Reggae Marathon weekend December 1-3
The 16th staging of the Reggae Marathon, Half Marathon, and 10K will be held from December 1-3 in Negril. The run-off will begin on the IAAF-certified course at the Long Bay Beach Park, located along Negril's famed seven-mile beach, then loop into the town of Negril, before heading north towards the town of Green Island.
The main event will start at 5:15 a.m. on Saturday, December 3, and the course will remain open for six hours. New for 2016 will be that marathoners must reach the half-way mark in three hours to stay in the event.
"We are expecting a minimum of 2,500 participants from more than the 35 countries which participated last year," said Alfred 'Frano' Francis, race director of the Reggae Marathon, Half Marathon & 10K event.
Francis said a number of groups and individuals have already registered their attendance. In fact, he said, one participant has timed his honeymoon in Jamaica to coincide with his participation in the sport event.
One of the highlights of this year's event will be the participation of the 2016 winners of the Tottori Prefecture Marathon, in Japan, as part of a twinning agreement between the Westmoreland Parish Council and its counterpart in Japan, the Tottori Prefeture.
Leading up to the December event in Negril, a Burger King-sponsored 'Run Di Road' 10K Race Day will be held on Sunday, November 6, starting from the Burger King store at the Portmore Mall, beginning 7 a.m. Participants will be allowed to run or walk the race. In addition, the popular 4x1500m relay for students will also be opened to tertiary institutions and members of running clubs.
Participants in 'Run Di Road' 10K Race Day can register at runningeventsja.com or pick up registration forms at Burger King's head office, 18 Hope Road, as well as the Burger King stores at Portmore Mall and Braeton.
"We are very proud of the fact that we will, again, be using hi-tech scoring systems for the Reggae Marathon, Half Marathon & 10K," Francis said.
Scoring for Reggae Marathon, Half Marathon & 10K will be provided by MYLAPS Bib Tag timing system, with live on-line tracking of runners along the course available on www.reggaemarathon.com and interim results posted during the race.
There will be over US$10,000 in total prize money this year, together with finisher certificates, as well as Bob Marley and Rita Marley trophies to the male and female winners of the Reggae Marathon. In addition, there will be a special prize category for high school boys and girls in the 10K and special prize categories for teams in the Half Marathon and 10K.
Last year, no local prize winner broke the Reggae Marathon course records in any of the three events, so this year the Jamdammers Running Club of Kingston will continue to offer a special prize purse to any local who will break any of these course records.
Major sponsors of the 2016 Reggae Marathon, Half Marathon & 10K are: Jamdammers Running Club of Kingston; PUMA Running; Jamaica Tourist Board; Couples Resorts Jamaica; JHTA - Negril Chapter and Jamaica Athletics Administrative Association.