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New Headline Charity Partner Announced

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Front Runner Events is excited to announce that 2Wish, the All Wales charity that provides bereavement support for those affected by sudden death in young people, will become the headline partner for the Great Welsh Marathon and Half Marathon.

The event, now officially titled the 2Wish Great Welsh Marathon Events, will take place on Sunday 2 April 2023 in the beautiful Pembrey Country Park.

David Martin-Jewell, Managing Director of Front Runner Events said:

“We are thrilled that 2Wish has joined us as our headline partner for our Great Welsh Marathon events. 2Wish is an incredible charity that does amazing things. We have been working with them for several years as they provide welfare support across our events. 

“The team behind 2Wish, under the stewardship and guidance of Rhian, provide a vital service and role across all of Wales to those who need it most. I believe the partnership is the perfect fit for so many reasons, and we are keen to raise awareness, increase its profile, and help 2Wish achieve its fundraising goals. I am very excited about some of the ideas that will develop from this relationship by working alongside Rhian and her team.”

2Wish was established by Rhian Mannings MBE after the sudden death of her one-year-old son and husband in 2012, motivated by a desire to ensure others would not be left without support after suddenly losing a child.

Rhian Mannings MBE, Chief Executive and founder of 2Wish, said:

“In the ten years since 2Wish has been established, we have been supported by hundreds of runners raising money for our charity, as well as us supporting at running events from a wellbeing and welfare perspective – which is why this partnership with The Great Welsh Marathon is perfect for us as a charity.  

“The Great Welsh Marathon and Half Marathon is an excellent opportunity for our supporters to take on a challenge they may not have believed possible, whilst raising some much-needed funds for our charity. I know from my own experience of running the London Marathon as a novice, how rewarding yet tough it can be.

“Taking on a personal marathon or half marathon challenge and raising funds for 2Wish is an amazing way to help us be there for even more suddenly bereaved families across Wales.”

Entry to both the Marathon and Half Marathon is now OPEN. What’s more, the fundraising team at 2Wish will be there to offer support to participants wishing to make the most of their fundraising efforts. To get your place at the 2Wish Great Welsh Marathon Events go to: https://www.greatwelshmarathon.co.uk  For more information about 2Wish go to: https://www.2wish.org.uk 

The Great Welsh Marathon Returns With A Bang After a 1092 Day Absence

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It was the first event of the year for the team at Wales’ largest independent mass participant running organisation and what an event it was! With near perfect running conditions on the day, it was hailed a great success, with both male records smashed in the marathon and half marathon events by Cardiff Triathlete, Oliver Webb and Swansea Harrier, Dewi Griffiths.

Oliver Webb Male Winner of the Great Welsh Marathon

Dewi Griffiths Male Winner of the Great Welsh Half Marathon

 

Today was the first time the event has been held since 2019 and after a 1092-day absence. Organisers were delighted to be able to stage it today at the incredible Pembrey Country Park. Tash Smith, Race Director said:

“It felt great to be back doing what we do best! It’s been a long time for us waiting in anticipation for this event and despite this being one of our smaller races it is definitely one of my favourites! Our volunteers pulled together fantastically after such a long time away from delivering this event and I’m proud to say they were brilliant. I can’t wait to see what the rest of the year brings for our team, and I look forward to staging this again in 2023.”

In addition to the course records being broken, there were hundreds of PB’s reported at this fast and friendly race. Runners enjoyed a fantastic route that offered the very best of coast and country, with miles of beach and woodlands that seemed to set them on their way to hitting their best times.

Emma Wookey Female Winner of Great Welsh Marathon

Kelly Bowen Female Winner of the Great Welsh Half Marathon

 

The provisional results from the event were:

Marathon:

Male Female
Oliver Webb (Cardiff Triathlon) 2:39:09 Emma Wookey (Lliwswerry Runners) 3:10:26
David Craig (Les Croupiers) 2:43:52 Celia Boothman 3:12:33
Michael Bryant (Swansea Harriers) 2:43:52 Poppy Tanner (Hardley Runners) 3:12:47

Half Marathon

Male Female
Dewi Griffiths (Swansea Harriers) 1:08:11 Kelly Bowen (Crofty Ambrey RC) 1:29:21
Dean Summers 1:17:31 Lou Summers (Torfaen Runners) 1:31:47
Jordan Figoni 1:17:53 Claire Phillips (Port Talbot Harriers) 1:32:12

The event also attracted several international runners in both distance races from the USA, France, Zimbabwe, Sweden, Ireland and Finland. One lady runner from Finland explained that this event was part of her personal ambition to complete the alphabet of running events and she was pleased to finally add Wales to her bucket list!

David Martin-Jewell, Managing Director at Front Runner Events added:

“Today was a brilliant event to kick off our season for 2022. It feels fantastic to be delivering races once again for our running community. Events like ours have been sorely missed by athletes and fun runners alike. It’s a time when everyone can come together to achieve something very special, and I feel honoured to be part of it. I am excited to be adding to our calendar of events this season and I look forward to delivering our next event at Swansea in June.”  

Entry to the event in 2023 is already open and runners will be excited to know that organisers have a Race Month Special where entry starts at just £28 for the half marathon and £33 for the full distance. Entry will rise on the 1st of May so make sure you get your place to #RunCymru in 2023 today, just head to: https://www.greatwelshmarathon.co.uk  To stay ahead of race day pictures and more, like the Facebook page: www.facebook.com/GreatWelshMarathon or follow @WelshMarathon #RunCymru #BeYourBest on Twitter.

Front Runner Team

Great Welsh Marathon and Half Marathon

Everything You Need To Know About The Great Welsh Marathon & Half Marathon

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The marathon season has begun and athletes from across the UK are getting ready to take on the longest-running marathon event in South Wales. The Great Welsh Marathon and Half Marathon will be taking place this Sunday (10th April) from the top Carmarthenshire visitor attraction Pembrey Country Park, starting at 9am and 9.30am respectively.

Participants will experience a fantastic event that offers the very best of coast and country, with miles of beach and woodlands to enjoy as they #RunCymru. The race is expected to host a relatively small field of runners of up to 1,500 participants, making it one of the friendliest races around!

The race is organised by the Front Runner Events team and delivered with the help of crew members and volunteer race makers. David Martin-Jewell, Managing Director said:

“We are thrilled to be staging the 2022 edition of the Great Welsh Marathon & Half Marathon. This will be first time we have been able to hold this event since 2019, 1092 days since it was last staged. Operationally, it has been a very difficult couple of years and although we were able to deliver a virtual event for the last two years, we very much look forward to bringing back this brilliant event for our running community!”

Key Race Day Timings:

  • 07:30: Car Park, Race Village, Baggage Tent and Information Point Open
  • 08:30: Runners MUST be parked & heading to start area
  • 08:50: Road closure commences & bag drop closes
  • 09:00: Great Welsh Marathon Race Starts
  • 09:30: Great Welsh Half Marathon Race Starts
  • 10:42: Winner of the Great Welsh Half Marathon Expected
  • 11:15: Half Marathon winners presentation takes place
  • 11:28: Winner of the Great Welsh Marathon Expected
  • 12:00: Full Marathon winners presentation takes place
  • 15:00: The last finisher expected
  • 15:30: Event Closes

Tash Smith, Event Manager and Race Director added:

“We are incredibly grateful to all our race makers who volunteer their time to help deliver an amazing experience for our runners. I look forward to seeing all our runners and volunteers on race day for what will be an incredible day from start to finish!”

Anyone who would like to volunteer at any of the Front Runner Events can register their interest by emailing: volunteers@frontrunnerevents.co.uk and the team will be in touch to let you know what roles are available.

Organisers have also produced a Race Day Guide that features all your need-to-know information about the event, including safety notes, car parking and race day information. To download your copy, find further event details CLICK HERE.

Anyone wanting to follow your loved one on the route can do so via our app where you’ll find Live Race Tracking. Just head to the app or play store and look for Front Runner Events.  To stay ahead of all the news as it happens, like the Facebook page: www.facebook.com/GreatWelshMarathon or follow @WelshMarathon #RunCymru #BeYourBest on Twitter. Entry is expected to open for the 2023 Great Welsh Marathon | Half Marathon on race day so make sure you snap up your Early Bird Entry or check out their other events here: https://www.frontrunnerevents.co.uk

Great Welsh Marathon and Half Marathon 2021: POSTPONED – COVID-19 update

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We’re sad to announce that we have postponed our event on 11th April 2021. We were hopeful that we could still hold the event, but our hands are tied. Following Friday’s First Minister’s update, confirming Wales will remain in lockdown for at least another 3 weeks, it’s no longer possible for us to continue with the planning for the Great Welsh Marathon races.

Our events need months of planning, involving many contractors, suppliers and volunteers so we must remain sensible, no matter how much we want to deliver the event. The health and safety of our runners, and the wider public remains at the forefront of our plans and decisions.

Whilst we have clearly been aware and monitoring the situation over recent weeks and months, this virus is unpredictable and with new variants of coronavirus spreading we cannot safely plan this year’s Great Welsh Marathon and Half Marathon. We want you to know that we strive to create and deliver events for you, and we want to welcome you to our start line. Like you, we’re runners – and we deeply share your frustrations.

There is a glimmer of hope on the horizon with the roll out of the vaccine. We remain optimistic that we, as a society, have turned the corner, and can look forward to returning to start lines when it’s safe to do so.

All entrants have been emailed with information regarding their options.

We thank you for your patience, trust and understanding.

David Martin-Jewell, Race Director
Front Runner Events Limited

Front Runner Events Announces Postponement of the Great Welsh Full & Half Marathon 2020

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Since the start of 2020, Front Runner Events have continually been monitoring the situation surrounding the COVID-19 outbreak and we are saddened to announce the postponement of the 2020 Great Welsh Full & Half Marathon.

Race Director, David Martin-Jewell said:

“Following the ongoing advice from Welsh Government and other relevant authorities across the UK, we are devastated that we have had to move this event to 2021.

2020 has proven to be an extremely challenging year, not just us at Front Runner Events but the events industry as a whole. We held out high hopes that we would be able to hold this event in September, however, it has become increasingly evident that social distancing, specific safety requirements amongst other measures, we have no other options other than to move the event to April 2021.

This has been an extremely difficult decision here for all of us at Front Runner Events, we love preparing and delivering our events as well as welcoming old and new runners and friends to west Wales to celebrate a day that culminates in crossing the finish line after months of training and anticipation. We were also looking forward to launching our new route for you all to explore. However, the health and safety of our runners, spectators, volunteers, contractors, event staff and the wider population has to remain to be our highest priority.” 

We fully understand that you will be disappointed with this decision, but we are also aware that this will no longer come as a surprise. As such, we have put together a number of options to help you choose what suits you best.  From 5pm on Wednesday 24th June 2020, you will be able to tell us which of the following options you would like to take. To do this you’ll need to login to your Realbuzz Members Hub and select your choice.

You must select your option by the end of the day on Sunday 27th September 2020, after this deadline, we will automatically add your entry to 2021.

Please note, if you have already run the virtual event or deferred your entry to 2021, you will NOT be able to amend your option to another one.

Your Options:

1. Run in 2021

If you can join us on 11th April 2021 (TBC) select this option in the Realbuzz Members Hub and we’ll do the rest. We look forward to seeing you on the start line. We will automatically transfer your entry to the new race date and we will send you your race pack a few weeks before the event.

2. Transfer your entry to someone else

We’re happy for you to transfer your entry to another runner (all fees have been scrapped due to the circumstances).  To do this, log into your Realbuzz Members Hub  and select the option for transfer. You will then get an email with details on how to transfer your entry to another runner. Please note, you’ll need to do this by Sunday 27th September 2020. Please be aware that by transferring your number, you won’t be able to get a refund.

3. Run the race virtually (solo)

If you choose to run solo at a time and place that suits you then select the virtual event option in the Realbuzz Members Hub and we’ll let you know how to confirm your registration via email. Please note, this option is exclusively for entrants of the 2020 Great Welsh events and will NOT be available to the general public. So, if you want to put your training to good use, see your name on our leader board, a digital certificate, and receive your event t-shirt and medal delivered straight to your door then choose this option. This option will be in lieu of deferral to 2021.

4. Roll your entry onto 2022

If the date in 2021 doesn’t suit you, we can allow you to defer your place to our 2022 race (date TBC). There will be NO fees for deferring your place under the circumstances. If you’d like to defer to 2022, please head to the Realbuzz Members Hub and select this option.

You must select your option by the end of the day on Sunday 27th September 2020. If you do not select an option by this deadline, we will automatically add your entry to 2021.

If you have already run the virtual event or deferred your entry to 2021, you will NOT be able to amend your option to another one.

Refunds

As explained when we originally when we postponed the event, significant event costs have already been incurred and from our endeavouring to try and deliver the September date, we continued to incur costs, therefore we are unable to refund the entry fee.

We did have event insurance, unfortunately, our policy does not cover the COVID-19 or any similar pandemic outbreak. This seems to be standard across the industry and is an area we are actively reviewing for future events.

We don’t like to lean on our terms and conditions, but they’re in place for extenuating situations like this. Events beyond our control were included in the terms you agreed to when you signed up to enter the race/s.

We endeavour to always do our best for our athletes, staff, crew, partners, volunteers and spectators. We kindly ask for your support and understanding at this time to protect everyone involved and the future of Front Runner Events, to continue delivering races for our runners in the years ahead.

Virtual Races Hit New Highs!

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The team at Front Runner Events were quick to turn the tables on their event that which was due to take place earlier this month in the beautiful Pembrey Country Park.  As every runner knows there is nothing like the real event, lining up at the start with every other runner who has trained incredibly hard for the race ahead.  But, with races being postponed and in some cases being cancelled, this has left organisers and runners feeling disappointed.  That is the reason why the Front Runner team felt it was important to offer their runners a tangible goal by introducing the Great Welsh Marathon and Half Marathon virtual races.

David Martin-Jewell said:

            “We are excited to be seeing runners from all over the World taking part in our virtual races in their respective neighbourhoods.  This is the first time we have launched a virtual race and we are pleased to be able to provide this platform, helping runners maintain their fitness, set goals and achieve their targets.  So far, we have seen nearly 500 runners take part, some of whom may prefer to run on their own and not have the added pressure of others around them chasing PB’s.”

            “I’ve learnt over the last few weeks that running is not all about achieving times, sometimes we just need to enjoy the nature, sounds and appreciate everything around us, so I’m delighted we can offer this race for everyone.”

If you would like to register and #RunCymru wherever you live, you can sign up for the virtual race and choose between the half marathon or marathon distance here:  https://www.greatwelshmarathon.co.uk/join-great-welsh-virtual-races/  You’ll need to hurry, as entry will only remain open until 30th April, but to help, we’ve made the process is simple:

1. Register your place – £15 (entry includes a finisher t-shirt, bespoke medal & certificate)

2. Complete the distance before 30/04/2020

3. Submit your Strava, Garmin, GPS data (to your members hub when you signed up – this must show your name, the exact distance, route, time and date)

Once certified, you will receive your goodies in the post, but you can expect to see your name on the leader boards (for either the half or full marathon) and get your virtual finisher’s certificate.  Why not make your marathon miles go further and help Save the UK’s Charities?  To take part in this fantastic fund raiser head to: https://www.twopointsixchallenge.co.uk/ to find out more!

Don’t forget to check out our TIPS on running responsibly and maintaining social distancing measures whilst exercising outdoors!  

How To Train & Run A Half Marathon Safely – #runresponsibly

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As difficult as the situation is that we currently find ourselves in, we all want something to set our sights on and take our minds off what’s going on in the World around us.  We all know how important staying active, healthy and fit is and running is a great way to do this for our minds and body, so we would like to continue to provide goals for our runners whilst maintaining current governmental and public health advice.

The good news is that if you are new or returning to running after some time off, training for a half-marathon is manageable even for the busiest of us!  So why not use this time to ensure you make the most of your exercise once a day and get yourselves running.

The half marathon is the perfect distance for beginners and for the more experienced, wanting to achieve that sense of accomplishment.  That is why we at Front Runner Events were keen to establish the JCP Swansea Half MarathonLlanelli Half Marathon and Great Welsh Half.  Thankfully, our first race of the year took place before COVID-19 hit the UK, however we have had to postpone the remaining two and offer a virtual race as an option.

Now, if you can manage two to three miles at a time, starting off with walk-run-walk, a couple of times per week, you can get into half-marathon shape in 12 weeks providing you stick to a plan.  To help, we have put together a variety of plans to suit all levels of ability, so we’re sure you’ll find one to suit you!  To find your plan go to: https://bit.ly/2zmewO1

You will need to bear in mind that you should add a weekend run that is a slightly longer distance once you feel confident to do so.  Once you gain momentum you will be running—four to five miles in no time, then you can gradually build up to,7, 8, 9 or 10 miles over the course of the 12 weeks.

The best thing about a half marathon is that the training is usually lifestyle friendly that includes a few days of running or jogging, a couple days of cross-training, and a couple days of rest will get you into shape.  Here are a few TIPS to make sure you train responsibly during this time:

  • Run in your local area – starting from home (don’t drive).
  • Run alone or only with household members.
  • Greet fellow runners with a wave rather than calling out.
  • Run with your phone in case you need to call for help.
  • Think about when & where you will run – avoid gatherings, use wide lanes or spaces which are likely to be quieter.
  • Be aware of your surroundings – If you are approaching people slow down and maintain at least 2 metres distance (plan your pass – let them you know you are there, go around them, cross over etc).
  • Wear hi-vis gear if you have it so you stand out (particularly around dawn or dusk).
  • Try and wear a buff and gloves if possible.
  • Wash or shower as soon as you return home.
  • Be sensible, stay safe!

To find alternative or additional challenges our training partners at realbuzz.com have some great ideas to mix up your running.  To find out more and how you can make the most of your training head to their pages here.

2.6 Challenge

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With the postponement of our own Great Welsh Marathon and JCP Swansea Half Marathon following the same path as thousands of other events across the UK being postponed due to the Coronavirus/COVID-19 pandemic, this is having a destructive impact on the UK Charity sector that could result in many being forced to close. We are proud of our work with all of our charity partners who do so much good on both a local and national level. It is now our turn to give back and help the charities.

The National Council for Voluntary Organisations (NCVO) CEO Karl Wilding estimates that the UK charity sector will lose £4 billion in income as a result of the pandemic.

Front Runner Events is working alongside some of the biggest mass participation event organisers to assist with the 2.6 Challenge and Save the UK’s Charities. But we cannot do it alone, we need your help!

Launching on 26th April, on what should have been the date of the 40th edition of the London Marathon – The 2.6 Challenge involves dreaming up a challenge based around the numbers 2.6 or 26 and fundraising or donating to Save the UK’s Charities. It’s open to anyone of any age – the only requirement is that the activity follows Government guidelines on exercising and social distancing!

If fundraising dries up during this lockdown period, many of our most valued charities may not survive. Join us with your own 2.6 Challenge or simply donate to the cause and help us ensure the most vulnerable members of our society continue to have somewhere to turn during this crisis.

To find out more about how you can join in head here.

WHAT IS INVOLVED – Your challenge can be anything that works for you!

Run, walk or cycle 2.6 miles, 2.6km or for 26 minutes. You could do the same in your home or garden, go up and down the stairs 26 times, juggle for 2.6 minutes, do a 26 minute exercise class or 26 keepie-ups – anything you like.

Join The Great Welsh Virtual Races

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With the Great Welsh Full & Half Marathons postponed until Sunday 27th September, we know that some of you may not be able to join us. We also know that some of you will want to put all of your training to use now and run the distance you’ve signed up for.

As such, we’ve set up a virtual race for you to get out and #RunCymru now, wherever you may be. Take part in the Great Welsh Virtual Full or Half Marathon now and still receive your race medal and t-shirt.

If you were already registered to #RunCymru just follow these simple steps:

Not registered to #RunCymru? Don’t worry you can still join us in our virtual race, just follow these simple steps:

We will issue the race medal & tee as soon as we can, but please bear in mind the current climate which may delay us sending them out.

This is intended to be a solo run, please avoid running in large groups when completing this challenge, stick to the recommended advice from your respective Government re: social distancing. By completing this race virtually, you will NOT be able to take part in the rearranged race on September 27th 2020. 

Home Workouts for Runners

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With all the news around COVID-19 some of you runners may feel nervous about heading outside.  We all know there’s nothing better than running with friends but it may not be right for your individual circumstances, so we’ve got some useful ideas of home workouts thanks to our training partners realbuzz.com. Try the following exercises, mix it up with some strength circuits or even use a video tutorial on YouTube – there are so many to choose from, you’ll be spoilt for choice!  But don’t forget to listen to your body, don’t overdo it and drink plenty of water when training at home!

Tabata circuit

Tabata training is a form of high intensity interval training (HIIT) that is based on 4 minute blocks. It’s a fantastic and time effective way to work on both your aerobic and anaerobic energy systems. However, there is a catch; this type of training isn’t for the faint hearted. You need to push yourself hard and not simply ‘go through the motions’ if you want to reap the benefits.

Each exercise in the circuit lasts for 4 minutes and is split into the following format:

  • Work for 20 seconds
  • Rest for 10 seconds
  • Repeat 8 times
  • Take 1 minute of rest between each different exercise.

You can even download a Tabata training timer for your phone or iPad that keeps track of time for you.  Try the following routine for a workout that will leave you feeling the burn.

Step ups

Step up onto a box, whilst, maintaining a good posture, chest up and shoulders back. Step down using the same leading leg. Alternate legs and repeat.

Mountain climber

Start in a straight arm plank position. Alternate bending your knees and bringing them forward as close to your hands as possible. Focus on keeping your back flat throughout the movement.

Burpees

Start by standing with your feet shoulder-width apart. Drop down into a ‘push-up’ position. Push back up and jump into a squat position. Jump with as much energy as you can into the air, raising your hands above your head to complete one rep. On landing, start the next rep straight away.

Side plank

Lie on your side with your legs straight and your ankles together. Prop your torso up with your upper arm. Lift your hips upward until your body forms a straight line from your ankles to your neck. Alternate sides for each 20 second block.

Reverse lunge

Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart. Step one foot back directly behind your body. Bend both knees to drop into a single leg squat position. Return to the starting position and alternate legs.

Russian Twists

Sit leaning back slightly with both knees bent and your feet elevated so that you assume a ‘V position’. Hold a weighted object with both hands. (If you don’t have any dumbbells or weighted plates at home then a large bag of rice will do). Keeping your hips facing forward and your trunk fixed, rotate your upper body and weighted object to each side, turning your head as you twist.