Cambridge Half Marathon to go ahead despite the snow
Race organisers say they are working to make the course 'safe and suitable' for runners on Sunday
The Cambridge Half Marathon will take place as planned on Sunday (March 4), despite the snow.
Efforts to make the course “suitable” for runners are ongoing and runners have been advised to wear “plenty of layers” before and after the race.
A statement from the organisers, OSB Events, at 8.30pm on Friday confirmed: “The 2018 Saucony Cambridge Half Marathon will be taking place as planned on Sunday 4th March 2018.
“The full set up and delivery team are on site setting up the race village and ensuring the course is safe and suitable for runners on Sunday.
“We are continuing to monitor the weather forecast very closely and Sunday’s weather in Cambridge is looking better than today and tomorrow.
“The conditions will, however, remain unseasonably cold and rainy so we highly recommend you wear plenty of layers to keep you warm and dry pre and post race. There will be foil blankets available for all runners at the finish.”
Some 9,000 runners have registered to run - general entries sold out within hours of going on sale.
Those who can’t make it due to the freezing weather have been given an offer for next year’s half marathon.
The organisers said: “If you are unable to make the event on Sunday due to weather conditions we are offering a guaranteed place at an early bird price for the 2019 Saucony Cambridge Half Marathon.
Please email firstname.lastname@example.org before midnight on March 3, 2018, confirming your 2018 race number.”
The seventh annual event is also a big draw for spectators, who were also advised to wrap up warmly amid the freezing conditions that have swept into the UK from Siberia in the last week.
The organisers advised: “All those planning to come to the event should keep an eye on travel reports and may need to allow extra time for their journey.”
Race director Adam Moffatt added: “We would like to assure everyone that we are working closely with Cambridge City and Cambridgeshire County Councils to ensure that the 2018 Saucony Cambridge Half Marathon goes ahead this Sunday. Runners will have seen the weather reports and be very aware of the impending bad weather this coming week. We are receiving detailed daily weather reports so that we are able to make decisions based on the most accurate information available. All decisions will be based entirely on the safety of runners as this is our absolute priority.
“We ask competitors and spectators to make sure they dress appropriately for the weather conditions. We will be issuing regular updates via email, our website and social media channels, and we would appreciate everyone keeping up-to-date with information as it comes through.”
The run starts at 9.30am on Midsummer Common and follows a one-lap 13.1-mile route through Cambridge, giving runners the chance to pass by The Backs and King’s College before taking in Grantchester, Market Square and the Round Church.
Runners will raise money for Cancer Research UK through the event.
Meanwhile, Cambridge City Council has caught the running bug.
It is exploring open spaces in the city alongside Parkrun UK to find a location to host one of its free, weekly timed 5km runs. Consultation on a site will begin in March.
Cllr Richard Johnson, executive councillor for communities, said: “I am incredibly proud to welcome the return of the Cambridge Half Marathon for its seventh edition.
“Since it first started the council has worked closely with the organisers to help the event grow into one of the main events in our sporting calendar. As well as being a great way for many people to improve their fitness and motivation, the half marathon also raises large amounts of money for a host of good causes.
“If the half marathon inspires other residents to consider taking up running or just increasing their activity levels, they can find out more on our website.”
Cllr Anna Smith, executive councillor for streets and open spaces, said: “It’s a pleasure to welcome the Saucony Cambridge Half Marathon to the city again this year, and to be able to make some of our beautiful open spaces available for the event.
“I want to send my best wishes to all the runners, especially the many Cambridge residents who have been inspired to train over the winter months, and hope they are ready now to enjoy the big day.”
A pre-event expo for runners is being held at Anglia Ruskin University’s East campus from 10am-6pm on Saturday.