PRESS RELEASE - 3 SEPTEMBER 2021
2020 READING HALF MARATHON AND GREEN PARK CHALLENGE
Following the postponement of the April date to November 1st earlier in the year it is with a heavy heart that race organiser, Goldline Events, today announced that despite everyone’s best efforts they are unable to hold the Reading Half Marathon and Green Park Challenge this year. This has been a very tough decision to make but with the current uncertainty around mass participation events and the restrictions which are likely to still be in place in November it has become more and more apparent that it will not be possible to maintain the integrity of the race and give our runners the overall runner experience on the day which they deserve. The event has always prided itself on delivering a race day experience that is second to none and anything less is simply not acceptable.
Judith Manson, Race Director said “I would like to extend my thanks to everyone involved for their continued support and solidarity, the kind messages we have received from our runners, volunteers, sponsors, charities and partners has been amazing. This has been a very difficult time for everyone and I understand that in particular our runners wanted reassurance from us, which is why we took the tough decision this week with 8 weeks to go.’
Manson added “It is outside of our control to say when large scale events like Reading will be allowed to go ahead, and sadly there is not enough information currently available to allow us to estimate when this will be. The event demands a considerable amount of preparation from everyone involved including our runners. Their preparation and training is as important to us as it is to them, we know they have dedicated hours of training and will be ramping up their training now, with time away from loved ones and planning which could include travel and accommodation. The fact that we can’t give our runners reassurance that the event will go ahead with 8 weeks to go is unfair of us to ask them to continue with their training plans. As well as delivering an unforgettable race our number one priority is always the health and safety of our runners, volunteers, staff, partners and contractors. If we are unable to guarantee everyone’s complete health and safety that is also unacceptable to my team and I.”
Understandably the news today will be very disappointing and upsetting for all involved. Last year runners of the Reading Half Marathon and Green Park Challenge raised hundreds of thousands of pounds for some amazing causes, as well as this Charity fundraising there are lots of individuals, companies and organisations that rely on the event for their livelihood, so this was not a decision which was taken lightly. Plans for the 2021 event will be underway soon with Race Organiser, Goldline Events committed to making 2021 THE BEST celebration possible for everyone involved.
Home to Britain’s finest athletes, first timers and charity fundraisers, the event is proud to cater for all, from youngsters to parents, colleagues to running groups – no matter your age, running ability, this festival is for all. Staring in the beautiful surrounding of Green Park the 13.1 mile course takes in the highlights of the centre of Reading where you will experience huge crowd support but also still passes through the beautiful grounds of the University campus. The race culminates in a finish rarely found outside an Olympic stadium with over 15,000 people cheering you into the stadium and over the finish line.
The 2021 date has been set for Sunday 11th April 2021, however to give the event the best chance of going ahead a second date of Sunday 7th November 2021 has also been agreed with Reading Borough Council. Runners can be reassured that if the event can’t go ahead in April they will automatically be transferred to 7th November 2021.
For more information visit the website www.readinghalfmarathon.com and be sure to follow the official race channels for daily updates and news.