COMMONWEALTH GAMES: The marathon at this year’s Commonwealth Games will showcase Glasgow “at its best” and allow thousands of spectators to watch the free event, organisers believe.
The route for the race was unveiled today and will see athletes start and finish in Glasgow Green and run through the centre and south of the city, past popular landmarks such as George Square and Buchanan Street.
Along with the cycling road race and time trial, the marathon is one of three free events at the Games.
The 26.2-mile course will take the athletes through three parks and they will cross the River Clyde four times.
It will take place on Sunday July 27, with the medal ceremony being held at Hampden Park during the first day of athletics action at the stadium.
The marathon course has been designed to challenge the athletes but also highlight the sights of Glasgow. It has been endorsed by governing body the International Association of Athletics Federations and will receive final certification closer to the event, organisers said.
Glasgow 2014 chief executive David Grevemberg said: “It’s a wonderful showcase event for the Games and one that everyone can come and enjoy. The route the athletes will take really shows Glasgow at its best and will bring the spectacle of live competitive sport right into the heart of the city.
“The marathon is one of the three free events on offer, showing you don’t need a ticket to enjoy the unique Commonwealth Games experience.
“We’re looking forward to seeing thousands of sports fans line the route to cheer on the athletes as they push towards the finish line and the special atmosphere of Glasgow Green.”
Mr Grevemberg believes the middle part of the route through Bellahouston Park will particularly challenge the runners with the steepest hills on the course.
Derek Hawkins, who will compete in the marathon for Team Scotland, is looking forward to the race.
He said: “I experienced the roar of a home crowd first-hand at the London Marathon when I set the qualifying standard for the Commonwealth Games and I have no doubt the support in Glasgow will make a huge difference to me.
“It’s fantastic for me to know the route to map it out fully in my head and start to think about when to push hard.”
“I think it will be similar to London, there’s a few hills but also good stretches of flat road which should make for some fast times.”