Race Website: http://www.semideparis.com/
Registration Website: http://www.asochallenges.com/ (next year's race is March 9, 2014)
Cost: 40 euros
Size: 30,700 participants
Bib Pickup: Hall de la Pinède at Parc Floral de Paris, Bois de Vincennes
Goodies: T-shirt, wrist sweat band, plastic poncho, muscle relax gel, workout towel, race pamphlets (with helpful and hilarious tips...) and best of all--a small pouch of strawberry tagadas, miam! As soon as I realized the candies weren't "fuel" candies I ate them.
+ You get to see Paris on the run!
+ The crowds are good once you move toward the center of the city.
+ Since it's a fairly big race, the information put out by the organizers is clear and concise.
+ Timing chip is on your bib so you don't have to wait in line at the end for the race organizers to snip a chip off your sneaker.
+ The expo is well put together, but...
- The expo is a million miles away from the closet metro. Seriously, the walk to Parc Floral is ridiculous.
- The T-shirt looks nearly identical to last year's marathon shirt. I know this isn't a huge deal, but you'd think they'd mix it up a bit. With Paris as the backdrop, think of all the amazing promotional materials they could come up with. Bright neon shirts don't scream creative to me.
- Oranges at fuel stations are dangerous! I know some folks love orange slices, but it screams old school and I see runners slip on the discarded peels all the time. For those running in a slower pace group the peels become especially problematic because several thousand runners have already passed through the fuel station leaving their trash along the route. Paris races are dying for good sponsors for fuel stations and after race tents! Untapped market, wink wink!
Final call: Would definitely do it again!