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Last Updated: Tuesday, 29 June, 2004, 17:24 GMT 18:24 UK
Marathon
VENUE FACTFILE
The marathon will be run on its original route
Events: Marathon
Spectators: 35,000 at finish
Athletes: 100 men, 800 women
Schedule:
22 Aug Women's marathon
29 Aug Men's marathon
Paralympic event:
26 Sept
The 2004 marathon will start in the Greek village of that name and follow the original route of the famous event.

According to legend, a Greek herald named Phidippides ran 26 miles from Marathon to Athens to announce the Greek victory over the Persians.

He is said to have died on delivering the news about the battle of Marathon.

The 2004 race will finish at the Panathinaiko Stadium - the famous marble arena where the Games were revived in 1896.

It is also where Spyros Louis became the first marathon gold medal winner of the modern era.

The official distance of the modern marathon is 26 miles and 385 yards.

After months of uncertainty and delays, the route will be ready for the women's marathon on 22 August followed by the men's event on 29 August.

Setbacks caused the construction contract to be handed to a new firm as late as 10 March. The new contractors were ripping out and repairing parts of the badly reconstructed route as recently as May.





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