London 2017 Ltd today confirmed the routes for the Marathon and Race Walks taking place at the IAAF World Championships London 2017 on Sunday 6th August and Sunday 13th August.
The routes which are the final part of the competition timetable and venue plan to be announced, will offer both fans and athletes a stunning sporting spectacle.
Set against some of the capital’s most historically-significant and picturesque backdrops, the 26.2 mile marathon route will start and finish at Tower Bridge in central London. With the backdrop of the start of the races provided by the historic Tower of London, the route will comprise four laps of a 10km course on closed roads, heading west along Victoria Embankment towards the Houses of Parliament, then back alongside the River Thames to St Paul’s Cathedral, and returning to the Tower of London.
The course was designed in conjunction with the IAAF and Transport For London, and next summer will be the first time ever that an IAAF World Championships stages two marathons back-to-back on the same day. Medallists from both men’s and women’s races will receive their medals in front of the Tower of London where a medal stage and supporter zone will be created to make the most of the day’s world championship atmosphere.
The Men’s Marathon will set off at 10:55 on Sunday 6th August. The Women’s Marathon will begin at 14:00 providing an incredible day of distance running through the nation’s capital city.
On the following Sunday (13th August) the unique ‘Festival of Race Walks’ will be staged at The Mall, St James Park with the kind permission of The Royal Parks on a 2km loop between Buckingham Palace and Admiralty Arch. The 20km races will see athletes perform 10 laps of the course, whilst the 50km race will be 25 laps of the circuit*.
The Race Walk medals will also be presented on The Mall providing a beautiful backdrop for the ceremonies.
Both courses have been designed with athletes and spectators at the heart of the events, with ample opportunity for fans to watch the competitors on multiple occasions, and access the different vantage points with ease.
Niels de Vos, Championships Director of London 2017 Ltd said:
“We are delighted to confirm the 2017 marathon and race walk routes which will showcase the history and beauty of central London.
“The routes are selected for fast times using a flat, loop circuit. The central London routes will attract huge crowds eager to watch the worlds best athletes for free, whilst the iconic views of Tower Bridge, Houses of Parliament, Buckingham Palace and more will offer a stunning backdrop to a huge global TV audience.
“With tickets on track for a sell out at the Stadium, we expect record crowds to take advantage of these free to view events, recreating the famous London 'wall of noise' for the competitors.”
Sebastian Coe, President of the IAAF said:
“The local organising team in London are making excellent progress and it’s been great to see the final piece of the 2017 competition puzzle come together. I have every confidence that the IAAF World Championships London 2017 will be an incredible event. The marathon is set to be an unbelievable spectacle within the city. The course is utterly unique and will provide an atmosphere second to none. Similarly with the race walking loop on The Mall offering multiple opportunities to watch the athletes, the final Sunday of the championships is also going to offer a very special spectator experience in central London.”
Sadiq Khan, The Mayor of London, said:
“It’s fantastic that both the marathon and race walk events will take place on the historic streets of London. I know the world’s best athletes will enjoy taking in the sights of our great city in their quest for glory, cheered on by the thousands of Londoners who will line the streets for these two free events and contribute to making London 2017 an unforgettable IAAF World and World ParaAthletics championships.”
Ingrid Kristiansen, Norway’s former marathon World Champion and world record holder said:
“It’s always great for athletes to see the course way ahead of time so that you can prepare in the best possible way. I think the athletes will be really excited by this route that offers an incredible mix of everything that London has to offer. It’s certainly an inspiring route, and when you combine that with Britain’s wonderful athletics fans, then the Marathon will be an event not to be missed.”
Tom Bosworth, Great Britain’s 20km race walk record holder added:
“The World Championships race walk has never been staged in such an iconic location. To have the chance to perform on The Mall will be one of the greatest moments in my career. London 2017 will see the best of world-class athletics in the London Stadium and on the streets of London. It will be unforgettable for both fans and athletes.”
Dick Harrold, Governor of the Tower of London:
“The Tower of London has witnessed many spectacular events over nine centuries and continues to provide a magnificent backdrop for major occasions in the city. We are thrilled to be hosting the medal presentation for the IAAF World Championships’ Marathon and look forward to welcoming the athletes and their supporters to the Tower of London next year.”
Alun Mainwaring, Head of Event Development, The Royal Parks:
“We are thrilled to welcome the ‘Festival of Race Walks’ to The Mall in St James Park next year. The non stadia events are set amongst some of London’s most historic back drops and it’s great that the The Royal Parks will contribute and feature in the IAAF World Championships London 2017 next year.”
The IAAF World Championships and the World ParaAthletics Championships will bring together 3,300 world-class athletes from more than 200 countries, who will compete in 30 sessions across 20 amazing days. This is the first time that the World ParaAthletics Championships and the IAAF World Championships will be hosted by the same city in the same summer.
London 2017 Ltd also announced that following the successful ballot process which saw more than a million tickets applied for the IAAF World Championships London 2017, any unsold tickets will go on sale week commencing 28 November. To be amongst the first to be notified about further tickets on sale, sign up to the Inside Track at http://www.london2017athletics.com/register