The 2017 Suva Marathon is billed to attract some renowned international names. With registration in progress, the Fijian Capital City is expected to host the world record holder in marathon participation, Brent Weigner of the US.
This was confirmed yesterday by Suva Marathon Club secretary, Marita Manley.
“It looks as though the Suva Marathon is becoming a destination for those runners who are ticking countries off their marathon lists,” she said.
“This year we will have the world record holder for the person who has run marathons in the most number of countries joining us in Suva. He is Brent Weigner from the US who has run marathons in 132 countries. This weekend he will break that record in his 133rd country. Fiji will be his 135th country and he’s running one in Belarus between one in Madagascar and this one here.”
She said the success of the race had marketed Fiji globally.
“Looking at the list, it looks as though there’s a marketing opportunity with these guys. We had Peter and Yen join us last year (joint 4th ranked) and Richard Holmes (ranked 7th) is joining us this year too.
Jaimie Gosselin, also from the US who is the winner from 2016 is in Fiji currently and she comes to Savusavu every year on holiday.”
Registration for the 2017 Island Chill Suva Marathon on July 22 was launched by Miss Pacific Islands, Anne Dunn at the Morris Hedstrom City Centre (MHCC), Suva, three weeks ago.
“The Suva Marathon Club is hopeful that this year’s registrations for the 2017 Island Chill Suva Marathon will surpass the 1000 mark. At the recent registration drive at MHCC, about 100 runners signed up, many of whom have competed in earlier years. These included some of the event sponsors such as Carpenters and Bank South Pacific, the Reserve Bank and the King’s contestants for this year’s Hibiscus contest.
“We are also seeing a good numbers of overseas entrants — particularly from seasoned marathon runners keen to add another country to their already impressive list of marathons they have run. And we are starting to see good numbers of corporate teams getting out on the seawall training and signing up for the event,” said Manley.
As part of its registration roadshow, the club will be at the Olympic Day Fun Run on Friday June 30, the Oceania Athletics Championships on Friday June 30 and at MHCC on Saturday July 1 to sign runners up. They will also organise a corporate team registration drive in early July to make it easier for businesses to sign up all their teams in one go.
Entries to the marathon 2017 are free for any teams that are members of the services — so teams from the Fiji Police Force, the health service, schools, the army can run free on July 22.