Cape Town Marathon gets IAAF gold label status

2017-03-14 06:04

The Sanlam Cape Town Marathon now has IAAF gold label status.

“A first for Africa, and with less than 35 IAAF gold label status marathons internationally, this is a huge honour and achievement,” says race director Janet Welham.

Sue Forge, general manager of WPA, one of the event’s key partners, says: “Gold label status is the highest and most stringent standard awarded by the IAAF, the international governing body of running. We are exceptionally proud that this accolade has been bestowed on the Cape Town Marathon. It solidifies and elevates this event’s status to one of the very best in the world, and is a true testament to the meticulous organisation and passion of the entire team, its partners and sponsors.”

To achieve gold is a stringent process to meet a host of requirements, including the event’s attractiveness (history and heritage of the race, city, country and continent), the marketing of the event, the number of participants, prize money, equality and safety together with technical issues, such as official results, route measurements and doping requirements. Achieving the status requires a new application each year.

To have achieved gold label status adds a level of credibility that is unsurpassed, organisers say in a statement.

“I have always been inspired and motivated by achieving excellence,” says Elana Meyer, race ambassador. “Today, I feel privileged and honoured to be an ambassador of the marathon. It takes us a step closer to achieving our dream, and I will continue to embrace this event as a platform for change.”

One such example is the Run4Change legacy programme that aims to support and raise awareness for charities, health and wellness issues, environmental concerns, peace and development. It is open to anyone wanting to pledge their support irrespective of whether they are racing, visiting as a spectator or would simply like to make a positive difference.

Organisers are also hoping to increase the number of entries to 25 000 participants. The event will once again include a 10km peace run, 22km and 12km peace trail runs and a fun run, in addition to the flagship 42.2km standard marathon.

“National and international growth remains a key objective. In this regard, the aim is to grow international support of the event from 8.5% to 10%, and attract more foreign runners from around the world after 67 countries were represented in the Mother City last year,” says Welham.

Another first has seen organisers launch a captains’ challenge. Race ambassador and former Springbok rugby captain Francois Pienaar will take on the 42.2km race this year with former Proteas cricket captain Graeme Smith and Zanele Mdodana, former captain of the South African netball team.

Participants are invited to challenge other captains across all sports and industries, expanding on the existing campaign to #ChallengeYourself or #ChallengeYourFriend.


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