Review 2012: BMW Frankfurt Marathon shines despite the winter weather: BMW Frankfurt Marathon

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The 31st BMW Frankfurt Marathon has been a record setting event: more registrations than ever before (16,034), a new course record for the women’s race (Meselech Melkamu/2:21:01), approximately 450,000 spectators along the road, a crowd of 7000 people in the Festhalle at the famous red-carpet finish line, 47,000 visitors to the Marathonmall.

In total 21,646 happy runners crossed the finish line in the Festhalle during the weekend, including not only the marathon runners but the participants of the VGF relay marathon, the Mainova Mini-Marathon and the youngest, our Struwwelpeter-Kids. 

In short: Many of our dreams came true. It was an extraordinary event in many respects. For the first time the world-record holder Patrick Makau started in Frankfurt and for the first time the temperatures dropped to a freezing cold at the morning of the 31st BMW Frankfurt Marathon on October 28th 2012. It was three degrees Celsius in the morning at 10am and Makau was suffering: “It was really hard. Only after kilometre 35 did I think I could win this race.” Until then he didn’t make the best impression from afar. Though it was a sunny day it didn’t exactly get much warmer. Several time Makau grabbed his leg and his knee. So what should have been a race for a new world-record became a totally different drama instead. Patrick Makau, father of three children, finished well past his own world-record (2:03:38/2011 in Berlin) and came in after 2:06:08 hours. But he won a race that most people thought he had lost and overcame the trauma from the London Marathon this spring where he had to drop out due to sciatic problems.

Patrick and the other thousands of marathon runners were not the only ones suffering from the cold. The quite unexpected cold spell gave those more than 300 runners a hard time who got up on Saturday morning before the marathon to attend the traditional breakfast run – this time in driving snow. But those who turned up had interesting company. German running legend Dieter Baumann (5000 meter Olympic gold medalist), the rising marathon star, the young and beautiful Anna Hahner, and Fauja Singh, 101 years old and the oldest marathon runner of the world from London, led the cheery crowd. Shortly afterwards 1019 kids enjoyed the Struwwelpeter run powered by Mainova, which has become equally traditional and popular. 

Again, Frankfurt and the marathon turned out to be a good match. And not only Patrick Makau enjoyed the prime-time but also the thousands of runners and, of course, the two German topstars Sören Kah (2:13:57) and Lisa Hahner (2:31:28)  who gave her marathon debut.

It should also not be overlooked that we continued our efforts to become a climate-neutral marathon. Among many initiatives probably the lead car, the emission-free BMW ActiveE, stood out. 

Of course, this car made by our title sponsor will lead the elite again in 2013 on October 27th. We are looking forward to the 32nd BMW Frankfurt Marathon!