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THE ABP Newport Wales Marathon is returning on Sunday – set to be the largest mass participation event to take place in Wales in 2021.

Eight thousand people have signed up to run the marathon, 10K or family mile races, which were originally scheduled for April 2020.

The race will be a ‘breathable event’ – providing a great event day experience and atmosphere with a focus on responsibility and safety. A number of measures will be in place to help keep people safe and prevent the spread the coronavirus.

Simon Brown, divisional port manager for Wales and South West, at ABP, said: “We are delighted that the ABP Newport Wales Marathon and 10K is returning this year. This event is a fantastic community event. We are really looking forward to the day and wish all participants the very best.”

When are the races?

The event takes place on Sunday, October 24.

The marathon will start at 9am; the 10K at 9.45am and the family mile at 12.30pm.

Where is it happening?

All races will start on Usk Way, Newport, near the University of South Wales Newport City Campus building. The event village is situated in front of the USW building (opposite Friars Walk).

Can I still enter?

Registration is closed and no on-the-day entries will be available.

Where does the marathon race go?

The route for the marathon was devised by double Olympic marathon runner Steve Brace and is one of Europe’s flattest marathons.

It starts and finishes on the river front and takes in the Transporter Bridge and the stunning scenery of the surrounding Gwent Levels. It takes runners towards Magor, where they can expect a carnival atmosphere around the main village square.

Supporters will have the perfect opportunity to catch a glimpse of their loved ones and elite runners in Redwick, before runners head back towards the city centre.

Before a sprint finish along the River Usk, runners will get the chance to take in the coastal wildlife on show at the Gwent Levels and Newport Wetlands – one of the UK’s most popular bird watching sites.

Where does the 10k race go?

It also starts and finishes on Newport’s riverfront, with a flat and fast course passing iconic landmarks including the SDR Bridge and Transporter Bridge.

What is the weather foreacast?

Typically Welsh, with a chance for some light rain showers and a moderate breeze expected. The temperature will be mild.

What is the best way to travel to the race?

With so many participants and spectators travelling to Newport over the race weekend, one of the most reliable, stress-free and cost-effective ways to travel and avoid congestion is by travelling by train in advance of race day and make a weekend of it.

An official Park & Ride service for the race will be in operation, based at the Office of National Statistics which is easily accessible from the M4. It will operate between 6am and 6pm. All spaces are now sold out, but other car parks are available in the city-centre.

Will there be road closures in place?

Some road closures will be in operation to facilitate the safe passage of participants.

What Covid safety measures will be in place?

A full Covid-19 specific risk assessment and operational plan has been put in place in recognition of the continued risk of transmission and the responsibilities of event organisers to minimise risk.

The event venue has been redesigned with additional space created throughout and the size of start pens significantly increased to allow participants to create space between themselves and others.

Staff, suppliers and event officials will wear face coverings when close to others and runners will be encouraged to wear them in crowded areas.

A dedicated cleansing team will regularly clean touch points throughout the event site including toilets, door handles, barriers, drink stations and pen entry points – with hand sanitiser points provided for runners across the event.

Volunteers on water stations will be wearing gloves and passing sealed bottles to runners.

Runners will be asked to limit the number of spectators they bring along to the event, with those who do attend encouraged to avoid busy areas around the start and finish line.

Is there an elite race?

Dewi Griffiths (28:37) Paulos Surafel (29:16) and Hannah Alderson (35:01) will head the fields for the 10K.

Adam Bowden (debut), Ollie Garrod (2:25:32), Robert Laing (2:27:17) Jill Collett (2:47:38), Melissah Gibson (2:51:32) and Emma Navesey (2:54:32) are favourites in the marathon.

Will there be atmosphere around the route?

Although runners are being asked to limit the number of spectators they bring to the event, there will still be a fantastic atmosphere around the route with a number of course entertainment stations.

Dedicated course entertainment points will offer musical encouragement to runners, at various points along the route.

These include Samba Galez; The Offshoots; Tune Trucks and Wonderbrass. There will also be PAs playing music at water stations in Goldcliff, Nash Road and Redwick.

Will money be raised for charity?

NSPCC is the lead charity of the event and has 100 fundraisers signed up across the marathon and 10K. There will be a number of other charities and good causes represented.

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Will it be on TV?

The race will be televised around the world. A one-hour Welsh language programme will be broadcast on S4C on October 29 at 8pm and will also be available to view via the BBC iPlayer.

A 30-minute English language programme will also be produced, broadcast from December via a number of channels and steaming services.

Who are the event partners?

Associated British Ports, Welsh Government and Newport City Council. Other partners include Healthspan, the University of South Wales, Monmouthshire Building Society, Capitol Seat and Skoda, the Office for National Statistics, Friars Walk Newport, Tata Steel, Brecon Carreg and ICC Wales.

Can you track runners around the race?

The Run 4 Wales App on iOS and Android can be used to inspect the route pre-race and live track participants on the day with full Google maps functionality.

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