Race Report 2015: Andrei Nana

Race Report 2015: Andrei Nana

In 2015 I was blessed to return to the Spartathlon for the 3rd time. For me it was the greatest honor and the culmination of yet another year. I first ran Spartathlon in 2013, then returned in 2014. The exact same race, two very different experiences. In 2013 the race went well and while having some challenges as anybody else in the race, I finished well. The 2014 was a different experience as I raced with a severely injured leg. While the race lacked the “first time experience” it forced me to approach it differently and to experience the same amazing emotions at the finish line although having taken a different path....


 

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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.

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