Locals make the most of race on doorstep

ORGANISERS of Sunday’s new-look Guernsey Marathon are expecting bumper numbers despite – in fact, largely because of – the Covid pandemic.

The last Guernsey Marathon in 2018 attracted a large proportion of visiting runners. This Sunday’s race is set for a big field made up of locals. (Picture by Peter Frankland, 28820657)
The last Guernsey Marathon in 2018 attracted a large proportion of visiting runners. This Sunday’s race is set for a big field made up of locals. (Picture by Peter Frankland, 28820657)

Distance.gg president Michael Quittenden said they could see 170 or more locals on the roads for the full 26.2 miles.

That is a vast rise from the circa 120 runners that took on Peter Head’s last ‘Waterfront’ marathon in 2018 – 85% of whom were visitors.

Head’s event went under for largely financial reasons, but distance.gg have since taken on the organising mantle alongside 3D Events and Quittenden called the entry ‘fantastic’.

‘It’s because of lockdown, I think,’ he said.

‘A lot of people run marathons abroad and there’s not a lot going on this year... people have not been able to get away to London or anything, which is a shame.

‘We figured we could have 300 runners on the road at any one time,’ he added while factoring in the 460-strong entry in the two or five leg relays.

‘It’s going to be locally well-supported and we will still have some top-level runners.’

The husband-wife combo of Richard Friedrich and Ulrike Maisch are the two big names of the field, with the improved Nick Mann and Rosie Williams other likely front-runners by form.

Quittenden reported that some up-and-coming Kenyan runners were among those denied a visit by Covid restrictions.

The pandemic has also caused certain organisational troubles, including the final course measuring being confirmed only this week.

Distance.gg are still encouraging more volunteers to sign up for marshalling duties.

The full marathon starts at 9am from Castle Emplacement, with relays 30min. later, and information can be found at https://guernsey-marathon.com.

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