Macc race distance to be re-measured
THE Macclesfield Half Marathon is among more than 30 races being re-measured after it was found the device used to calculate the distances was inaccurate.
Routes across the country are measured using a bicycle fitted with a counter to record the distance.
But the Association of UK Course Measurers (AUKCM) has found that the course used to initially calibrate one of the bikes – The Middlewood Way in Macclesfield – was found to be short by 0.5pc, which meant the Greater Manchester Marathon was short by 380m for three years running.
Four more races have been declared too short, with a further 28 – including the Macclesfield Half – yet to be tested.
A AUKCM statement read: “Following a remeasurement after complaints were received both from runners and the run- britain rankings of a short course being used for the Greater Manchester Marathon, a possible contributor to the short course was identified as the calibration course in Middlewood Way which was used to calibrate the bicycle wheel.
“An independent check, by a measurer having calibrated on an alternative calibration course, identified that the Middlewood Way course was short by 0.5pc.
“Accordingly we have identified courses which may have been affected.”
UK Athletics has said it will not recognise times from the three Greater Manchester Marathon races from 2013, 2014 and 2015 due to the blunder.
But Mandy Calvert, Macclesfield Half Marathon race director, said they are confident the Macclesfield route, last measured in 2013, is accurate.
She said: “The Maccles- field Half Marathon committee are aware of the reports of potential errors in the official measurement of some races in the North West and are seeking further clarification on the implications for the Macclesfield Half Marathon and 5K.
“We have never been made aware by runners that the courses have been recorded as short on their GPS traces. However, the committee will be taking appropriate action includ- ing having the courses remeasured, and have every confidence that our races meet all the necessary standards.”
She added: “As the races start and finish on the athletics track we are able to make adjustments to the course length by changing the distance that the runners run on the track at the start and finish of the races, therefore we do not anticipate any major changes to the race routes whatever the outcome.”
●● Last year’s Macclesfield Half Marathon