Do You Know the History of Dubai Marathon? Here’s How This Iconic Race Allured Thousands of Participants

Published 01/07/2024, 6:36 AM EST

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The Dubai Marathon 2024 is currently making waves worldwide as its 23rd iteration captures the attention of diverse audiences. Since its inception in 1998, this race has stood as one of Dubai, United Arab Emirates’ elite events. Referred to as the Gold Label Road Race by World Athletics, this classic event has continually attracted a growing number of runners, solidifying its unshakeable reputation over the years.

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The 42.195km Dubai Marathon consistently draws a remarkable number of runners annually, adding significant value to the event. The continuous increase in participants stands as compelling evidence showcasing the event’s development. The Athletics correspondent himself highlighted this rapid rise in the event’s popularity. Let’s take a panoramic view of the history of the Dubai Marathon.

The rise in the legacy of the Dubai Marathon 

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The Dubai Marathon’s origins trace back to 1998, and since its inception, it has steadily ascended to the pinnacle of sporting events. Witnessing a rise in participants, the inclusion of esteemed athletes, and the establishment of unshakable records, this event has evolved significantly from its humble beginnings. Athletics correspondent Pat Butcher has provided insight into the event’s growth, shedding light on the reasons behind its remarkable development.

Butcher expressed, “The history of the Dubai Marathon mirrors the growth of Dubai itself said Athletics correspondent”. With this, he confessed that this marathon started with only a couple of dozen runners.

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The Dubai Marathon took its first significant stride forward in 2005. However, the event’s value soared in 2008 when Haile Gebrselassie, regarded as the greatest long-distance runner globally, participated. His involvement significantly elevated the race’s prestige, sparking substantial growth that was evident by a noticeable boost in 2012.

During this particular event, several young debutants joined, with one finishing the race in under 2:04:00. It marked a historic moment as five runners achieved a finish time under 2:05:00, a first in marathon history. Subsequently, years later, an 18-year-old established a world junior record that remains unbroken. Remarkable occurrences like these have consistently drawn numerous participants to the event over the years.

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Facts about the past years of the Dubai Marathon 

Multiple records have been set in the Dubai Marathon ever since it started. In 2007 this marathon was made the event with the greatest cash prizes in history. It was announced that in 2008, the prize money for the world record will be one million dollars and $250,000 for participants grabbing the first position. However, the second fastest time was recorded by Gebrselassie but he couldn’t create a world record. 

Read more: WA Medalist Tigist Ketema Wins Gold Alongside Dubai Marathon Record on Debut

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In 2012 along with men, the women athletes were also extremely fast and the top three runners finished the race in under two hours and twenty minutes. 2018 witnessed a 13-year-old astonishing everybody by securing the ninth overall in the men’s race. In 2021, the marathon didn’t take place due to the pandemic. The Dubai Marathon has developed a lot over time and is still heading towards growth.

Watch this story: Reminiscing His Vacation Spree in Jamaica, World Champion Noah Lyles makes a Special Appeal Ahead of World Athletics Awards

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Written by:

Nancy Singh

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Hello there! I am Nancy Singh. I am a passionate sports enthusiast and a keen spectator of all things Olympics. My writing journey has been deeply influenced by the remarkable achievements of athletes like Mikaela Shiffrin and Kaylee McKeown, whose dedication and excellence serve as a constant source of inspiration for me.
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Edited by:

Suman Varandani

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