The organiser of the Magee Donegal Wild Atlantic Marathon and Half Marathon, which take place on Sunday, July 8th, is expecting a combined entry of around 1,000 people.
Looking ahead to the inaugural staging of the event, Eunan Quinn of Excel Sports, revealed this week that over 400 have already registered.
“The interest locally, regionally, nationally and internationally has been phenomenal,” Eunan said.
“To have people from all corners of the world signing up for for what has been labelled the most scenic marathon in the world is really pleasing.
“Runners are going to travel from different parts of the globe with their families to visit Donegal and enjoy the experience that is the Donegal’s South West Wild Atlantic Way Coastline,” he added.
Eunan, who is based in Ballybofey, explained that the Wild Atlantic Marathon is an idea he’d been working on for quite a while, following his experiences as an athlete, a physical therapist and an endurance coach.
“More recently I have done a Masters in Sport and Exercise Psychology. So with all that knowledge and experience I’ve put this event together.
“ Last year Donegal was voted the coolest place on the plant by National Greographic Traveller. So I decided it was time that Donegal had its own marathon, and what better place to start the race off than Killybegs.”
The marathon will start from the pier in Killybegs and proceed to Kilcar via the coast road where it will take in all the scenic areas. It will then go on to Carrick via the coasts roads as well before making its way into Malin Mor and Malin Beag before finishing at the Glencolmcille Folk Village. The half marathon will start just outside Carrick and will also finish in Glencolmcille.
“Renowned Donegal Clothing Company, Magee 1866 have come on board as the major sponsor. We are appealing to people all over Donegal, be they from the corporation or commercial sector, to get involved and be part of this great event in Donegal this year, whether it be from a sponsorship angle or just to have your business represented by a staff member or a relay team entry. Every county in Ireland will be represented in the July event, while we also have entries from Donegal, America, Canada, Tasmania, Australia, England, Scotland, Wales and Sweden.”
“There’s a relay section in the marathon, with a maximum of four members per team which we are inviting families, groups of friends, running mates, business colleagues, sporting clubs to register for fun, and all the entries in this section will have prizes sponsored by Ballyshannon Killybegs Credit Union.”
There will be a presentation ceremony in Killybegs, and a celebratory party has been organised for Glencolmcille after the race. A number of local businesses will sponsor the refreshments for the after-gigs.
Speaking on behalf of Magee 1866, Patrick Temple said the world renowned but local firm are delighted to be associated with the event. “It’s absolutely fantastic for Magee 1866, as a home-grown Donegal brand, to be sponsoring the Magee 1866 Donegal Wild Atlantic Marathon and Half Marathon which is epitomises many of the things that Donegal stands for; the rugged landscape, the Wild Atlantic Way and the wonderful lifestyle we have here. We look forward to welcoming people from all over the world as well as local people to come and enjoy it,” he said.
“As a family, we are very much outdoor people. Most of our family and team at Magee 1866 have participated in a marathon, but for some of us it’s been a few years. With this event taking place on our doorstep for the first time ever has motivated us to take up the challenge,” he added.
The marathon starts at 8am and the half marathon gets underway at 10.30am. Online registration is now open at https://register.primoevents.com/ps/event/MageeDonegalWildAtlanticMarathonHalfMarathon2018
Follow the Magee 1866 Donegal Wild Atlantic Marathon on their Facebook Page https://www.facebook.com/ExcelSportsIreland – Details about the route, accommodation and updates will be posted here.