The Cork City Marathon takes place over the June bank holiday. There are four main events throughout the weekend: marathon, half-marathon, team relay and youth relay.
The half-marathon was introduced in 2011 following changes to the course layout in 2010 making it impossible for relay teams to run equal legs of the marathon course due to the course being at its narrowest at the 21/22-mile mark.
The very popular team relay allows runners, joggers and walkers of all ability levels to participate without having to complete the full marathon.
The youth team relay allows second-level students over 16 years of age to participate, with a specific emphasis on targeting transition year students and members of Cork youth clubs.
A team of five is required, with a leader (usually a teacher or youth club leader) being a point of contact for event organisers. As Cork is a hilly city, it is not a straightforward or 'fast' course.
The organisers have designed a route maximising the runners' experience around the city, while minimising disruption to the public. Their aim was to keep as much of the course in the city as possible to allow the public of Cork to engage with proceedings. The suburbs rise to the hills in the north and south, while the centre is low-lying around Washington and Patrick Street. The west provides flat ground at the Lee Valley, while the harbour estuary to the east is also flat.
The marathon takes place on the Monday, shortly after the wheelchair marathon entrants get under way at 9am. The half-marathon kicks off at 10.30.
It begins and finishes on Patrick Street. It makes a single circuit of the city before heading for Blackpool. It takes runners along the Lee, through the Jack Lynch Tunnel to Mahon; it continues short of Blackrock Castle before turning on to the Loughmahon Waterfront walkway. Then runners travel along the old railway lines towards the marina at Old Passage West before proceeding along Centre Park Road and approaching Turner's Cross. The final four miles are flat.
Tel: +353 21 4924170
Date: June 2, 2014
Highs: Running in a city of great tradition and getting a good tour of its most historic sites.
Lows: The hilly nature of the landscape.
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