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Do you know why the current world marathon record was not set in Vienna? Well, it might be because Haile Gebrselassie chose Berlin instead. The profile of Vienna City Marathon is quite similar to that of the legendary Berlin race.
Thanks to the glorious history of Vienna as the capital of the Habsburg Empire and the Emperors wanting to design Vienna as an Imperial City, the streets are mostly broad and straight and they absorb the crowds of runners much better than in some other cities.
Though it may be windy on the bridges and in the sections close to the Danube, most of the time you will be hidden between high raising historical houses and trees. There are almost no hills or climbings along the marathon route in Vienna. The profile of the route promises a good chance of attacking your personal best.
The course record of Vienna City Marathon is held by Abel Kirui, the World Champion in marathon, who ran 2:07:38 in Vienna in 2008. The fastest woman in Vienna was the Italian Maura Viceconte in 2000 with 2:23:47.
While being fast, the route of Vienna City Marathon allows for a plenty of sightseeing if you like to. It takes you to various parts of the city and there is only very little of the best known places and monuments in Vienna that you can’t see while running the marathon.
You will discover the multiple faces of Vienna, ranging from the old Imperial Palace to the modern buildings in Vienna International Centre. You will run in front of the famous Vienna State Opera, the Prater Ferris Wheel, or the magnificent Schönbrunn Palace.
Vienna Marathon route starts at the Vienna International Centre (UNO City – metro line U1, station Kaisermühlen VIC). Runners will cross the Danube on the Reichsbrücke (the Imperial Bridge) and continue to Praterstern. Then they will run down the Ringstrasse up to the State Opera.
The race course then heads out of the city centre to the Schönbrunn Palace. After returning from Schönbrunn to Heldenplatz in front of the Imperial Palace, you will already have made the half marathon. Vienna ANKER Half Marathon finishes here.
In the second half of the full marathon you will see further Viennese monuments like the Parliament, Rathaus, or Burgtheater. You will cross the Danube on Friedensbrücke (the Bridge of Peace) and back again on Reichsbrücke. This will bring you to Prater for the second time and you will see the Austrian national football stadium of Ernst Happel in Prater, where Euro 2008 finals took place. After you have made a big circle around the heart of Vienna and seen all the landmarks over the 40 km, you will come back to the Ringstrasse and finish at Heldenplatz – the Square of the Heroes in German.
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