The Valencia Half-Marathon presents its most ambitious edition yet, with 14,200 runners ready to set new records
The Valencia-Trinidad Alfonso EDP Half-Marathon this Sunday the 22nd of October is holding its most ambitious edition ever. The rallying cry this year is ‘Run for the Record’ in an event that already has 14,200 entries and a bevy of top athletes battling to beat records on Valencia’s fast circuit.
At the official presentation of the 21-kilometre race in Valencia ‘The Running City’, there was jubilation at the first 2017 record to be broken, with over 14,200 entries for the trial — some 700 runners more than in last year’s edition. There is also a rise in the number of runners from other regions (who now make up 22% of the total) and from abroad (14%). The share of women runners has also risen. At 3,323 participants, they now make up 23% of the total.
The official presentation of the first race to gain the IAAF’s Gold Label in Spain was held at Marina de Empresas [business support centre], next to Spain’s fastest 21,097.5-metre running circuit. Those taking part in the presentation included: Paco Borao, the President of SD Correcaminos [runners’ club], which is organising the Valencia Half-Marathon; Maite Girau, the Councillor for Sport and Health, Valencia City Council; Elena Tejedor, the Director of Fundación Trinidad Alfonso [foundation]; Vicente Tarancón, President of Luanvi [sportswear firm]; other representatives of Valencian clubs and sponsors in the Half-Marathon. The energy company EDP is this year’s official sponsor of the event and the firm Ecoembes is the official collaborator fostering recycling.
Among the speeches made during the presentation, Paco Borao stressed that “This year’s event is the most ambitious yet given the bevy of top athletes who have chosen our trials to build on their worldwide fame. ” He recalled that the world’s fastest male and female runners of the Half-Marathon in 2017 were Abraham Cheroben and Joyciline Jepkosgei, respectively, and that both would be on the start line in Valencia. They will be accompanied by a group of African runners, all of whom have set splendid times. He ended by noting that Valencia had already broken its first record. “We now have over 14,200 entries”, he stressed, adding that “the number of runners rises every year and makes us think about meeting new challenges.”
Everyone’s efforts will ensure the Valencia’s Half-Marathon’s success
Elena Tejedor, Director of Fundación Trinidad Alfonso noted that this will be the sixth year in a row that the foundation has collaborated in the Half-Marathon and stated that it “would continue to working together for many years to come in making the event an even greater success”. She also said that “We want the City of Valencia to take ever greater pride in holding the Half-Marathon”. Tejedor said that she would repeat the gesture of donating €1 for every runner reaching the finishing line to Asociación Esperanza y Sonrisa [child cancer charity]. This year, EDP [energy company] will sponsor the event. EDP has also been the Official Sponsor of the Valencia-Trinidad Alfonso EDP Marathon since 2016. The energy giant also sponsors some of the main races in the Spanish sporting calendar. Over 165,000 people will take part in the trials sponsored by the firm.
Vicente Tarancón, President of Luanvi [Spanish sportswear firm], praised the design of the shirt that will be worn by the 14,200 runners, stating that “The fabric is the same as last year and weighs no more than 90 grams”. He added that the runners would be as pleased with this year’s shirt as they were in other years.
Maite Girau, Councillor for Sport and Health, Valencia City Council , said that “The Valencia Half-Marathon puts our city in the world spotlight”, noting that the run “is the only half-marathon in Spain that has the IAAF Gold Label and this makes the world take special interest in the trial”. The Councillor ended by celebrating the fact that “more women run every year and run greater distances”, noting the greater female presence in this trial.
Emotive homage to Deputy-Inspector Blas Gámez
The most emotive part of the presentation was the homage to Blas Gámez, a Deputy Inspector of the National Police, who was murdered in Valencia a few weeks ago. He was a keen runner and had entered for the trial. His wife, Chus, and his colleagues received his running bib and medal from Paco Borao in memory of his support for the Half-Marathon and his enthusiasm for the sport.