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Hong Kong Marathon rescheduled for February next year

The Standard Chartered Hong Kong Marathon has been rescheduled to February next year, the organizer announced on Tuesday, days after canceling the race amid ongoing Covid-19 restrictions in the city.

“The Hong Kong Association of Athletics Affiliates (HKAAA) announced today… that it has received the Government’s full support to actively plan the staging of the 25th Standard Chartered Hong Kong Marathon on Sunday, 12 February 2023,” a press statement by the organizer read.

Last Friday, the HKAAA said the sporting event would not go ahead in November as planned, citing “insufficient time for runners and relevant stakeholders to adequately prepare for the race.” Organizers said they had yet to receive approval from the government with only two months remaining.

Commissioner for Sports Yeung Tak-keung questioned the group’s reason on Monday, saying the 2021 race was also approved with only two months to go.

He said the government had been in close contact with the organizer and provided help as best as it could. Yeung at that time said the HKAAA did not consider postponing the race, even there was an available slot in February.

Rescheduling

The HKAAA on Tuesday, however, reversed course, hours after Chief Executive John Lee had expressed disappointment over the axing of the popular sports event.

“Our position is very clear, we are very supportive and we want both sides to work towards the goal of making it happen,” Lee said during his weekly press briefing. “[I]t is both [in] the organiser’s interest, and Hong Kong government’s interest and the community’s interest for these things to happen. So I want that common will to be developed for the good of Hong Kong.”

Further details were yet to be announced by the HKAAA, but it promised to “strictly adhere to and implement all necessary anti-pandemic measures,” and work closely with relevant government departments.

Covid concerns

Several sporting events have been canceled or relocated due to Hong Kong’s strict Covid-19 measures, with all incoming travelers required to undergo three days of hotel quarantine and four days of “medical surveillance.” The city also maintains a four-person public gathering limit and an outdoor mask mandate.

Blaming the stringent quarantine rules, the organizers of the 2023 World Dragon Boat Racing Championships abandoned Hong Kong for Thailand on Sunday. The previous day, the Oxfam Trailwalker event was also called off.

Lee on Tuesday said the government would review the pandemic situation and make necessary adjustments to the quarantine policy, with an announcement to follow “as soon as possible.” Experts have called for measures such as mandatory hotel quarantine to be scrapped so that Hong Kong can begin to return to normalcy.

Hong Kong has reported a total of 1.71 million Covid-19 infections and 9,901 related deaths since the pandemic began.

 

(09/20/2022) Views: 87 ⚡AMP
by Almond Li
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HONG KONG MARATHON

HONG KONG MARATHON

The Hong Kong Marathon, sponsored by Standard Chartered Bank, is an annual marathon race held in January or February in Hong Kong. In addition to the full marathon, a 10 km run and a half marathon are also held. Around 70,000 runners take part each year across all events. High levels of humidity and a difficult course make finishing times...

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Hong Kong Marathon ordered that tattoos must be covered up, or would not be permitted to run

On Sunday, runners who were registered for the Standard Chartered Hong Kong Marathon were ordered to cover up political slogans and all tattoos on their bodies before being allowed to compete. Fifteen-thousand runners took part in the Hong Kong marathon, which marked the first race on the island since the start of the pandemic.

According to the South China Morning Post, the runners were told to cover up tattoos and political statements or they would not be permitted to run. This rule was created after the 2019 protests in Hong Kong as a way to discourage anti-government and pro-democracy demonstrations that have been running for the last year.

Organizers warned participants during registration to avoid wearing any items of political expression. 

“Anyone who uses the Hong Kong marathon as a platform for conveying and promoting political messages will face consequences,” organizers said in a press release. “This is a zero-tolerance approach.” Law enforcement was prepared heavily for the marathon, with police deploying counter-terrorism units on the race route.

The South China Morning Post reported that one runner was escorted to a changing room by police during a security check, and was told to change her shorts because of a printed political slogan on the side. Another man with a tattoo on his calf faced being kicked out of the marathon unless he covered it with a bandage, which he did.

2021 also marked the first year that the race banned costumes that cover the face for security reasons. A runner was told that he couldn’t run in his spiderman costume for personal identification purposes. 

(10/26/2021) Views: 501 ⚡AMP
by Marley Dickinson
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HONG KONG MARATHON

HONG KONG MARATHON

The Hong Kong Marathon, sponsored by Standard Chartered Bank, is an annual marathon race held in January or February in Hong Kong. In addition to the full marathon, a 10 km run and a half marathon are also held. Around 70,000 runners take part each year across all events. High levels of humidity and a difficult course make finishing times...

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Hong Kong Marathon likely to be held in October, but only some 10,000 fully vaccinated runners can join

Hong Kong Marathon is tentatively scheduled for October 24 after being suspended last year because of the pandemic, Commissioner of Sports Yeung Tak-keung said, but the number of participants will be reduced to some 10,000, while all must complete Covid-19 vaccination.

Yeung said that the race has been discussed by the Associations of Athletics Affiliates and was believed to be likely to come true. The association is expected to announce a decision within this week.

"If the marathon is held successfully, the route will be changed and the number of participants is expected to limit to some 10,000, with the requirements of completing two doses of vaccines," he said.

Speaking in a radio program today, Yeung said that some local television stations are negotiating with mainland authorities to purchase the broadcasting rights of the National Games of China to be held next month and that Hongkongers "will definitely be able to watch the games on TV."

But he said it is unknown how many stations can broadcast the games.

On the Tokyo Olympics which closed on August 8,Yeung said the record high six medals were out of expectation, which was very surprising.

He pointed out that the government has significantly pumped up resources allocated to sports over the past five years, from about HK$400 million in 2015 and 2016 to nearly HK$800 million this year.

Apart from increasing the number of athletes, the government has also put more resources in professional support, strengthening psychological and physiotherapy services, as well as hiring more physical trainers.

(08/17/2021) Views: 514 ⚡AMP
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HONG KONG MARATHON

HONG KONG MARATHON

The Hong Kong Marathon, sponsored by Standard Chartered Bank, is an annual marathon race held in January or February in Hong Kong. In addition to the full marathon, a 10 km run and a half marathon are also held. Around 70,000 runners take part each year across all events. High levels of humidity and a difficult course make finishing times...

more...
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Postponed 2021 Hong Kong Marathon set for October with 75 per cent cut in numbers

The twice-postponed 2021 Hong Kong Marathon, due to take place in October, will have its numbers cut by 75 per cent to 18,500, organisers have announced.

The participation numbers within the full, half marathon and 10km events has been reduced from its normal total of 74,000 as part of COVID-19 precautions.

The Hong Kong Association of Athletics Affiliates (HKAAA) said the Home Affairs Bureau had agreed in principle for the postponed event to take place but it still needed a stamp of approval from the government and Centre for Health Protection.

Organisers are seeking approval for the re-shaped event from senior Government and medical experts by August to have time to prepare for the races.

Negotiations for the latest arrangement began in March.

The 2021 race, due to take place on January 24, was postponed to April and then again to October.

The half and full marathons will accommodate 6,500 and 4,000 runners respectively, with the route largely unchanged from previous years.

The 10km race, which will involve 8,000 runners, will start at the Western Tunnel Toll Plaza as opposed to its usual location at the Island Eastern Corridor.

This is to ensure all three races share the same route to minimise the chance of COVID-19 infections.

The roll-out-style starting times remain the same despite the reduced field, with runners going off in batches of 200 to minimise contact.

All participants must be fully vaccinated at least two weeks before the race and must arrive with their masks on before the race, although they can remove them at the start line.

"The Government is eager to bring people back to normal life, and with the recent ease of the pandemic [restrictions], we are quite confident in finding a resolution to pave a way to stage the event his year," said HKAAA chairman Kwan Kee.

World governing body World Athletics said given the pandemic, there was no need to classify the event as gold-label and therefore organisers do not need to meet the "top runner" threshold.

Organisers nonetheless plan to invite elite runners from neighbouring countries who have comparatively lighter Government-imposed quarantine requirements.

They added that a bubble scenario was not feasible in terms of money and manpower.

In case the HKAAA needed to call off the event 14 days in advance, there will be a 50 per cent refund on entry fees - any later and refunds will not be offered, as is the case with many international race events this year.

Organisers have also pencilled in next year’s Standard Chartered Marathon events for February 13, 2022

(07/11/2021) Views: 460 ⚡AMP
by Mike Rowbottom
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HONG KONG MARATHON

HONG KONG MARATHON

The Hong Kong Marathon, sponsored by Standard Chartered Bank, is an annual marathon race held in January or February in Hong Kong. In addition to the full marathon, a 10 km run and a half marathon are also held. Around 70,000 runners take part each year across all events. High levels of humidity and a difficult course make finishing times...

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2021 Hong Kong Marathon postponed to October 24 due to the pandemic

The 2021 Standard Chartered Hong Kong Marathon, one of the city’s showpiece sports events, is postponed to October 24 because of the uncertainties surrounding the Covid-19 pandemic.

Organisers announced the decision on Friday, saying: “Public health and safety are our top priority. In light of the uncertain pandemic situation and to align with the government’s prevention measures, the organisers will continue to work with relevant government departments and stakeholders for appropriate preparation work.”

The event, which in February 2019 attracted 74,000 entrants in the 10K, half marathon and marathon categories, was originally scheduled to take place on January 24. But in August, the organisers announced a postponement without providing a date, although it is believed they were looking at April.

However, with Covid-19 still a major health threat in Hong Kong and around the world – with no sign of easing – organisers have decided to push it back to October to avoid the summer heat. They also wanted to avoid holding it too close to the following year’s marathon, which is scheduled for early 2022.

The 2020 event, originally set for February 9, was called off because of the outbreak of Covid-19 in Hong Kong.

The October date has gained support from relevant government authorities, including the police – who will provide the road permit – and Home Affairs Bureau, the de facto sports ministry.

The Hong Kong Association of Athletics Affiliates – the local governing body – needs five to six months to register runners, which means they do not have enough time to hold the race in early 2021 when the weather in Hong Kong is suitable for long distance running. Registration for the 2021 event is expected to open in the second quarter of next year.

(12/04/2020) Views: 680 ⚡AMP
by Chan Kin-wa
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HONG KONG MARATHON

HONG KONG MARATHON

The Hong Kong Marathon, sponsored by Standard Chartered Bank, is an annual marathon race held in January or February in Hong Kong. In addition to the full marathon, a 10 km run and a half marathon are also held. Around 70,000 runners take part each year across all events. High levels of humidity and a difficult course make finishing times...

more...
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Some reaction to the cancelling of the Standard Chartered Hong Kong Marathon due to the Coronavirus

Public health is our top priority. To support the government’s epidemic prevention efforts, the organiser cancelled the Standard Chartered Hong Kong Marathon originally scheduled for February 9.  Entry fees will be fully refunded with details to be announced shortly.

Local and international racers offer their thoughts as some 70,000 people deal with the fallout and lost training time

Here was some of the reactions: 

Gone Running’s Peter Hopper, who runs a local group which has been helping numerous runners prepare for the race, said this as the news reached those training for the marathon.  

“It's of course really sad that it has been necessary to cancel the Standard Chartered,” said Hopper, who has been holding weekly training sessions for the race. “I know how people feel after training diligently leading up to this and it is a big disappointment. However, at this stage, not knowing how serious the coronavirus can be, it is better to err on the side of caution. I am sure it was not an easy decision to make.”

Mainland Chinese runners have already faced a wave of cancellations with the upcoming Wuhan and Wuxi marathons axed and others scheduled as far ahead as June provisionally suspended. The overall reaction has been that of understanding, despite many runners having already booked hotels and plane tickets.

“I was ready to run for my third year and did not think that [the race] would be cancelled not because of HK separatists making trouble, but because of an epidemic. I have just cancelled my flights and hotel,” wrote one.

A Weibo running account had similar comments, including one which stated, “I would never have thought this race would be cancelled because of this reason.”

Bhoovarahan Desikan, 52, was planning on having the 2020 edition be his 100th marathon. His first marathon was in Hong Kong in 2005 and the 2020 race would have been his 15th. He ran marathons in Seoul, Moscow, Shenzhen and Taipei all last year. He said he “fully understands” the reason for cancellation and has no complaints, and will look to another race in the near future.

“We can’t control everything in life,” said Desikan, who was going to run with a number of friends from his running group, which is based out of Tung Chung. “As long as I am fit and alive to run, there will always be a marathon around.”

Hong Kong runner Christy Yiu Kit-ching, who was targeting a top five finish in hopes of qualifying for the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo before she had to pull out due to an injury, said public health and safety are paramount to the race.

“Although I have an foot injury and decided not to participate few weeks before, as one of the Hong Kong runners, I still feel disappointed with the cancellation of (the marathon),” she said.

Yiu, 31, who competed in the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, said the race has been in question for multiple reasons since this summer.

“In fact, many of us has worried about the cancellation or the arrangement of (the marathon) since last year when the draw lots was launched. I’m sure everyone has noticed that lots of competitions have also already been cancelled due to the the social violence.”

Ireland’s Caitriona Jennings, who competed for her country in the marathon during the 2012 Olympics in London, and now lives in Hong Kong, was planning on running the race February. She echoed Yiu’s statement that this was the right decision by the government.

Amy Mumford, who is a mother of five and cancer survivor, said running and competing gives her a formidable sense of self and empowerment. She said she has been getting up at three or four in the morning out in Clearwater Bay as part of her training and regular running routine.

“The coronavirus is spreading rapidly and it seems unavoidable to have had to cancel the Standard Chartered Marathon,” said the 41-year old who recently won the China Coast Marathon. “There will be many people as devastated as I am. All the training, compromise, nutrition and emotion involved. I think the most important aspect is everyone’s safety and health ... running makes my heart sing and for all those other runners out there, see you next year.”

Hong Kong expat, Aaron Tennant who is originally from the UK and was hoping to break the four hour barrier in his race, said he is definitely dealing with mixed emotions given the amount of effort he had put into his preparation.

“It is frustrating to see the training go to a waste,” said the 30-year-old. “But I completely understand the decision to cancel the marathon. I will look for an alternative, and so will the 70,000 other runners.”

(02/09/2020) Views: 979 ⚡AMP
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HONG KONG MARATHON

HONG KONG MARATHON

The Hong Kong Marathon, sponsored by Standard Chartered Bank, is an annual marathon race held in January or February in Hong Kong. In addition to the full marathon, a 10 km run and a half marathon are also held. Around 70,000 runners take part each year across all events. High levels of humidity and a difficult course make finishing times...

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Hong Kong canceled its largest marathon because of the coronavirus threat to the city

The Standard Chartered Hong Kong Marathon, originally scheduled for Feb. 8 and 9, will be scrapped for the first time since the bank began sponsoring it in 1997. The event involves 70,000 people this year and the government “believes it has to be canceled,” Lam said on Saturday as she raised the response level to “emergency.”

Hong Kong will face challenges on “multiple fronts” in 2020, Lam said, citing protests that have rocked the city since June and the spread of the coronavirus from China to at least 11 other countries.

“More protests and violence may come,“ she said. “An economic recession may also be something we cannot avoid. The epidemic will make matters worse for many industries.”

The government also extended school holidays for non-tertiary students to Feb. 17, and will indefinitely halt flights and rail services to the Chinese city of Wuhan, where the coronavirus originated, she said.

Lam’s comments came hours after she returned to Hong Kong from the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. She said she was in touch with advisers while traveling and denied criticism that her trip led to a delay in taking action against the virus.

“The government will continue monitoring the situation and be open to suggestions from various sectors,” Lam said. “The Chief Executive and Financial Secretary will roll out relief measures for industries when necessary.”

Lam also said Hong Kong will source masks and seek help from China’s State Council to increase the local supply, after pharmacies across the city sold out the stocks. In contrast, her government had enacted a rare emergency rule several months ago to impose a ban on face masks as part of a crackdown on protesters.

The virus, which started in December in a seafood and poultry market in Wuhan, poses a threat to Hong Kong’s economy, which is particularly vulnerable after seven months of protest that tipped the economy into recession in the third quarter. Lam has withdrawn a proposal that would’ve allowed for extraditions to China and triggered millions to rally against it, but protests have continued against abusive police tactics and eroding democratic freedoms.

(01/25/2020) Views: 1,067 ⚡AMP
by Blake Schmidt, Natalie Lung, and Fion Li
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HONG KONG MARATHON

HONG KONG MARATHON

The Hong Kong Marathon, sponsored by Standard Chartered Bank, is an annual marathon race held in January or February in Hong Kong. In addition to the full marathon, a 10 km run and a half marathon are also held. Around 70,000 runners take part each year across all events. High levels of humidity and a difficult course make finishing times...

more...
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The Hong Kong Marathon prize money competes with major world marathons

The men’s and women’s winners of next month’s Standard Chartered Hong Kong Marathon  will each receive a cash award of US$65,000 (HK$507,000) from the organizers, a figure which does not lag far behind other major races around the world.

Although the amount remains the same as last year, the annual Hong Kong showpiece, to be held on Sunday, February 9, is still attractive to many distance runners from marathon powerhouses such as Kenya and Ethiopia, with all top 10 finishers to be rewarded.

The runner-up will receive US$30,000 with US$15,000 going to the third-placed finisher, down to US$1,000 to the runner who finishes 10th.

There will be an additional bonus for runners who can break the 42.195-kilometer course record starting from Nathan Road in Tsim Sha Tsui to the finish in Victoria Park on the Island side. But after Barnabus Kiptum, of Kenya, set an impressive time of two hours, nine minutes and 20 seconds for the men’s in 2019 and Volha Mazuronak of Belarus’s 2:26:13, which was also set last year, it would be a touch challenge to collect that extra US$12,000 (HK$93,600) cash bonus.

But if they can’t beat the course record, there is still be a consolation prize of US$10,000 if a runner can finish below 2:10 in the men’s and 2:28 in the women’s.

Local runners may struggle to beat the overseas legions to collect the cash awards, but the best Hong Kong runner is still rewarded with a cash prize of US$3,400 (HK$26,500), down to US$200 for the 15th place finisher. 

Hong Kong runners may also find it difficult to set personal bests because of the difficult course, which involves running up to the top of Stonecutters Bridge from the 10km mark before going through the Western Harbour Tunnel when they reach the Island side. But it serves as a good opportunity to secure some prize money.

In Asia, the 2020 Tokyo Marathon, which will be held a month after the Hong Kong event, offers US$98,000 to the men’s and women’s champions as one of the six marathon majors in the world. The Seoul International Marathon, also in March, rewards each winner US$80,000, provided they can finish below 2:10 for the men’s and 2:24 for the women’s. If not, the two winners receive US$40,000 each.

The Dubai Marathon in UAE once offered a stunning cash prize of US$200,000 for the winners, but the 2020 event only sees a top prize of US$100,000, which is the same amount offered by the two Majors in the United States – the Chicago and New York City Marathons. The Boston Marathon, which began in 1897 and usually takes place on the third Monday of April, hands out the biggest cheque of US$150,000 to the 2020 champions.

At least 4,000 marathon runners have entered the IAAF “Gold Label” event in Hong Kong, including home favorite Christy Yiu Kit-ching who aims to get into the top five in the women’s category to secure her berth for the 2020 Tokyo Games.

(01/23/2020) Views: 1,530 ⚡AMP
by Chan Kin-wa
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HONG KONG MARATHON

HONG KONG MARATHON

The Hong Kong Marathon, sponsored by Standard Chartered Bank, is an annual marathon race held in January or February in Hong Kong. In addition to the full marathon, a 10 km run and a half marathon are also held. Around 70,000 runners take part each year across all events. High levels of humidity and a difficult course make finishing times...

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Kenyan Barnabus Kiptum was so far ahead of his rivals that the runner-up thought he had won

Kenyan Barnabus Kiptum was so far ahead of the chasing pack in Sunday’s Standard Chartered Hong Kong Marathon that runner-up Dawit Wolde of Ethiopia thought he had won.

After finishing third in last year’s race, 32-year-old Kiptum was out of sight and out of mind as he blazed to a new course record. The Kenyan said it felt “amazing” to win such a prestigious race in an “iconic” city like Hong Kong.

“I’m so happy,” said Kiptum. “Hong Kong is one of my favourite places, full of good people. The race had so many [people watching] and this is how races, competitions, should be.

“I had so much fun and I hope I will be invited next year to defend my record.”

What makes Kiptum’s record of two hours, nine minutes, 21 seconds even more impressive is that he was able to achieve it despite rain, wind and humidity.

“I actually thought the weather was better than last year, when it was very hot,” he said. “If you want to be a champion runner, you have to be ready for any kind of weather.”

Kiptum beat the previous record of 2:10:31 set in 2017 by Ethiopian Melaku Belachew and he claimed a US$10,000 bonus for beating a 2:09:30 target set by organisers.

He takes home US$65,000 in prize money for his efforts, the most he has ever won in his career. But he insisted that he was more pleased with the result.

“I always just want to be number one, and to finish ahead of all these good runners, I am just so happy,” said Kiptum, who was surprised at how dominant his performance was.

In fact, he was so far ahead of his competitors that second-placed Wolde did not realise he had only finished second.

“I did not even know the Kenyan guy had won already,” said the 27-year-old Wolde, who hails from Ethiopia. “I only realised when they gave me a medal that said second place and I said ‘what is this?’ I thought I had won.”

Wolde finished with a time of 02:11:11, just one second ahead of countryman Tsegaye Getachew Tadese and three seconds ahead of Kenyan Joel Kemboi Kimurer.

“I thought the fight was between us three, and I thought I won the fight,” Wolde said.

Thetrio take home US$30,000, US$15,000, and US$10,000 respectively – all decided by a few seconds’ difference.

“I am still happy with the result, and it’s not about the money, it’s the challenge,” said Wolde. “Last time I was here, I finished closer to 20th because I got injured. So I told myself, next time I come here I’m going to give a better performance. My dream is to win this race.”

(02/17/2019) Views: 1,505 ⚡AMP
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HONG KONG MARATHON

HONG KONG MARATHON

The Hong Kong Marathon, sponsored by Standard Chartered Bank, is an annual marathon race held in January or February in Hong Kong. In addition to the full marathon, a 10 km run and a half marathon are also held. Around 70,000 runners take part each year across all events. High levels of humidity and a difficult course make finishing times...

more...
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Volha Mazuronak of Belarus blew away the field at the Hong Kong Marathon winning by nearly four minutes

Volha Mazuronak of Belarus finished nearly four minutes ahead of her closest rival clicking 2:26:13 at the Standard Chartered Hong Kong Marathon. Mazuronak also smashed the women’s record of 2:29:37 set by Ethiopia’s Gulume Tollesa last year also claimed the US$10,000 bonus for finishing under 2:28:00.

“I feel really tired. It was a very different course from what I’m used to,” said Mazuronak. “It was very challenging because of the humid air and strong wind, but I am very happy because today I was victorious.

“I really like Hong Kong,” she added. “The food is very good.”

Mazuronak, 29, has a long-distance pedigree, with a best of 2:23.54, a victory in the European women’s marathon in Berlin last year in 2:26.22, and a fourth place in the 2016 London Marathon among her achievements.

Kenya’s Eunice Chebichi Chumba finished second in 2:30:01, and Ethiopia’s Jemila Wortesa came third in 02:32:06.

(02/17/2019) Views: 1,121 ⚡AMP
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High humidity is going to be a challenge for the 74,000 runners at Hong Kong Marathon

Weather forecast says the maximum humidity could reach 95 per cent with temperatures set to reach 21 degrees Celsius (70F).  Experts have warned that high humidity will affect the runners at the Standard Chartered Hong Kong Marathon as the annual distance running showpiece takes to the streets on Sunday morning.

Professor Patrick Yung Shue-hang, a sports medicine expert and chairman of orthopaedics and traumatology at the Chinese University, said the conditions would be difficult for the runners.

“The main worry is the high humidity,” he said. “Coupled with a relatively warm temperature, there may be difficulties in heat dissipation for the runners, and a possibility of higher energy demand, which may result in fatigue, muscle cramp, syncope or even heatstroke.”

The doctor said the participants should wear sports gear that allows good ventilation for heat evaporation and replace fluids regularly during the race because extra energy will be required in the humid conditions.

“Runners should always pay attention to their physical condition. If it gets worse during the race, they better stop and rest,” he said. 

(02/16/2019) Views: 1,542 ⚡AMP
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HONG KONG MARATHON

HONG KONG MARATHON

The Hong Kong Marathon, sponsored by Standard Chartered Bank, is an annual marathon race held in January or February in Hong Kong. In addition to the full marathon, a 10 km run and a half marathon are also held. Around 70,000 runners take part each year across all events. High levels of humidity and a difficult course make finishing times...

more...
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Former Kenyan runner Eunice Chumba now representing Bahrain going for the win at Standard Chartered Hong Kong Marathon

Former Kenyan runner Eunice Chumba hopes changing her allegiance will also change her luck at this weekend’s Standard Chartered Hong Kong Marathon when she races under a Bahrain flag.

The 25-year-old, who won a silver medal in the women’s 10,000 metres at last year’s Asian Games in Jakarta, is one of the favourites in the women’s marathon, at least on paper. She has a personal best time of two hours, 24 minutes and 27 seconds set in the Rotterdam marathon in 2017. And she has intimate knowledge of the Hong Kong course having competed here in 2013 when she finished fifth racing under the Kenyan banner.

“I moved to Bahrain in 2014 and then represented the country in the Asian Games and many other events,” said Chumba. “I know the Hong Kong course is very tough as it goes through tunnels and bridges but we are used to it when we train in Kenya.

“The only worry will be the weather as I know the humidity will be very high on Sunday and therefore I can’t be too aggressive in the race.”

Chumba said she would love to win in Hong Kong for Bahrain but says she won’t target a personal best because of the weather. “I only hope to beat my previous time [2:33] with an improved result this time,” she said.

Her major rival is likely to be Volha Mazuronak of Belarus, who has a personal best of 2:23:54 which she set while finishing fourth at the London Marathon in 2016.

(02/15/2019) Views: 1,590 ⚡AMP
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HONG KONG MARATHON

HONG KONG MARATHON

The Hong Kong Marathon, sponsored by Standard Chartered Bank, is an annual marathon race held in January or February in Hong Kong. In addition to the full marathon, a 10 km run and a half marathon are also held. Around 70,000 runners take part each year across all events. High levels of humidity and a difficult course make finishing times...

more...
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Defending champion 45-year-old Kenneth Mburu Mungara wants to defend his title at Kong Kong marathon this weekend

In the men’s marathon, defending champion Kenneth Mburu Mungara will attempt to make it two in a row – at the age of 45. “Age is absolutely not a problem for me,” said the Kenyan. “I want to win in Hong Kong again or else I won’t be coming back [here].”

Mungara, who will race for the third time in Hong Kong, said because runners have to negotiate “too many corners” it would make it tough for any runner.

The Kenyan runner has a personal best time of 2:07:36 but clocked only 2:13:38 when he won here last year. “The humidity is very bad and all the runners will face difficulties,” he said. “My target is always to do better than last time and I am confident of making it even though I will be a marked man as defending champion.”

2016 Hong Kong champion Mike Kiprotich, also from Kenya, is another medal contender as well as fellow countryman Tuwei Dickson, who won the 2018 Seville Marathon in a time of 2:08:18.

Meanwhile, organisers of the event said about 400 runners from the half-marathon challenge group have requested to move to a slower group after a tougher time limit was set just a week before the event.

(02/15/2019) Views: 1,485 ⚡AMP
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HONG KONG MARATHON

HONG KONG MARATHON

The Hong Kong Marathon, sponsored by Standard Chartered Bank, is an annual marathon race held in January or February in Hong Kong. In addition to the full marathon, a 10 km run and a half marathon are also held. Around 70,000 runners take part each year across all events. High levels of humidity and a difficult course make finishing times...

more...
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Leanne Szeto wants to become the top Hong Kong women’s finisher at the Standard Chartered Half

Leanne Szeto Shiu-yan is ready to put her sports running gear saga behind her as she aims to become the top Hong Kong women’s finisher again in the half marathon in Sunday’s Standard Chartered Marathon.

A prominent triathlete, Szeto received police enquiries after an anonymous complaint was made against her running with a customised sports gear that incorporated the Hong Kong bauhinia during a trail running race in Braemar Hill in mid-January.

Her jersey design could have been in violation of the laws governing the use of the regional flag and emblem. The runner put her story on social media and gained wide support from netizens.

But the 27-year-old, who will be taking part in her third half-marathon race in the annual Hong Kong showpiece, wants put her recent troubles behind her and is fully focused on running a big race over the weekend.

“I won’t use the same gear [with the Hong Kong bauhinia] at the stage as I did not want other people to make it a big thing out of it,” she said at a media function on Wednesday. “Also, the gear manufacturer may not be willing to produce this gear anymore.

“I want to focus on the race on Sunday as this is a big event in Hong Kong. My target is to finish faster than last year.”

She clocked 1:23:29 in the 2018 event which is still her personal best.

(02/13/2019) Views: 1,867 ⚡AMP
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HONG KONG MARATHON

HONG KONG MARATHON

The Hong Kong Marathon, sponsored by Standard Chartered Bank, is an annual marathon race held in January or February in Hong Kong. In addition to the full marathon, a 10 km run and a half marathon are also held. Around 70,000 runners take part each year across all events. High levels of humidity and a difficult course make finishing times...

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Hong Kong Marathon is increasing the size of their field by 4,000 in their 2019 event

The Standard Chartered Hong Kong Marathon will welcome 4,000 more marathon runners in 2019 as organisers seek to foster a long-distance running culture in town. The annual Hong Kong showpiece, which will take place on February 17, will cater to a record 22,500 marathon runners, while the total number of runners will remain at 74,000. “There is always a great demand for the event and most of all we want to develop a culture for marathon running,” said Hong Kong Athletic Association chairman Kwan Kee. “The annual event has been running over 20 years and it’s time we produced more runners in the marathon category.” (08/15/2018) Views: 1,464 ⚡AMP
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44-Year-Old Former Barber Wins Hong Kong Marathon

When Bonsa Dida Direba was born in 1995, Kenneth Mburu Mungara was already 21 years old. But it was experience rather than youth that won the day at the Standard Chartered Hong Kong Marathon Sunday. The 44-year-old Kenyan, a former barber who was only enticed to the sport in his 30s when he cut the hair of other runners, finished in 2:13:38, with Direba just five seconds back. Ethiopia’s Gulume Tollesa defended her title with a course record of 2:29:37. (01/21/2018) Views: 1,159 ⚡AMP
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Belachew will defend his crown at hong kong marathon

Melaku Belachew danced on the finish line after breaking the Standard Chartered Hong Kong Marathon men’s record last year – and we could get to see some more of his moves on Sunday if all goes according to plan for the Ethiopian. “I feel good now, I will win this – again!” he finished the 2017 race in 2:10:31, said as he gave a thumbs-up sign. Belachew was feeling confident. “Yes, I will do it, I will break my course record,” he added. “I think everything will be OK, I am in good condition.” (01/20/2018) Views: 1,051 ⚡AMP
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Belachew and Tollesa aim to retain their titles

Defending Standard Chartered Hong Kong Marathon champions Melaku Belachew and Gulume Tollesa are aiming to win back-to-back titles. The Ethiopian duo were unexpected winners in close races 12 months ago, but on Sunday they will line up for the race with the added weight of expectation. Belachew will be joined by fellow Kenyans Robert Kwambai and Joseph Aperumoi, who have set respective PBs of 2:08:14 and 2:08:26 within the past three months, 2016 Hong Kong winner Mike Mutai. (01/19/2018) Views: 1,190 ⚡AMP
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Zero Yu Hin-wa ready for Hong Kong marathon

Short-distance specialist Zero Yu Hin-wa knows this weekend’s race is another chance to impress the national team coaches. For many, the Standard Chartered Hong Kong Marathon is meant to be a bit of fun or a personal challenge. But for short-distance specialist Zero Yu Hin-wa, the pressure is on in front of watchful eyes. "my aim is to run 1:08:00 or 1:09:00. There’s time to improve and I want to be a Hong Kong representative at this distance,” he says. (01/18/2018) Views: 1,221 ⚡AMP
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