Belfast Telegraph

Belfast City Marathon organisers admit 2019 route was even longer

Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 5th May 2019 - General view of the start of the Deep RiverRock Belfast City Marathon at the Stormont Estate, Belfast.
Photo by Kelvin Boyes / Press Eye.
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 5th May 2019 - General view of the start of the Deep RiverRock Belfast City Marathon at the Stormont Estate, Belfast. Photo by Kelvin Boyes / Press Eye.
Runners and spectators at Finaghy crossroads during the Deep RiverRock Belfast City Marathon. Photo by Kelvin Boyes / Press Eye.
Relay runners and walkers from Co Down raising funds for Tiny Life. Photo by Brian Little / Press Eye
Belfast City Marathon. Photo by Freddie Parkinson / Press Eye
5/5/19 PACEMAKER PRESS The Belfast Marathon leaves from Stormont and works its way through the city. PICTURE MATT BOHILL PACEMAKER PRESS
5/5/19 PACEMAKER PRESS The Belfast Marathon leaves from Stormont and works its way through the city. PICTURE MATT BOHILL PACEMAKER PRESS
5/5/19 PACEMAKER PRESS The Belfast Marathon leaves from Stormont and works its way through the city. PICTURE MATT BOHILL PACEMAKER PRESS
5/5/19 PACEMAKER PRESS The Belfast Marathon leaves from Stormont and works its way through the city. PICTURE MATT BOHILL PACEMAKER PRESS
5/5/19 PACEMAKER PRESS The Belfast Marathon leaves from Stormont and works its way through the city. PICTURE MATT BOHILL PACEMAKER PRESS
5/5/19 PACEMAKER PRESS The Belfast Marathon leaves from Stormont and works its way through the city. PICTURE MATT BOHILL PACEMAKER PRESS
5/5/19 PACEMAKER PRESS The Belfast Marathon leaves from Stormont and works its way through the city. PICTURE MATT BOHILL PACEMAKER PRESS
5/5/19 PACEMAKER PRESS The Belfast Marathon leaves from Stormont and works its way through the city. PICTURE MATT BOHILL PACEMAKER PRESS
5/5/19 PACEMAKER PRESS The Belfast Marathon leaves from Stormont and works its way through the city. PICTURE MATT BOHILL PACEMAKER PRESS
5/5/19 PACEMAKER PRESS The Belfast Marathon leaves from Stormont and works its way through the city. PICTURE MATT BOHILL PACEMAKER PRESS
5/5/19 PACEMAKER PRESS The Belfast Marathon leaves from Stormont and works its way through the city. PICTURE MATT BOHILL PACEMAKER PRESS
5/5/19 PACEMAKER PRESS The Belfast Marathon leaves from Stormont and works its way through the city. PICTURE MATT BOHILL PACEMAKER PRESS
5/5/19 PACEMAKER PRESS The Belfast Marathon leaves from Stormont and works its way through the city. PICTURE MATT BOHILL PACEMAKER PRESS
5/5/19 PACEMAKER PRESS The Belfast Marathon leaves from Stormont and works its way through the city. PICTURE MATT BOHILL PACEMAKER PRESS
5/5/19 PACEMAKER PRESS The Belfast Marathon leaves from Stormont and works its way through the city. PICTURE MATT BOHILL PACEMAKER PRESS
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 5th May 2019 - Runners from the Michaela Foundation at the start of the Deep RiverRock Belfast City Marathon at the Stormont Estate, Belfast. Photo by Kelvin Boyes / Press Eye.
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 5th May 2019 - Runners at the start of the Deep RiverRock Belfast City Marathon at the Stormont Estate, Belfast. Photo by Kelvin Boyes / Press Eye.
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 5th May 2019 - Una McNeill and Mags Mathieson at the start of the Deep RiverRock Belfast City Marathon at the Stormont Estate, Belfast. Photo by Kelvin Boyes / Press Eye.
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 5th May 2019 - Darren McDowell, Gavin Dines, Richard Thompson and Keith Noble at the start of the Deep RiverRock Belfast City Marathon at the Stormont Estate, Belfast. Photo by Kelvin Boyes / Press Eye.
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 5th May 2019 - Orsolya Toth and Nicole Enache at the start of the Deep RiverRock Belfast City Marathon at the Stormont Estate, Belfast. Photo by Kelvin Boyes / Press Eye.
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 5th May 2019 - Ruth Lipsett and Kevin Crossley at the start of the Deep RiverRock Belfast City Marathon at the Stormont Estate, Belfast. Photo by Kelvin Boyes / Press Eye.
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 5th May 2019 - Runners from the Stroke Association at the start of the Deep RiverRock Belfast City Marathon at the Stormont Estate, Belfast. Photo by Kelvin Boyes / Press Eye.
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 5th May 2019 - Runners from the Michaela Foundation at the start of the Deep RiverRock Belfast City Marathon at the Stormont Estate, Belfast. Photo by Kelvin Boyes / Press Eye.
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 5th May 2019 - General view of the start of the Deep RiverRock Belfast City Marathon at the Stormont Estate, Belfast. Photo by Kelvin Boyes / Press Eye.
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 5th May 2019 - Angela Scanlon and Una McMahon-Beattie at the start of the Deep RiverRock Belfast City Marathon at the Stormont Estate, Belfast. Photo by Kelvin Boyes / Press Eye.
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 5th May 2019 - Experiment 26.2 Group at the start of the Deep RiverRock Belfast City Marathon at the Stormont Estate, Belfast. Photo by Kelvin Boyes / Press Eye.
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 5th May 2019 - Pacer volunteers at the start of the Deep RiverRock Belfast City Marathon at the Stormont Estate, Belfast. Photo by Kelvin Boyes / Press Eye.
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 5th May 2019 - Nadine and Neil Mercer at the start of the Deep RiverRock Belfast City Marathon at the Stormont Estate, Belfast. Photo by Kelvin Boyes / Press Eye.
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 5th May 2019 - Ben Scott and Ivan Stringer at the start of the Deep RiverRock Belfast City Marathon at the Stormont Estate, Belfast. Photo by Kelvin Boyes / Press Eye.
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 5th May 2019 - Siobhan Robinson, Ursula Warke, Carol Torrens, Mary McKendry and Adam Warke at the start of the Deep RiverRock Belfast City Marathon at the Stormont Estate, Belfast. Photo by Kelvin Boyes / Press Eye.
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 5th May 2019 - Alan Bailey, James Stinson and Patrick Jack at the start of the Deep RiverRock Belfast City Marathon at the Stormont Estate, Belfast. Photo by Kelvin Boyes / Press Eye.
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 5th May 2019 - Simon Ridgway and Jason Lythgoe at the start of the Deep RiverRock Belfast City Marathon at the Stormont Estate, Belfast. Photo by Kelvin Boyes / Press Eye.
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 5th May 2019 - Declan Skelton, Clarke Fennelly, Darren Scullion and David Millar at the start of the Deep RiverRock Belfast City Marathon at the Stormont Estate, Belfast. Photo by Kelvin Boyes / Press Eye.
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 5th May 2019 - Volunteers at the start of the Deep RiverRock Belfast City Marathon at the Stormont Estate, Belfast. Photo by Kelvin Boyes / Press Eye.
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 5th May 2019 - Kathryn Kavanagh, Shirley Currie, Lorraine and Suzanne Enfield at the start of the Deep RiverRock Belfast City Marathon at the Stormont Estate, Belfast. Photo by Kelvin Boyes / Press Eye.
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 5th May 2019 - General view of the start of the Deep RiverRock Belfast City Marathon at the Stormont Estate, Belfast. Photo by Kelvin Boyes / Press Eye.
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 5th May 2019 - General view of the start of the Deep RiverRock Belfast City Marathon at the Stormont Estate, Belfast. Photo by Kelvin Boyes / Press Eye.
5/5/19 PACEMAKER PRESS The Belfast Marathon leaves from Stormont and works its way through the city. PICTURE MATT BOHILL PACEMAKER PRESS
5/5/19 PACEMAKER PRESS The Belfast Marathon leaves from Stormont and works its way through the city. PICTURE MATT BOHILL PACEMAKER PRESS
5/5/19 PACEMAKER PRESS The Belfast Marathon leaves from Stormont and works its way through the city. PICTURE MATT BOHILL PACEMAKER PRESS
5/5/19 PACEMAKER PRESS The Belfast Marathon leaves from Stormont and works its way through the city. PICTURE MATT BOHILL PACEMAKER PRESS
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 5th May 2019 - General view of the start of the Deep RiverRock Belfast City Marathon at the Stormont Estate, Belfast. Photo by Kelvin Boyes / Press Eye.
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 5th May 2019 - General view of the start of the Deep RiverRock Belfast City Marathon at the Stormont Estate, Belfast. Photo by Kelvin Boyes / Press Eye.
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 5th May 2019 - General view of the start of the Deep RiverRock Belfast City Marathon at the Stormont Estate, Belfast. Photo by Kelvin Boyes / Press Eye.
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 5th May 2019 - General view of the start of the Deep RiverRock Belfast City Marathon at the Stormont Estate, Belfast. Photo by Kelvin Boyes / Press Eye.
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 5th May 2019 - General view of the start of the Deep RiverRock Belfast City Marathon at the Stormont Estate, Belfast. Photo by Kelvin Boyes / Press Eye.
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 5th May 2019 - General view of the start of the Deep RiverRock Belfast City Marathon at the Stormont Estate, Belfast. Photo by Kelvin Boyes / Press Eye.
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 5th May 2019 - General view of the start of the Deep RiverRock Belfast City Marathon at the Stormont Estate, Belfast. Photo by Kelvin Boyes / Press Eye.
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 5th May 2019 - General view of the start of the Deep RiverRock Belfast City Marathon at the Stormont Estate, Belfast. Photo by Kelvin Boyes / Press Eye.
Press Eye - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 5th May 2019 - General view of the start of the Deep RiverRock Belfast City Marathon at the Stormont Estate, Belfast. Photo by Kelvin Boyes / Press Eye.
Jonathan Bell

By Jonathan Bell

Belfast City Marathon organisers have conceded the 2019 route was even longer than they first admitted.

They now say it was 544 metres longer than the 26.2miles it should have been and 84 metres longer than they first thought. Times have been up to a second faster.

For the May 5 run - the first to be held on a Sunday and on a new 'flatter and faster' route through the city - runners reported it being too long with some saying by around half a mile.

It's thought the misplacement of cones around Ballyhackamore led to the extended distance with the lead car diverting from the official route on two occasions.

Runners also reported being taken through the wrong gate in Ormeau Park.

On the day organisers said "approximately 460 metres" were added to the course blaming human error. They said runners times would be adjusted to compensate for the extra distance. The official measurer at the time hit out saying the route he had planned was the correct length.

However, given the error it meant times for the elite athletes did not count and also experienced runners could not use their times to qualify for prestigious marathons elsewhere sparking frustration among those dedicated to the sport.

Belfast City Marathon organisers have now said the London Marathon has agreed to accept adjusted times for qualification.

But they have admitted they made an error on the extended length participants ran on the day.

"It has been determined from measuring the route taken by marathon runners on Sunday May 5, that the 2019 marathon course was 544 metres too long, not 460 metres as originally stated," they said in a statement.

Adjusted times have been updated on the marathon website.

On the day Kenyans Joel Kositany won the marathon in a time of 2:18:41. He is now listed as having completed the course in a time of 2:17:09 - over a second faster.

"Unfortunately Run Britain “Power of 10” are unable to accept these adjusted times and will only accept the finisher times. We understand that Run Britain will be updating their records to reflect this," the organisers added.

Around 18,000 took part in the full marathon, the wheelchair race, team relay, walk and fun run for 2019's 38th Deep RiverRock Belfast City Marathon. Organisers said that was up by 60% with many of those taking part saying the course was much improved.

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