As many runners gear up for the forthcoming London Marathon, a feat of athletic ability and charitable giving, one French marathon has very different ideas, using the 26.2-mile course to allow runners to sample some of the region’s finest cheeses and wines.
Named the Marathon du Medoc, regular wine and cheese stations line the route, taking the place of traditional water stations. Within these stations runners can sample wine, cheese, grapes, ice creams and oysters from the area.
The route takes runners through beautiful estates, vineyards and past ancient castles, and with six hours to complete the marathon, participants have ample time to take in the scenery and enjoy each and every wine and cheese they come across.
Of course, if you are looking to challenge your personal best and showcase your athleticism, then this probably isn’t the marathon for you, particularly in light of the fact that the majority of participants wear fancy dress. Looking back over previous races, there has been wine bottles, glasses, grapes, there have been cave men, gladiators, cowboys and even a zebra!
The race has been held annually since 1985, and is thought of as the longest marathon in the world due to number of activities that greet runners throughout the route. Each year an estimated 8,500 people of 50 different nationalities take part.
Whilst many may not be in any hurry to finish in first place, there is indeed a prize for the fastest male and female categories, who each win their weight in delicious Medoc wines, with a case of wine awarded to the top three in each category.
Of course, for the team here at J.S Bailey, any event that involves delicious cheese is fantastic in our book and that is incentive enough for us.