With nine weeks to go until the 35th annual Gold Coast Airport Marathon the event is well on track to become the biggest in its history.
And it’s highly likely more women than men will hit the flat Gold Coast streets on the 6 and 7 July race weekend.
The program will feature the full 42.195km Gold Coast Airport Marathon, ASICS Half Marathon, Southern Cross University 10km Run, Suncorp Bank 5.7km Challenge and 4km and 2km Junior Dashes.
Since registrations opened in March, entries have been arriving online at the Marathon Gold Coast office in record numbers compared to the corresponding periods in 2012.
This week entries across all events are almost 29 per cent up on the same time last year, when a record 28,000-plus eventually faced the starter across the two days, including a huge 73 per cent from outside the region.
Tourism, Major Events, Small Business and the Commonwealth Games Minister Jann Stuckey said event organisers couldn’t be happier that after 35 years, people are embracing the Gold Coast Airport Marathon weekend to the point it grows consistently year after year.
“I’ve been told that steady participation increases across all events could result in about 30,000 starters all-up this year, and that the ASICS Half Marathon is proving the most popular so far,” Minister Stuckey said.
“The half marathon still provides a distance running experience for those who want to seriously challenge themselves, but may not want to run a full marathon.’’
Event General Manager Cameron Hart said the ASICS Half Marathon has been particularly fast out of the blocks with 38 per cent more registrations, largely thanks to the early enthusiasm of female runners.
“We don’t really know why, but almost twice as many women as men have entered so far for the ASICS Half,” Mr Hart said.
“And females are also on track, literally, to dominate the fields in several of our other events if the current trend continues.
Mr Hart said participants also have the opportunity to dedicate their run and raise funds for the official charity Cancer Council Queensland or for a charity of their choice.
The Gold Coast Airport Marathon is supported by the Queensland Government through Tourism and Events Queensland as part of a growing calendar of sporting, cultural and regional events.
For more information or to enter www.goldcoastmarathon.com.au.
There is an early bird fee until Wednesday 22 May.