This weekend over 12,500 runners will descend on the city streets for the Brighton Marathon and Brighton Marathon 10k (BM10K). On Sunday morning at 9:45am, the optimistic hopefuls will begin the 26.2 mile endeavour as they run all over the city. The route will take them from Preston Park, through the city centre, all along the coast road towards Roedean, to return along the seafront to Shoreham Power Station before finally completely the loop just by Brighton Palace Pier on Madeira Drive. The 10k will start 45 minutes before the main event and will follow a somewhat similar route. Brighton Marathon was founded Tim Hutchings and Tom Naylor in 2010 and for the past 8 years it has not stopped growing in popularity. It is now the second largest marathon in the UK, and the eight largest in Europe. It also holds the second-place position for fastest Marathon in the UK, coming just behind London with both men and women’s best times being under 2hrs and 10mins.
This year will see the return of the ‘Cancer Research Children & Kids Mini Mile’, which is sponsored by Gatwick Airport. Unlike the marathon the event is free for those participating and instead the ask for a small (or large) donation to Cancer Research. Tom Naylor, Managing Director of The Grounded Events Company said of the return “We love to see children and teenagers signing up year after year and hopefully more will enter now that it is free once again thanks to Gatwick Airport. If we can inspire more children to take up running, then that’s a huge achievement for the Brighton Marathon Weekend.”
Lynn Daly, spokeswoman for Cancer Research UK, said: “Cancer Research UK ‘Kids & Teens’ is excited to be title sponsor of the Mini Mile for a third year. Since 2016 we have raised more than £50,000 and this year we’re looking to raise another £30,000. It’s fantastic that children are able to enter the Mini Mile, which is such a fun and enjoyable day, and at the same time, contribute to our research into cancers affecting children and teenagers.” Virgin Giving Money are the official fundraising partner for the marathon. The not-for-profit fund-raising platform ensures that donors and fundraisers can be 100% confident that their money is going to the causes of their choice.
This year Paul Sinton-Hewitt CBE will be the guest runner starting the marathon, “I’m delighted to be involved with The Brighton Marathon and BM10k at every level. These events are critical for so many folks of every ability and from all parts of the country. I get goosebumps just thinking about being at the start line seeing all those people getting ready to challenge themselves. I can’t wait for the day.” All of those challenging themselves will receive some goodies, a t-shirt and a medal for completing the marathon once they arrive back in the Village by Madeira Drive. The Village is the hub of everything for the marathon this weekend and will also hold an exhibition of local artists as well as being the charity hub for all those raising money while they run.
Brighton Marathon organisers have worked on their sustainability over the last few years and now actively try to use as little plastic and paper wherever possible. They have said themselves that there was a huge wastage when they gave out 500ml and 330ml bottles of water as competitors would take one or two sips and throw them, also causing a potential safety hazard. This year, as the New York marathon and others do, they will be using paper cups. In part to ensure the safety of the runners and also after consultation with a health specialist who suggested the ‘little and often’ drinking method is the best for those running.
Every year over 150,000 people come out on to the streets to cheer the marathon runners on. There’s very little chance of rain and the promise of 10 degrees plus heat…woah! Head down to one of the entertainment and spectator zones along the route to join in with festivities. If you are taking part in the marathon and need any more information, check out their website here.