Athens Classic Marathon has brought to debt-laden Greece the glamour lost in the Armageddon of the financial crisis.
Athletes, managers, tourists and Greek citizens participated to what has been proven to be revival of a sick economy and society.
Three days of celebrations and records changed the country's hurt image.
Raymond Bet was the first of the 9,500 marathon racers who entered the Panathenaic Stadium. He won the gold medal last year as well.
However, apart from the 26,000 participations in the 5-kilometer, 10-kilometer and 42-kilometer races, Greece broke much more than just records.
To be more specific, more than 6,000 people worked for the Marathon's success. Between them 1,800 were volunteers, 700 policemen and 160 in emergency health teams.
According to Mr Kostas Panagopoulos, the President of Hellenic Athletics Association, the marathon brings 30 million euros into Greece. Even though 7 million euros are paid in taxes, it should be mentioned that this major event contributes to crisis-affected sectors.
Hotel owners in the center of Athens could celebrate as visitors made reservations, while Greek tavernas and restaurants earned more money.
Furthermore, recent data had shown that many people who visit Greece during the marathon will come back in the future either for vacation or to participate to another race. This means more money for the country.
Besides, it is important to know that behind Athens Classic Marathon -- apart from sponsors -- is SEGAS, the Hellenic Athletics Association, who is the organizer of this celebration.
The 30th Athens Classic Marathon is over. But SEGAS has already started working on the 31st marathon in 2013 because the best is yet to come...
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