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Tropical island Hainan offers warm welcome to marathon runners

By Sun Xiaochen | chinadaily.com.cn | Updated: 2017-01-06 16:41

Boasting well-prepared service and a scenic coastal course, the 2nd Hainan (Sanya) International Marathon seems ready to provide running enthusiasts a warm welcome on the tropical island in South China.

With long-distance running becoming increasingly popular in China, the Hainan event will provide participants a unique experience, highlighted by its coastal course passing major scenic spots and considerate runners' services, organizers said on Thursday.

The event, which is scheduled to take place on the morning of Feb 26, will offer 5,000 spots for its full-length race (42.195 km), 5,000 for the half-marathon race and 10,000 for the mini marathon (5 km).

Starting from Thursday, interested participants can visit the event's official website www.hainan-marathon.com to sign up for the race.

The organizing committee will run an online lottery to decide who will receive a place on the starting line if the number of people registered for the event surpasses the total number of entries on offer.

"A great marathon race could inspire participants to rediscover the host city of the event. We would love to encourage more people to exercise more, and to bring more vitality and energy to the city through sports participation," said Yang Yiguang, deputy director of the department of culture, radio, television, publication and sports of Hainan province.

Although it's a young event in a country where more than 300 marathon races were held in 2016, the Hainan event has pledged to impress participants with an emphasis in service and management.

The organizing committee will arrange 80 patrolling medical staff members and 1,000 volunteers trained by first-aid experts along the course for health emergencies, one of the best-prepared events in regards to medical support in the country.

Starting from the 15km spot in the race, supply points will be set every 2.5 km along the route with music being played throughout the entire race. Relaxing massage and pick-up services are also available at the finish lines for both the half and full marathons.

"With the number of marathon races skyrocketing, details in services provided for runners will distinguish excellent events from others,” said Wang Dawei, vice-president of Chinese Athletic Association.

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