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21 de December de 2023

2023, the year of the rebirth of the Zurich Marató Barcelona in numbers

The year is coming to an end and it’s time to take a look at the health of the marathons at home, starting with Barcelona and Valencia, passing through Seville and not forgetting San Sebastian, Madrid and Malaga. 2023 has been the year of rebirth for the Zurich Marató Barcelona. After some complicated years for all the organizers due to the Covid-19 pandemic and the suspension or postponement of many events, this has been the year in which the national marathon sector has left these bad times behind.

Runners are getting ready again, either to make their debuts, to try to improve their personal bests or to get to know a new circuit, a new city and live a new experience. A latent tendency that has materialized in the growth of the Barcelona Marathon, which has consolidated itself amongst the first three national marathons, ahead of Madrid, Málaga or San Sebastián, as one of the long distance asphalt races with more participation, more finishers, more foreign marathoners and with one of the fastest routes in the country, with a best time of 02:05:06h, only behind Valencia (02:01:48h) and Seville (02:04:59h).

With the new route planned for 2024, the Zurich Marató Barcelona aspires to equal Seville in terms of records and, above all, to consolidate itself as an unmissable event in the calendar for thousands of marathon runners, both from outside the country and from the rest of Spain. In this year’s edition of the Catalan capital’s marathon, around 55% of the total participation was international, travelling to Barcelona to enjoy the experience of running a monumental marathon through the most emblematic points of the city. Only Valencia, with 57% of international participants, and Malaga, with 60%, beat this figure, with the Malaga race being held just a week after the Valencian one.

If it is placed in the Top 3 in terms of foreign participation and fastest route, the Zurich Marató Barcelona climbs up to the second position in Spain in terms of runners arriving to the finish line, finsihers. 10,853 runners crossed the wall in Barcelona in 2023, only surpassed by the 26,251 finishers of the Valencia Marathon. Seville with 8,239, Madrid with 7,405, Malaga with 3,552 and San Sebastián with 2,684 (out of 3,500 marathoners) continue this ranking, with a special mention for the Zurich Donostia-San Sebastian Marathon, for its high percentage of runners finishing under 3h (40%).

Undoubtedly, all these data are subject to further comparisons. But what they do ensure is that in Spain we enjoy great marathon health, both in terms of participation and organization. One makes the other better, and everything indicates that for the foreseeable future, we will continue to grow. 2024 is just around the corner and it’s time to see how Seville continues to grow or how fast the new Zurich Marató Barcelona circuit will be, without forgetting that sooner than we think we’ll be surprised by the data of a new edition of the Valencia Marathon.

Nacho Cáceres

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