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Bournemouth and Poole are to host a new international Marathon for the first time.
Entries have opened for the running festival which will see thousands of runners from all over the world take to the streets of the coastal resorts on October 5 and 6, 2013.
Neil Kilgour, race director, said:
"The perfect environment has produced the natural environment for running as it should be".
"With miles of glorious, unspoilt golden sands and clear blue sea, Bournemouth and Poole, provide a beautiful backdrop for the ultimate run in a pure and clean natural environment.
"We're proud to launch a brand new Marathon Festival in such a stunning location. The spectacular, natural running environment and fresh air of Bournemouth and Poole will be loved by runners who want to run as it should be making it an exciting addition to the UK running calendar.
"There's so much more to the Bournemouth Marathon Festival. People can use the weekend as a goal for fitness, fundraising or as part of a fun weekend with the family.
"It's not all about running though, people can participate by helping out as race crew or simply by cheering the runners around the route. An event of this scale brings out community spirit and gives residents a sense of pride and coming together".
Typically, if you want to enter a major run such as a Marathon, Half Marathon, or 10k you have to choose different venues and dates. The Bournemouth Marathon Festival brings all of these together in one Festival of Running. There'll be a 5K "Speed of Light race" where runners will each be provided with a luminous LED wristband to light up the pier and promenade as they run at dusk
Runners taking part in the "Supersonic" 10k run will be treated to music from bands along the route, showcasing local musical talent. There will also be two junior races.
Jon Weaver, Marketing & Events Manager from Bournemouth Tourism said:
"We can't wait to host the 2013 Marathon Festival and welcome the thousands of runners expected over the weekend.
"Our established record of great award-winning family festivals and the stunning location is sure to excite everyone - runners, supporters, families, friends and the local community."
Cllr Judy Butt, Portfolio Holder for Public Engagement and Participation with direct responsibility for Sports and Leisure said:
"We are delighted to be hosting world class runners in our vibrant scenic town and showing off Poole's outstanding natural beauty.
"I am certain that our residents and community groups will take this opportunity to be part of this exciting new event and come out over the weekend to show their support for all those taking part."
Macmillan Cancer Support is the Bournemouth Marathon Festival official charity but there are hundreds of affiliated charities to choose to run for.
Entries are now open for the Bournemouth Marathon Festival on October 5 and 6, 2013. Just go to the website www.run-bmf.com
The 5K Speed of Light race, Supersonic 10K and two junior races for juniors will be on Saturday October 5th, 2013 and start from 2pm.
The Bournemouth Marathon starts at 10am on Sunday October 6th, 2013 from Kings Park. The route includes running on both piers as well as the promenade and the coastal arena of Poole and Bournemouth. The Bournemouth Half Marathon will start at 8am.
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