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Highlights of 2017 Zhangjiagang International Marathon

The 2017 Zhangjiagang International Marathon began at Century Square in the beautiful port city of Zhangjiagang, Jiangsu province on Dec 3. More than 10,000 marathon enthusiasts from 21 countries took part in the race.

It is the first time that Zhangjiagang has hosted this kind of event with a gold medal standard. It is also an A-class competition that Zhangjiagang has registered for the first time with the Chinese Athletics Association.

Here are some highlights from the event.

The starting gun cuts through the biting morning air at Zhangjiagang Century Square at 7:30 am as the 2017 Zhangjiagng International Marathon begins on Dec 3. [Photo provided to chinadaily.com.cn]

A drone surveys the scene at the full marathon. [Photo provided to chinadaily.com.cn]

A runner smiles for the cameras. [Photo provided to chinadaily.com.cn]

Each runner is provided with a full goodie bag including food, memory card, official race shirt and booklet containing important information. [Photo provided to chinadaily.com.cn]

More than 4,000 volunteers are ready to serve the runners along the road by handing out supplies and cheering them on. [Photo provided to chinadaily.com.cn]

Kenyan runner Chepmwok Eliud crosses the finish line and claims first place in the men's full marathon with a time of 2 hours 23 minutes and 25 seconds. [Photo provided to chinadaily.com.cn]

Chelagat Jane from Ethiopia crosses the finish line to take first place in the women's full marathon with a time of 2 hours 48 minutes 4 seconds.

Hao Xiaofan crosses the finish line and claims first place in the women's half marathon with a time of 1 hour 15 minutes 57 seconds. [Photo provided to chinadaily.com.cn]

Liu Hongliang crosses the finish line to win first place in the men's half marathon with a time of 1 hour 4 minutes 40 seconds. [Photo provided to chinadaily.com.cn]

Qian Kai, a full marathon runner from Zhejiang province, proposes to his girlfriend at the finish line. [Photo provided to chinadaily.com.cn]

Eighty-four-year-old Guo Rongquan and 78-year-old Zhang Xiaomei come from Shanghai and both complete the 5-kilometer mini-marathon together. [Photo provided to chinadaily.com.cn]

The last three full-marathon runners reach the finish line before the door closes, winning applause for their perseverance. [Photo provided to chinadaily.com.cn]