So Brisbane, Australia was another destination conquered on my quest to run the world. The Brisbane Marathon Festival was not just any destination, but it marked country # 27 of my goal to run races in 50 countries by my 50th birthday, and…CONTINENT #6!!!!
Running races on all 7 continents has never been my goal, particularly since that would mean Antarctica, and Antarctica means cold, and I don’t do cold, but, I mean, since I’ve already got 6 continents in the bag…
But enough about that; let’s get back to Brisbane.
Brisbane is the capital of the Australian state of Queensland and the third most populous city in Australia. The first Brisbane Marathon Festival took place in 1992 and is now one of the oldest events in Queensland. Approximately 4500 people from every state in Australia and more than 35 countries participated in the celebrated event, which, in addition to the marathon includes a half marathon, 10km, 5km, and a children’s 1km “mini-marathon”.
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The race had a staggered start beginning at 6:00 am for the marathon and half-marathon participants, and the mostly flat course took us along the Brisbane River as the sun was rising, through the city, back by the water and past the Brisbane Eye (Ferris wheel) and the colorful Brisbane letters. The route was the same for the half and full marathon, with marathoners doing the lap twice.
The course, which went across several bridges and past numerous landmarks, was quite scenic. I really regretted not allotting more time to spend in Brisbane. I literally ran through the city, staying less than 24-hours – long enough to pick up my race packet, sleep, run, shower, and get to the airport to go to the next destination. As I mentioned, the race began at 6 am, which means it was dark, so there were very few spectators for at least the first 10km. However, by the time we got near the Brisbane Eye, the city was awake and the crowds were out cheering us on.
Though it was winter in Australia, Brisbane has a subtropical climate, and it felt, if not like the summer August weather I’m used to, pretty warm. The sleeves and jacket I wore to stave off the early morning chill were quickly discarded, and I was comfortable in just the tank top for most of the race.
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While the Brisbane Marathon Festival may not have had a lot of bells and whistles (or maybe I just wasn’t around long enough to hear them), it was still an enjoyable race. The overall organization was good, and there was a decent swag bag, which included a running singlet and visor, and the finisher’s medal was pretty nice.
Not race-related, but about the city itself – from the little I saw Brisbane is worth more than a run through, and I regret the decision to not spend more time exploring the city.
HOW TO REGISTER
If you’re interested in participating in the Brisbane Marathon Festival in the future, get more information on the event and how to register on the Brisbane Marathon Festival website.
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