Organisers of the Edinburgh Marathon Festival have announced an early September date for their rescheduled event.
EMF 2020 will now be held over the weekend of 5/6 September. The big event will launch the first of what looks to be two of the busiest months ever in the Scottish racing calendar, with organisers scrambling to fit their postponed events in before the end of the year.
In a statement on Friday announcing their decision to move away from their 23/24 May date, Neil Kilgour, Edinburgh Marathon’s race director said: “We are devastated to have to make this decision but we believe that this course of action is in the best interests of our participants, our affiliate charities, the event team who deliver the event and the emergency services who support the event.”
In choosing a new date for the Festival, organisers said today that "the importance of selecting a date that would allow participants an appropriate timeline to successfully alter their training programme and travel itinerary has been paramount".
While undoubtedly true, the flurry of rescheduled events now falling into September and October is causing many runners – especially marathoners in search of their six stars – to have to make some tough choices.
On Friday, London Marathon was rescheduled to a date one week after another world Abbott World Major, Berlin. The new date – Sunday, 5 October – also happens to be the date of Loch Ness Marathon.
Other spring events around Scotland have also been rescheduled, including Inverurie’s Run Garioch
, due to be held in a fortnight’s time but now moved to Sunday, 13 September. Many new events have been cancelled altogether, including Dunbar Running Club’s new multi-terrain half.
Recognising that the new festival date will not suit everyone, EMF organisers have reopened entries to the 2020 event and have extended the entry transfer period until 5pm on Friday, 31 July.
After announcing the new date today, Kilgour said: “We are grateful that an alternative date has been secured for the event and we want to thank those who have been part of making this happen.
“Edinburgh Marathon Festival is a beacon of positivity, at a time when it is needed most. It gives people the opportunity to focus on what comes beyond the concerns and uncertainty of the coming weeks, to know that it will pass, and that they still have the opportunity to achieve something truly great.
“2020 does not need to be defined by the virus, it can remain defined by our participants as a year of personal triumph.”