Here’s a tale of two countries that combines activity with art.

 

Niagara Falls Marathon runners were transported across the river from Canada to the USA for the start of their race, at the world famous Albright-Knox Art Gallery in Buffalo, NY.  

 

While warming up – very necessary on a particularly chilly autumn morning – participants were able to explore one of the finest collections of modern art in the world.

 

This Boston qualifier race is one of the few in the world to start in one country and finish in another.  It’s also poignant to realise that 200 years ago the countries were at war, with British and American troops fighting along the marathon course that is now a picture of tranquillity.

26 October 2014
USA - Canada


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The first 5 miles of the race travel along the majestic parkway of Buffalo before crossing the Peace Bridge into the historic old town of Fort Erie, Ontario, Canada. 

 

The course loops around Fort Erie and doubles back into the town, passing along River Road, continuing on the scenic Niagara Parkway for the next 18 miles.  It has been voted one of the most scenic marathons in Canada, following the Niagara River to end at a historic power station beside the falls.

Technology set a new record at this year’s Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon; it became the first marathon in the world to be live-streamed on YouTube.

 

While cool temperatures and blustery wind prevented any speed records, thousands made the most of the flat, fast, Boston-qualifying race along the Lake Ontario waterfront.

 

With bands and Neighbourhood Entertainment Centres every 2km, cheerleaders and numerous aid stations, the race was as much a festival as an endurance event.

 

The YouTube live broadcast allowed race fans around the world to follow the event in real time, with professional commentary.  It was a collaboration between Toronto’s MaRS Dicovery District innovation hub, EndlessPotential Media Group and YouTube.

19 October 2014
Toronto - Canada


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“Marathons can now be in control of their own destiny and work to build audiences through their own channels (YouTube in this case) and social media,” said race director Alan Brookes. 


“No longer do we hope that a broadcast TV network will cover the race, but then show it at 2am on a Wednesday.  We feel this could open up a whole new world of world class marathons to a large and very interested audience.”

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