turned the volume up to 11 and throughout the weekend you can boogie on down to various stages that have live music and DJs. At the Expo Deporte over 60,000 visitors rocked out to the 9 live bands that played there over the weekend.
Now with the advent of smart phones and cheap professional level cameras, The Trinidad Alfonso Valencia Marathon has turned to its citizen Journalists to help document the race and the supporting events. The Photo marathon is a competition where amateur snappers can enter their photos that capture the essence of the Valencia Marathon. Out of the thousands of entries, 30 were chosen that best represented the determination, fun and ecstasy of the race and the city.
The Trinidad Alfonso Valencia Marathon and Coca Cola teamed up to make sure that runners would be able to eat healthily over the marathon weekend. Over the weekend it was very easy to find restaurants who had signed up to the balanced meal program. Special branding was installed in the restaurants and specially designed menus were drawn up by the chefs. This initiative was a huge success and will be expanded in the next edition.
RECYCLE YOUR EFFORT
Whilst running the race, the runners were definitely not short of places to throw away their drinks containers. Over 50,000 containers were taken to then be recycled. The containers were bright and colorful and strategically placed around the course and especially in the 100-200 meters after each refreshment point.
VALENCIA SHOPPING RUN
The association of businesses and traders of the historic city center offered discounts, promotions and competitions to runners in the week leading up to the race. Shops and businesses took on the challenge to see who could decorate their shop windows in the most sporty way possible. More than 20,000 runners and their companions visited the old town shops to enjoy this special shopping atmosphere. Valencia shopping run was a resounding success and is sure to be expanded in 2016.
The day before the big event, Saturday 14th November, hundreds of runners came together for one last training session. The Breakfast Run had long been an informal event, now with the installation of the dedicated 5K track in the City Center River Park, the event has exploded in popularity. Many local food producers and sponsors took advantage of the event to give tasty snacks to the runners at the end of the light 5k run.
Expo Deporte Valencia and the Kitezone surf school where back once again this year to give free paddle surf classes (SUP) on the lake in the City of Arts and Sciences. Any attendee to the Expo Deporte could sign up to get a free class on this growing new sport that is great for your abs and glutes!
Stand Up Paddle (SUP) is a great non-aggressive way to exercise that can be integrated with Pilates and yoga. The school gave free group classes to the smiling faces of hundreds of eager and intrigued runners.
The Trinidad Alfonso Valencia Marathon has something for everyone, if you don’t fancy the full marathon there is also a parallel 10K that starts at the same time as the full marathon. If you don’t fancy running at all you can still come and enjoy all of the events in and around the Expo Deporte, who knows, maybe it will motivate you to do the 10K or full marathon!
2015 was an amazing year for running in Valencia and it can only get better. Happy New Year from the Ciudad Del Running and the Trinidad Alfonso Valencia Marathon.