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Belfast Marathon organizers apologize after course is 460 meters too long which is better than too short making it a non race

Belfast City Marathon organisers have apologised after admitting that Sunday's course was 0.3 miles longer than it should have been.

Belfast Marathon chairman David Seaton blamed "human error", saying the lead car diverted from the route.  "Approximately 460 additional meters were added to the officially measured course of 26.2 miles," he said.

"This was due to human error, with the lead car diverting from the official route."  Earlier, John Glover, the event's course measurer, said runners had twice been "taken off the measured route".

"The route run was 469 metres in excess of the route measured and approved by the Association of International Marathons," said Mr Glover.

In a statement, Mr Seaton said "protocols will be put in place to ensure this never happens again."  He added that race organisers were in the "process of adjusting runners' times to reflect the correct distance".

Following Sunday's race, a number of questions were raised on social media about the new course's length.

Kenyans Joel Kositany and Caroline Jepchirchir took victory in the first Sunday running of the event.  Kositany secured his fourth Belfast men's triumph as he crossed the line in two hours 18 minutes 40 seconds.

Jepchirchir repeated her 2018 win as she set the fastest ever women's time in Belfast, clocking 2:36:38.

This 38th staging of the event took place on a new course.  Event chairman Seaton said that the mistake will upset a number of competitors.  "I can understand if you have been aiming for a sub three-hour marathon time and because of the mistake you have ended up being just outside three hours on the clock, that you are going to be annoyed,” he said.  

"It's a hiccup that we obviously could have done without. But I don't think it should overshadow what was a very successful day with the numbers up significantly because of the new Sunday date.

"People have been coming up to us congratulating us on the day and saying it was a great event with the spectator number also well up on previous years."

(05/12/2019) ‚ö°AMP
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Belfast City Marathon

Belfast City Marathon

Over 17,500 runners are expected to hit the streets of North, South, East and West of the City. The event has grown with the inclusion of new sponsors which now include Deep River Rock, Belfast City Council, U105, ASICS, Daily Mirror, Translink, Athletics Northern Ireland, Linwoods, Belfast Live, Centra, White's Oats, Podium 4 Sport, U105 and Tayto. The route will...

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