Rain alert for city half marathon

South Wales Echo - - NEWS -

CARDIFF’S big­gest ever half marathon will take place on Sun­day – but the weather isn’t set to play ball.

This year has seen the big­gest ever en­try, with 25,000 sign­ing up for the race which starts out­side Cardiff Cas­tle.

But yes­ter­day, the Met Of­fice is­sued a yel­low “be aware” weather warn­ing of rain for Sun­day and Mon­day. Heavy rain and strong winds are pre­dicted for the 10am start and are ex­pected to con­tinue for the length of the run.

Fore­cast­ers warned many places in western Britain could get 25-50mm of rain with gusts of up to 60mph in ex­posed coastal ar­eas.

De­spite the con­di­tions, top Welsh run­ner Dewi Grif­fiths – who won the Swansea Half Marathon in June – said he was look­ing for­ward to the race.

“It’s such a great at­mo­sphere,” he said. “There is so much sup­port all the way round.

“You get through Cardiff Bay and there’s a huge roar and that gets you through a mile be­fore you even re­alise.

“There there’s an­other big one around eight to nine miles.”

He has been touted as a po­ten­tial first Welsh win­ner but said the pres­sure doesn’t get to him.

“I’m out­side the top 10 in terms of time but you never know, what­ever will be will be. I think I’m in per­sonal best shape so if I get to the end with that, I’ll be happy”.

And he gave tips to run­ners who will be brav­ing the rain.

“Be warm at the start line. You don’t want to be wet be­fore it even starts, a good op­tion is a bin bag so you can just get rid of it as soon as you start.

“Don’t panic about it as there’s noth­ing you can do about it.”

Run 4 Wales chief ex­ec­u­tive Matt New­man said he be­lieves the route is one of the fac­tors for the suc­cess of the half.

“Both the Lon­don Marathon and Great North Run have been around for a lot longer but the ac­tual ex­pe­ri­ence on the day in terms of the route, the beauty of Cardiff as you’re run­ning across the bar­rage for ex­am­ple, is in­cred­i­ble. When we changed the route to in­clude Roath Park Lake, we’ve seen so many peo­ple com­ing out to line the route and it’s be­come a truly iconic event”.

Roads in the city are be­gin­ning to be closed ahead of the event.

Most clo­sures come into force on Sun­day morn­ing, ahead of the main run at 10am.

There are also events tak­ing place tomorrow in the Fes­ti­val of Run­ning, which will in­volve adults, chil­dren and stu­dents.

See tomorrow’s Echo for a map show­ing the road clo­sures and the route for Sun­day’s race.

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