The Sanlam Cape Town Marathon announced that they have been awarded coveted IAAF Silver Label Road Race status by the sport's governing body on Tuesday (24), the first road race in Africa to be awarded such a high level of classification.
The 2015 edition of the marathon, which was first run in 2007, will be staged on 20 September.
Marathon ambassador and local distance running legend Elana Meyer said: “The Silver Label status puts the Sanlam Cape Town Marathon on the race calendar for the top tier international runners in 2015. We are excited to be planning a spectator orientated event over the Heritage Day weekend.”
“The bar has certainly been raised quite high and as we launch this year’s event, the organisers have set yet another challenge - the IAAF’s Gold Label status for the Sanlam Cape Town Marathon. We are confident that this will also be achieved in no time,” added Carl Roothman, chief executive: retail of title sponsors Sanlam Investments.
A significant milestone has already been reached towards the achievement of the Gold Label status in the near future.
The Sanlam Cape Town Marathon is one of the first sporting events in South Africa to be declared carbon neutral.
Sanlam has played a pivotal role in this process through the purchase of carbon credits traded on a JSE platform using existing commercial and financial infrastructure. The platform and the carbon offset trading were showcased for market readiness at the JSE in January.
“I am proud to be associated with an event that is carbon neutral. The Sanlam Cape Town Marathon endeavours to benchmark itself against leading international City Marathons in order to pioneer and be seen as leaders in sustainability initiatives. The marathon’s three core focus areas are to demonstrate concern for sustainability; to minimise its environmental impact and to maximise engagement of all key stakeholders,” added Meyer, the 1992 Olympic Games 10,000m silver medallist.
Last year’s marathon attracted more than 12,500 runners from 53 countries, including 29 elite runners. It was won by Kenya’s Willy Kibor Koitile in a course record of 2:10:45 and the women's winner, Ethiopia's Meseret Biru, also set a course record of 2:30.57.
Organisers hope that both marks will fall in this year's marathon and have a target of at least 20,000 entries across all the weekend's races.
The Sanlam Cape Town Marathon takes centre-stage on Sunday 20 September but the weekend, with a number of events the day before, also includes a 10km Peace Run, a 4.2km Community Fun Run, and 22km and 11km Peace Trail runs.
The marathon route in particular has been designed to offer runners a view of the city’s natural and cultural attractions from the course.
Organisers for the IAAF