Press Conference 20 September 2021 (Greek)

Press Conference 20 September 2021 (Greek)

Everything is ready for the "39th SPARTATHLON 2021"

The biggest sport event in the world of long distance, the 39th Spartathlon, will start at 7.00 on the morning of Friday, September 24, 2021, from the base of the Holy Rock of the Acropolis of Athens. Runners from 53 countries from all over the world, will travel the distance from Athens to Sparta, passing through archeological sites, roads and paths of Attica and Peloponnese, crossing the top of Mount Artemisio, the plains of Nemea, bridge of Evrotas. They will spread the message of good fight through this historic event.

This year's event of the 39th Spartathlon is also characterized by the presence of 60 Greek Athletes from the field of long distance.
The race takes place on the steps of the Ancient calendar Pheidippides, which covered the long journey of 246 km, arriving in Sparta the next day. The stage of the multi-month preparation of the athletes is characterized by intensive multi-month training and by corresponding psychological preparation.
With them, supporters in their trial, hundreds of volunteers, escorts, doctors, physiotherapists. Crowds from the start, the intermediate Municipalities until the end will give them full material and psychological support.

The Stavros Niarchos Foundation (SNF) is the Lead Donor of the SPARTATHLON race.

This years race is under the auspices of the Hellenic Ministry of National Defense and the Ministry of Tourism.

The International Federation of Long Distance Runners (I.A.U.) has awarded the SPARTATHLON Association with the GOLDEN quality label "Golden Label".


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Described as the world's most grueling race, the Spartathlon runs over rough tracks and muddy paths (often it rains during the race), crosses vineyards and olive groves, climbs steep hillsides and, most challenging of all, takes the runners on the 1,200 meter ascent and descent of Mount Parthenio in the dead of night.
This is the mountain, covered with rocks and bushes, on which it is said Pheidippides met the god Pan.

Spartathlon is the event that brings this deed to attention today by drawing a legend out of the depths of history. The idea for its creation is belongs to John Foden, a British RAF Wing Commander. As a lover of Greece and student of ancient Greek history, Foden stopped his reading of Herodotus' narration regarding Pheidippides, puzzled and wondering if a modern man could cover the distance from Athens to Sparta, i.e. 250 kms, within 36 hours.