The Paris Marathon was run on Sunday and we were there!  No not running….but to support a couple of fit friends who were!
For the forty thousand competitors, months of training was about to be tested.
The Champs Elysee was the scene of the start of the forty two kilometre race. Organised chaos reigned but the runners quickly found their starting positions and it was time to go!
Ten minutes later, they came down the Rue Rivoli where a small but loud cheer squad of Aussies was waiting to support our runners. What we are not prepared for, were the large number of Aussie entrants who, when seeing the Australian and boxing kangaroo flags, yelled out to us!  A quick chant of “aussie, aussie, aussie, oi, oi, oi” and they were on their way!

Support Flags Flying
Support Flags Flying

 
Other cheer squads were not to be missed!
The Pink Girls!
The Pink Girls!

 
The para entries and teams came through first.
Team Runners
Team Runners

 
Hot on their heels were the leading runners, who were looking very fit at this stage.
The Leaders
The Leaders

 
Followed by the pack!
The runners on Rue Rivoli
The runners on Rue Rivoli

 
Some of the runners had dressed up adding to the atmosphere.
Costumes at the Paris Marathon
Costumes at the Paris Marathon

It was a cold day. The maximum only reched nine degrees and the wind chill factor was huge, so when our runners disappeared towards Porte des Vincennes, we disappeared into the nearest cafe for a pastis, the traditional french drink to warms the bones!
A couple of hours later the runners returned along the Seine providing a stunning view for us.
Running along the River Seine
Running along the River Seine

Our last stop was the finish line in Avenue Foch.
A quick train ride and were walking past the Arch de Triomphe.
Arc de Triomphe
Arc de Triomphe

Competitors were cheered across the line, coloured papers flying and encouragement given to some who could only jut make it
Just before the finish line
Just before the finish line

 
They were quickly given their blue panchos to keep warm, their yellow t-shirts and the all important medal. We followed this sea of blue home!
Follow the sea of blue
Follow the sea of blue

 
Congratulations to everyone who ran and especially to our friends Ben & Simon who both finished this fantastic marathon.
New York next!
 
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