Monday 19 February 2018

Athletics: Dublin Marathon loses sponsor

Cliona Foley

Cliona Foley

DESPITE record participation numbers, the Dublin Marathon has lost its title sponsor -- the An Post National Lottery -- and its television coverage this year.

The Lottery came on board with much fanfare last season, when it brought live television for the first time in 20 years, and it was expected to be involved for two more years.

However, the failure to seal a deal for 2012 has left the October 29 event without a sponsor for the first time since 1992, with no hope of finding a late replacement.

The current National Lottery licence runs out in June 2013 and last month the government took the controversial decision to accept international tenders for it.

Race director Jim Aughney said he did not think this decision was related to the marathon's problem. "We were in talks to agree terms for 2012 almost immediately after last year's event and up to two weeks ago," he said. "It just didn't happen.

"We were optimistic right up to the very last, but we just couldn't agree on a financial package. We had to make a decision on going it alone rather than leaving it hanging any longer."

The loss of sponsorship means that there will not even be television highlights this year.

Organisers are discussing proposed changes to this year's route, one in the Phoenix Park section and one which may see Roebuck Road and Fosters Avenue cut from the late stages.

Irish Independent

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