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Keeping Pace With 30K Runners in 2024 Chongqing Marathon | James' Vlog


Chongqing—The "double gold standard" 2024 Chang'an Automobile Chongqing Marathon, recognized both domestically and internationally, took place on the iconic Yangtze riverside strip of Nanbin Road on March 24. Thirty thousand runners divided equally between the full and mini-marathon events gathered at the starting line at 7 a.m. under clear blue skies and balmy mid-spring weather.

The sheer number of participants, along with traffic restrictions for the event, meant the best way to reach the media zone in plenty of time was to stay overnight nearby. This vlog captures the marathon highlights from before daybreak as the level of anticipation slowly builds. Later, my pass gave me access to the media zone beside the starting and finishing line and close-up views of the awards ceremony.

As the main body of running enthusiasts began heading back after the race, I caught up with participants from China and Ireland, who, despite experiencing a little heat exhaustion from the last ten kilometers, were in great spirits and praised Chongqing for its attractive cityscape and smooth organization. On the way, we also met a young mother and daughter who took part in the mini-marathon, and she described how the glamorous event had inspired the primary school-age girl to exercise more in the future.

Participants from 26 nations included big names such as the Kenyan runner Kimutai Kiplimo and Aberu Ayana from Ethiopia. At the same time, more than three thousand people had personal best times of three hours and under. Interestingly, the most senior runner that day was 79 years old, while the youngest was a mere seven months, as some families took infants for the mini-marathon in pushchairs.

In this vlog from Nanbin Road, iChongqing reporter James Alexander covers the main action live from beside the starting line and meets close-up with the competitors thanks to this unique once-a-year opportunity. 

(Li Tao, as an intern, also contributed to this report)


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