Athletics

Water crisis: Two Oceans Marathon to go ahead, but ...

Two Oceans finish line (Getty Images)
Two Oceans finish line (Getty Images)

Cape Town - Organisers of the 2018 Two Oceans Marathon have confirmed that this year's race will go ahead despite the current water crisis affecting the Western Cape.

Reports circulated in recent weeks that the 56km race, as well as the ever-popular Half Marathon and trail runs, were in jeopardy as Capetonians deal with the water shortage gripping the city and surrounding areas, with 'Day Zero' currently set for Thursday, April 12, 2018 - only 12 days after the scheduled running of the 49th Two Oceans Marathon.

However, on Thursday, organisers issued a press statement confirming the race remains on track and will proceed as planned - albeit with a number of water-saving changes...

After over a year of planning, the 2018 Two Oceans Marathon is set to take place on Saturday, March 31.

And as one of the City of Cape Town’s premier events on the calendar, the ongoing severe drought has presented a harsh reality for the event, our stakeholders and participants.

We are aware of the concerns voiced by worried citizens, and we take saving water - and the event’s overall water impact on the City - incredibly seriously.

We have been, and are currently working closely with the City of Cape Town and their disaster management team, as well as our sponsors, to put the appropriate provisions and solutions in place for the 49th Two Oceans Marathon event as part of a very comprehensive water management plan.

We can confirm the following solutions in the meantime:

- No municipal water will be used for any of our events.

- There will be no showers at the finish.

- There will be refill stations available for hydration pack users – and we encourage all runners to be as self-sufficient as possible

- We are reducing the number of refreshment stations, while still being well within the range - more than the limit, in fact - of IAAF / ASA water point regulations

We understand that Capetonians are worried, especially because approximately half of the entry field are from outside of the Cape Town Metropole.

However, we are also required to consider the economic boost for the city (over R675 million, together with thousands of jobs being created during this time) and the charities that partner with the event (over R3 million is raised every year).

It is also important to consider that Cape Town welcomes thousands of visitors from across the globe on a daily basis - not just during major events like the Two Oceans Marathon - who play a vital role in the economic growth of the city.

A formal announcement detailing all our interventions will be made as soon as we have concluded our agreements with the relevant role-players.

While we are working hard behind the scenes to finalise these details, we as fellow Capetonians remain fully committed to saving water and use less than our allocated 50 litres per person per day.

Through our close collaboration with the city and relevant stakeholders, we pledge to host the event responsibly and not impact negatively on our scarce resources.

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