Marathoners Eye Up Airport

Postby Melissa_Theuriau on Tue 20/May/14 8:38pm

The Christchurch Airport Marathon has been the South Island's premier running event for more than three decades. But this year the annual Queens Birthday Weekend event is offering what could be a first for any marathon in New Zealand.

Scheduled this year for Sunday 1st June, organisers are expecting close to 5000 participants and a rare treat for them all will be the chance to run on the Christchurch Airport airfield itself.

As a special favour for this final year on the airport course, Christchurch Airport has gained permission for competitors to run on the airfield on the final approach to the finish line.

Christchurch Airport Chief Operating Officer Andy Lester says, “This is a rare treat and we’re not even sure it has been done in New Zealand before at an international airport. We think it fitting for the last run on the airport course.”

Following the Christchurch earthquakes, the Christchurch Airport Marathon was forced away from its traditional central city course. First to Lincoln for a year and then to a course hosted by the event’s principle sponsor, Christchurch Airport. But the event and its principal sponsor, Christchurch Airport, have been working with Christchurch City Council to return to a traditional central city course in 2015.

Race director Chris Cox says including the airfield will make for a fond farewell to the airport course.

“Christchurch Airport’s willingness to host the marathon played a big part in the event’s fast recovery after the earthquakes,” says Cox. “Being able to actually run on the airfield this year is another great initiative from them.”

“We know entrants like this flat, fast and scenic course,” says Andy Lester. “So as a farewell before the marathon heads back into town, we’re offering something different. “We asked the regulator if they would work with us to offer access most people don’t get and we are delighted they have agreed.”

“We suspect some entrants might spend a moment or two taking a ‘selfie’ on that part of the course,” laughs Lester.

“We would challenge everyone from individuals to schools, businesses and community groups to be part of a great occasion,” adds Cox.

With a full marathon, half marathon, 10k and the Kids’ Mara’Fun, the Christchurch Airport Marathon offers something for runners and walkers of all age and ability. “Our only real goal over the years has been for the Christchurch Airport Marathon to be a reflection of the community,” says Cox.

“We have the country’s best runners right through to people taking to the sport for the first time. We get entire families entering together, but also businesses like The Press newspaper entering big staff groups and schools training for it as part of their NCEA exercise science studies.”
The Christchurch Airport Marathon also generates substantial economic gains estimated at more than $2million thanks to more than 1000 visitors from 12 countries and all ends of New Zealand.

Runners from Australia and USA are among contenders for line honours. Another visitor with a more personal goal is Napier runner Warren Bernard. The 32 year old is including the Christchurch Airport Marathon in his bid to finish 20 marathons in 20 months. The Christchurch event will be the eighth of his 20.

Continuing with the community theme, this year’s Christchurch Airport Marathon continues to benefit Ronald McDonald House South Island. Participants are encouraged to sign up to run and raise funds for the family support charity.

For entries and information visit http://www.christchurchmarathon.co.nz. Race day is Sunday 1st June and every entrant can go into a draw for a free trip to the 2015 London Marathon.
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Re: Marathoners Eye Up Airport

Postby garryhutto on Tue 20/May/14 10:46pm

I've always had a vivid imagination
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Postby tankman on Tue 20/May/14 10:58pm

garryhutto wrote:I've always had a vivid imagination

I've alway fancied being born at least 5 centuries later than I was. :lol:
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Re: Marathoners Eye Up Airport

Postby happybaboon on Tue 20/May/14 11:03pm

Perhaps 16th century you got his wish :eh:
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Big Wigs & Too Much Eye Liner

Postby tankman on Tue 20/May/14 11:08pm

happybaboon wrote:Perhaps 16th century ... :eh:

Hmmm ... I hadn't considered that
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