May's Richmond Marathon postponed
Richmond RUNFEST's marathon plans may have been disrupted but an additional Kew Gardens 10K will be held instead
Organisers of Richmond Marathon have had to postpone their headline race next month after a delay in receiving council permission. Instead, they will now put on two different 10K races on 15/16 May, both held entirely inside Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.
Richmond RUNFEST already has the experience of safely hosting two 10K races on 12/13 September last year, with 3,514 finishers in a fully Covid-secure setting within the world-famous Kew Gardens. The fastest times from that weekend's double-header were set by Seyfu Jamaal (London Heathside, 30:14 PB) and GB international and 2019 Richmond RUNFEST Half Marathon champion Tracy Barlow (Thames Valley Harriers, 34:54).
The organisers were also chosen to host the British Olympic Marathon Trial last month, held on multi-lap courses inside the spectacular venue (pictured above). Following that success, the team was confident the Richmond Marathon would go ahead due to the return of running events at the end of March. However, they ran out of time waiting for permission from the local authorities.
One positive is that these permissions do not affect the AIR:10K run they had been planning to put on inside Kew Gardens the day before Richmond Marathon. This has led to the decision to offer a second Kew Gardens 10K race on Sunday 16 May, to provide a full race weekend.
Tom Bedford, race director, said: “It takes a lot of time and organisation to put on a marathon, and postponing the event any closer to race day could bankrupt us after the year we have had. It is sad for runners and charity fundraisers who have put so much time and effort during this testing winter, but we will find another date for the event and hopefully soon. All is not lost as we have permission to put on a socially distanced 10K all inside Covid-secure Kew Gardens”.
Friends and families may not be able to watch runners during the run but they get free entry into Kew Gardens after the event, so runners can talk them through it over a coffee and cake. Each Kew Gardens 10K entry includes two FREE adult and two children's tickets into Kew Gardens (before 12pm) along with a fantastic medal and tech T-shirt.
Entries for the AIR:10K (Audio Inspired Running) are almost full but newly released tickets for the Sunday Kew Gardens 10K are available now at the Richmond RUNFEST website
Richmond RUNFEST 2021 is expected to go ahead with a full programme on 11-12 September.
Image: British Olympic Marathon Trial 2021 by Geoff Lowe Photography