On your marks, get set… watch! Since launching in 2012 the Skechers Performance Milton Keynes Marathon has gained a reputation for being a friendly event with a great atmosphere and support from spectators and the local community.
The 2014 event takes place on Bank Holiday Monday, May 5. In addition to the main race organisers have also added the new MKM Half Marathon to the event for 2014, which, like the marathon, is on a traffic-free course and finishes at stadium:mk. The 2014 event also includes the popular Superhero Fun Run and the Geoffrey Leaver Corporate Team Relay. Skechers Performance Division is once again backing the event for 2014.
Race director, Andy Hully, said: “When the Skechers Performance Milton Keynes Marathon was named among the top 10 marathon races in the UK by readers of Runner’s World a lot of the feedback touched on the atmosphere and support out on the streets and redways of Milton Keynes.
“There are plenty of vantage points for spectators to take in the action, and it offers great access to spectators who are keen to watch their family and friends as the y move along the course. For a good view of the race spectators might want to watch at the following points: Start, Water Stops, City Centre, Groveway/Simpson, Willen Lake and Willen, Linford Wood, or at the finish inside stadiummk.”
Spectators at the start and finish area will have free access to stadium:mk all day, and be free to come and go as they like. They will also be able to watch the Superhero Fun Run, sponsored by Acorn Childcare. Hundreds of people, young and old alike, will run the 1.5 mile course wearing a range of fun and colourful superhero costumes.
Mr Hully added: “There’ll be a festival atmosphere around the course. As well as the spectators and impromptu noise makers cheering on the runners, we have a range of entertainment drawn from the local community providing entertainment along the route.”
· Retrobution at 3.5 and 4.5 miles - Weatherspoons, Midsummer Place
· Halfmoon Drum Circle at 2 and 6.5 miles - South Saxon Roundabout
· Lobo Tren Street Band at 5 miles - Silbury Boulevard
· Cairo Cats Belly Dancers at 7 miles - Coffee Hall Roundabout Underpass
· The Sunshine Dogs at 18 miles - Ship Ashore Pub, Willen
· Lobo Tren Street Band at 21 miles - Linford Wood, Breckland
There will also be cheering points where charities will be handing out water and cheering runners on. “The local community, as well as groups of Scouts, Girl Guides, running groups and local football teams, would be particularly welcome to support the charities that are manning water stops,” said Mr Hully.
· Age UK at 3 miles - Avebury Boulevard
· Rotary Club Brickhill at 6 miles - Saxon Gate
· Western Front at 9 miles - Groveway
· World Vision at 11 miles on the MKM Half route only - Saxon Street
· Help 4 Heroes at 12 miles - Elgar Grove, Browns Wood
· The Parks Trust at 15 miles - Willen Lake South
· St Francis at 18 miles - Linford Lane, Willen
· MK Grand Union at 21 miles - Breckland, Linford Wood
· Florence Nightingale at 24 miles - Marlborough Street
· Humanitas at 26.2 miles - Finish Line, Stadium MK
“We know that cheering crowds along the route is very motivating for the runners so we are encouraging local communities as well as family, friends and colleagues of the runners to come along and support the runners. It’s a fun day out for everyone,” added Mr Hully.
The marathon, MKM Half and the Geoffrey Leaver Corporate Team Relay start at 10am and the Superhero Fun Run starts at 10:30am. Course maps can be found on the MK Marathon website at www.mkmarathon.co.uk.