The Royal Parks Foundation Half Marathon has launched a brand new race ballot for what organisers have described as the UK's most beautiful city run. In 2010, public runner places (£45 each) sold out online in just 2 hours and 40 minutes, so this year the Royal Parks Foundation, the charity for London's* Royal Parks, has introduced the ballot to give everyone an equal chance to be at the start line on Sunday 9 October 2011.
The ballot opened for a period of two weeks on www.royalparkshalf.com, on Wednesday, February 16. The ballot closes at 17.00GMT on Wednesday, March 2. Successful entrants will find out if they have been allocated one of the coveted race places by email on Friday, March 4 when the draw takes place.
Sara Lom, Chief Executive of the Royal Parks Foundation comments; "Due to the soaring popularity of the Half Marathon both at home and overseas, we have decided that the fairest way to allocate places is through a ballot. Runners come from all over the UK and 31 countries around the world to take part in this extraordinary sports challenge - to enjoy the beautiful autumn landscapes of The Royal Parks and raise vital funds for charity. The Royal Parks Foundation Half Marathon is simply breathtaking, in every sense of the word!"
The Royal Parks Foundation Half Marathon is one of the most scenic city runs in the world. Starting and finishing in Hyde Park, the beautiful 13.1 mile route races through four of London's stunning Royal Parks (Hyde Park, Kensington Gardens, The Green Park and St James's Park) and offers 12,500 runners magnificent views of some of the capital's most iconic landmarks, including Buckingham Palace, the Houses of Parliament, the London Eye, Marble Arch and the Royal Albert Hall.
Over the last three years, the Royal Parks Foundation Half Marathon has raised £8m for over 200 partner charities, including the Royal Parks Foundation, Mind, Scope and UNICEF. The event is also popular with celebrities. Ben Fogle, Nell McAndrew, Jenni Falconer, Gordon and Tana Ramsay, Tom Aikens, Tessa Sanderson, James Cracknell, Bill Nighy, Charley Boorman, The Saturdays and The Cheeky Girls have all supported in previous years.
Renowned for its carnival atmosphere, race day also features Pulse3K, a race for 11-16 year olds (www.pulse3K.com) and a scrumptious Food & Fitness Festival for 40,000 spectators and supporters. Public race places cost £45. Those wishing to enter the ballot or find out further details should visit www.royalparkshalf.com