France- Medoc Marathon, September 10th, 2005:
Touring Company: Marathon Tours-http://marathontours.com/
Le Marathon Du Medoc: http://www.marathondumedoc.com/
Our First International Marathon Together- We chose this marathon as a result of taking an online class together to learn about wine. During the class we chose to learn about wines in the Bordeaux region of France. Believe me, we were not wine connoisseurs by any means. We took the class so that we could do something together and learn how to taste and appreciate wine. At the conclusion of our class, we decided it would be great to actually visit the region that we just studied! Medoc in Bordeaux is Frances most celebrated vineyard!
I researched the web for travel itineraries in Bordeaux and came upon the Marathon du Medoc in France! I read up on the marathon and found out they only let so many runners outside of the US to participate. I was not sure where to begin in getting signed up for this, etc but then I luckily found http://marathontours.com! We signed up for the marathon immediately and decided we should probably start training!
Well, I will have to say that this was one of the BEST marathons we have ever ran together! There is no doubt that we will putting this on our list to revisit once we finish the 7 continents!
As you can see from the pictures, this was one big PARTY! Not the normal marathon! Everyone…and I mean everyone participated in very unusual ways. Everyone dressed in costumes and some runners actually created floats and pushed them the entire 26.2 miles! So what motivated them??? Of course….wine at every mile! That’s right, we had a choice of water, wine or Gatorade! The marathon path actually traveled through 59 vineyards including: Chateau Lafite Rothschild, Chateau Mouton Rothschild, Lynch-Bages, Pichon Lonqueville, Beychevelle among others.
As you can imagine the beginning of the race was very slow to start. All I remember was just laughing, looking at all the different costumes and crazy floats that runners were pushing for 26.2 miles! As you can see from the pictures we dressed up as Tarzan and Jane. We chose these costumes because they were easy to make and were modified so that we could easily run in them! (see pictures)
The race first ran through Pauillac where Pichon-Longueville provided a glass of Suduiraut. We then passed Latour and then through the gardens of Beycheville where we enjoyed the 2000. We continued on enjoying all the wine along the way including: Grand Puy Lacoste 2001, Lafite 2001, Lafitte-Carcasset 1997, Chambert-Marbuzet 1996! All I can say is thank goodness for all the wine as it became a very hot day and as you can imagine the route had a great deal of elevation throughout it!
Our book will go into more detail about our trip but one thing I wanted to share that was definitely a memory was that there were few (if any) portable toilets. Everyone was pretty much just fertilizing the vineyards along the way-including me! Later we found out that 2005 was one of the great vintages for France! We so enjoy those wines today and laugh when we are drinking them as we know that we contributed to this great year of wine!
Towards the end of the race, mile 24 I believe they were serving oysters! I am not a huge oyster fan, but one thing that we do together is we TRY everything! That is exactly what we did with a glass of Entre-Deux-Mers!
We hit mile 26 and I will never forget how I felt. I was pretty beat from a combination of the hot sun, the course and the wine. Unfortunately, the finish line was not in sight! Our Garmin’s were telling us we were done, we did not see the finish line. You can only imagine how I felt! It ended up being another five tenths of a mile before we saw the finish line!
We made it- Our first international marathon together! I want you to know that prior to this run, we knew nothing about the 7 continent marathon runs. We went on this run for the wine and for the experience. As we visited with other runners we became informed of all the opportunities out there for us to continue to run together and experience the world! This was the beginning of our 7 continents tour!!!!
— Few Days before the Marathon and all the Wine Tastings
— The Party the night before the Marathon. Not the normal Pre-Race Party. Wine was delivered to our table non-stop. I have never seen so many drunk runners…and they actually finished the marathon!! Amazing!!
– No restrooms on the marathon path….but plenty of grapevines 🙂 Did you know that 2005 is said to be one of the best years for wine in France….must be the fertilizer that we provided 🙂
– Hearing the French Spectators cheer us on by saying Allez!
– Winning the Marathon Tours Costume Contest- Check out Tarzan and Jane!
– The guy passing me wearing nothing but a thong…yuck!
– The guy (I think) wearing clogs the entire 26.2 miles!
– 8 guys dressed as a caterpillar- yes they all had to go to the bathroom at the same time!
– Mile 26.2..where was it????? We were at 26.2..but no finish line? We actually had to run another mile to finish. I was not a happy camper as when I am done, I am done!
– Mile 24- Oysters and More Wine
– Meeting all the different people from all the different countries around the world!
– The beginning of our 7 continents tour!!