Reg­is­tra­tions open for an­nual run­ning fes­ti­val

Whitsunday Times - - SPORT -

THE Air­lie Beach Run­ning Fes­ti­val is ex­pect­ing big­ger and bet­ter things in 2015, as reg­is­tra­tions go live on­line.

The third in­stal­ment of the an­nual event, which will be held on July 18-19, of­fers the half marathon as part of the North Queens­land se­ries, the Port of Air­lie 10km, the Bal­ance Po­di­a­try 5km, a three-per­son re­lay team race in­cor­po­rated into the main race, the 5km Cor­po­rate Team Chal­lenge as well as the new 2km Sea Star Kidz Fun Run.

The in­jec­tion of ath­letes, and their sup­port crew, has been wel­comed by the ex­ec­u­tive direc­tor of Whit­sun­days Mar­ket­ing and Devel­op­ment Limited, Jeff Aquilina, who called the event, hosted by the Whit­sun­day Run­ning Club, an an­nual high­light on the re­gion’s cal­en­dar.

“The event has proved very popular with both lo­cals and vis­i­tors from nearby and afar, and we are look­ing for­ward to an­other great event in 2015,” he said.

Of the 389 par­tic­i­pants in 2014, 38 per cent were from the Whit­sun­days while 52.8 per cent were in­ter­state com­peti­tors – a num­ber the Whit­sun­day Run­ning Club is hop­ing will in­crease.

Lo­cal tour and ferry op­er­a­tor Cruise Whit­sun­days has shown con­fi­dence in the event by pro­vid­ing ma­jor spon­sor­ship for the sec­ond straight year.

Cruise Whit­sun­days chief ex­ec­u­tive of­fi­cer Nick Hor­tle said the event had clearly shown its po­ten­tial to bring tourists to the area and, as a spon­sor, is also of­fer­ing spe­cial tour deals to en­cour­age at­ten­dees to stay in town longer.

“Since the in­au­gu­ral event in 2013, it has at­tracted a sig­nif­i­cant num­ber of com­peti­tors and spec­ta­tors from out­side the re­gion, giv­ing the whole town an eco­nomic boost,” he said.

“It’s a great event for our com­mu­nity – many of our staff par­tic­i­pated in last year’s event and are look­ing for­ward to be­ing in­volved again with their friends and fam­ily.”

Reg­is­tra­tion is avail­able through www.whit­sun­dayrun­ning­ with a dis­counted rate avail­able un­til May 31.

OFF AND RUN­NING: Air­lie Beach Run­ning Fes­ti­val or­gan­iser Wendy Downes with Cruise Whit­sun­days CEO Nick Hor­tle. Mr Hor­tle and Cruise Whit­sun­days will again be ma­jor spon­sors of the an­nual event.

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