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Record Gold Coast Marathon numbers prompt organisers to adapt the course
A huge surge in popularity for this year’s Gold Coast Marathon has prompted race organisers to increase capacity of the event to meet growing demand.
Queensland Tourism Industry Development Minister Kate Jones has announced that this year’s event, being held on 6th and 7th July, will see a diversion to the marathon route which will allow for an extra 1500 runners to compete, bringing total marathon entries available to 8000 runners.
A 2.2 kilometre section of the course will be modified in the Mermaid Beach area which will see the course take a turn south onto the Gold Coast Highway to allow runners to head north on Hedges Avenue without oncoming competitors.
Minister Jones said extra entries would be a boon for the local economy and reinforced the Gold Coast’s status as a premier sporting and holiday destination, advising "growing the Gold Coast’s major events industry is a marathon, not a sprint.
“Over a long period, we’ve grown the Gold Coast Marathon to be one of the most sought-after on the planet.
“Major events like the marathon are crucial when it comes to growing our tourism sector.
“Athletes bring their families and want to have a holiday on the Gold Coast – that’s why growing this event just makes economic sense.”
Queensland Assistant Tourism Industry Development Minister and Member for Gaven Meaghan Scanlon added "last year we saw 60,000 total people generate more than 100,000 visitor nights and more than $28 million for the local economy. This event is a great boon for the Gold Coast’s tourism industry.
“The Gold Coast Marathon is an internationally-recognised event and remains an attraction for international entrants with entries this year already showing strong increases from key international markets including Indonesia and Singapore by 37% and 30% respectively.”
Events Management Queensland Chief Executive Cameron Hart said the small change in course would benefit participants and Gold Coast residents.
Hart went on to say "by diverting a very small section of the course at a key pinch point, we have minimised the impact to residents and businesses along the marathon route, whilst increasing entry numbers into the race."
“The changes mean that more runners will get to experience our famous fast, flat and scenic course and avoid the disappointment of not securing a spot in the race.”
Hart added he was confident of another increase in entries this year after last year’s marathon sold out for the first time a month ahead of the July race, concluding "last year was a special year for us, with the 40th anniversary of the race and the sporting spotlight placed on the region with the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games and entries this year are on track for another record-breaking event."
The Gold Coast Marathon is the first in Australia to hold an IAAF Road Race Gold Label and is expecting over 28,000 participants in eight races over two days.
The event will feature the marathon, wheelchair marathon, ASICS Half Marathon, wheelchair 15km, Southern Cross University 10km Run, Gold Coast Airport Fun Run, Garmin 4km Junior Dash and Garmin 2km Junior Dash.
The Gold Coast Marathon is organised by Events Management Queensland, a major event management company wholly owned by the Queensland Government as part of Tourism and Events Queensland.
4th December 2018 - 2019 Gold Coast Marathon expected to attract record number of participants
2nd October 2018 - Gold Coast Marathon delivers $28.5 million into Queensland economy
8th June 2018 - 40th Gold Coast Marathon’s signature event sold out
12th April 2018 - Commonwealth Games legacy to make the Gold Coast an innovation hub
26th February 2018 - Research shows Queensland a world leader in endurance event tourism
27th December 2017 - Thousands from around the world to celebrate Gold Coast Marathon milestone
1st June 2016 - Queensland looks for recognition as ‘endurance capital’
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