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The Valencia Half Marathon and Marathon sets the goal of seeing everyone who has a bib run in 2021

27 May, 2021

The Valencia Half Marathon and Valencia Marathon Trinidad Alfonso EDP will be held on their planned dates in 2021, 24 October and 5 December, respectively, adapting to the circumstances required by the health situation. This has been the decision taken by the race organisers, SD Correcaminos and Valencia City Council, and this was also requested by the 13,000 runners who took part in the survey that was sent to all those registered for 2021.

The results were presented at a press conference in which a roadmap for the races over the coming months was also explained and in which the race director and president of SD Correcaminos, Paco Borao, sent a message of optimism. “In 2020 it was a question of surviving, in 2021 we want to stand firm and in 2022 we want to win back the runners who are unable to come this year and in 2023 we want to return to the path of growth that we have been on. We have a commitment to the runners who trusted us and we are working for them”.

For his part, SD Correcaminos Manager, Juan Botella, dissected the figures from the survey which highlight that 76.10% of those enrolled in the marathon and 69.98% in the half marathon intend to run the race. “Our goal is to see everyone who has a bib running right now and they have confirmed they want to participate in 2021. And anyone who does not want or cannot participate this year, will be able to get their registration fee refunded”, he said. This option will be available from 7 June for a limited period of time. 

It was announced that there will be a waiting list to accommodate runners who have preferential registration, who, if there are people who withdraw, will be the first to get a bib. “We will continue to take care of the runners as always: attending to their wishes and letting them choose whether they want to run or get their money back”, he added. Registration will not be open to the general public until the organisers better understand the needs of the event.

A total of 74.98% of respondents in the 42K and 70.30% in the 21K said they would not participate if taking a PCR test 72 hours before the race was mandatory, a figure that is slightly lower (64.14% in the marathon and 61.69% in the half marathon) if we are talking about an antigen test. Opinions are divided on the requirement to be vaccinated to be able to run, with support from 49.50% and 52.52% in the marathon and half marathon, respectively. “We will work with Sanitat and the authorities to establish the measures required to hold the race safely. The race will adapt to the circumstances dictated by the situation in December, but it will remain a great race with fast times and, above all, with the cheering crowds we lacked in 2020”.

According to the perception of most runners, fun runs are not high risk events. A full 59.4% believe they are safe if the necessary safety measures are taken and 28.40% that they will be safe in the autumn due to the progress in vaccination. Only 12.26% of respondents consider that they are not safe, despite the vaccine. For the director of the Trinidad Alfonso Foundation, Juan Miguel Gómez, ”participants and spectators are needed at sporting events in order for sport to return to normality and for events to continue to have sponsors in order to be profitable and, as is the case for these two races, to be a source of income for the city”.

Equally, the Valencia City Council councillor for sports, Pilar Bernabé, stressed the need to hold events and that València has proven to be a safe destination: “Our intention is to be able to celebrate the Half Marathon and Marathon this year with full participation where all the people who want to run can run. This is our intention, but what we must be clear about, as has been the case so far, is that everything will depend on the epidemiological situation and that will always be the priority. The health management measures taken and the responsibility shown by all Valencian citizens has made the Valencian Community the region with the lowest incidence not only in Spain, but also in Europe. An enormous effort has been made that cannot be wasted. Vaccination is progressing at a good pace, there are months left before these two races will be held, everything seems to indicate that we will be in optimal condition to hold them, but it will be, as I said, the epidemiological situation that will determine whether or not they go ahead. Valencia is the city of Running, we will always be committed to our Marathon”.

Wide sample of runners

A total of 13,609 runners from both races responded to the survey the organisers sent to participants in April and May, 22nd April to 2 May in the case of the 42K and 12 to 16 May for the 21K, asking them about their intentions to participate in 2021, the conditions under which they would like to do so, and their perceptions in this year marked by the pandemic. Specifically, 5,090 participants in the half marathon and 8,589 in the marathon gave their opinion.

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