Whether you’re an experienced marathon runner or just starting out with your first 5K, it’s fair to say that you will be looking for similar things when it comes to signing up for a race. A friendly welcome, great course, smooth organisation and fun race experience are the immediate criteria, and in the case of the OPAP Limassol Marathon GSO this is just for starters.
Taking place on 17-18 March 2018, the OPAP Limassol Marathon GSO is Cyprus’ largest sporting event, with six races spread out over the weekend alongside masses of entertainment, activities and social events. This is the place to come for a complete race experience – and a perfect excuse to combine a run in the sun with a fantastic weekend away.
For those of us emerging from a British winter, heading to the southern Mediterranean to run alongside sparkling blue seas is pretty much race heaven. Many of the races at the OPAP Limassol Marathon GSO take place along the spectacular coast road of Limassol – the marathon itself stretching for 21km along the coastline – which treats runners to magnificent views and a refreshing sea breeze as they enjoy the beautiful spring climate.
Of particular appeal is the event’s flat, fast and remarkably straight course, which provides a perfect opportunity to run a PB. As well as attracting elite and club runners, this makes the OPAP Limassol Marathon ideal for those looking for their first overseas race and for runners of mixed abilities wishing to travel together, as each can enter the race of their choice whilst enjoying an enviable weekend away.
Running clubs in particular can take advantage of the flexible packages offered by the race organisers, to ensure minimum hassle and maximum enjoyment on race weekend. With discounted race entry, the lowest prices on accommodation and all the small things taken care of, like race pack delivery to the hotel and transportation to the start line, visiting Limassol with friends, family or club mates could not be easier. With prices from as little as €120 for a 2-night stay including accommodation, race entry and race day support, it makes it almost cheaper to race in Limassol than the UK – and you get a superb weekend in Cyprus on top!
This is very much in line with the incredible welcome runners receive from the race organisers and local people throughout their stay in Limassol. It is clear that they really want you to be there and as such they are constantly striving to make your race experience the very best it can be. Feedback from participants often highlights how relaxed they have been made to feel and what a wonderfully social and friendly event the OPAP Limassol Marathon GSO is, which is exactly what you want when racing away from home.
The OPAP Limassol Marathon GSO kicks off on Saturday 17th March with the PrimeTel 5K Corporate Race and the Andrey and Julia Dashin’s Foundation 1K Youth Race. Sunday 18th March then hosts the AIMS-accredited OPAP Limassol Marathon GSO, the Half Marathon, the Petrolina 10K Energy Race and the 5K City Race. Together these races ensure a lively and celebratory atmosphere about town, with plenty to see and do for everyone involved.
The race village is located at the palm tree-lined seafront of Molos, in the centre of Limassol, and this is a brilliant hub for competitors and spectators to gather and enjoy all the action. With activities taking place throughout the weekend, including a festive after-party and closing ceremony, it is a perfect base for runners and non-runner friends just there to soak it all up.
Of course, for some runners there is real medal hope and mention has to be made of the generous cash prizes on offer at the OPAP Limassol Marathon GSO. The male and female winners will each win €2,000 for the Marathon and €1,000 for the Half Marathon, as long as their times are under 2:17:22 for men and 2:50:00 for women. Additionally, if the winner breaks the current course record, their prize will be doubled.
The event will also celebrate winners in each of the six age categories (18-29, 30-39, 40-49, 50-59, 60-69 years old and 70+) in the Marathon, Half Marathon, Petrolina 10K Energy Race and 5K City Race.
There will also be athletes wishing to run to raise money for charity, and for 2018 the OPAP Limassol Marathon GSO has partnered with much-loved charity Cancer Research UK. Anyone wishing to run the OPAP Limassol Marathon GSO for Cancer Research UK should sign up for a place on the race website and then get a sponsorship pack directly from Cancer Research UK.
OPAP Limassol Marathon GSO Race Director Andreas Spyrou commented: “The 2018 OPAP Limassol Marathon GSO promises to be our biggest and best event yet, and we are looking forward to welcoming athletes from all over the world to this fantastic celebration of running. There is a reason we say ‘run with a smile’ as people really do have a superb race experience in Limassol. Our packages have been specially designed to enable visitors to spend a few days enjoying the food, weather, culture, ancient ruins and first-class accommodation whilst taking part in the sport they love. Runners can enjoy the lowest prices now with our early bird entry fees and look forward to an unforgettable race experience as we move into next spring.”
Entries are now open for the 2018 OPAP Limassol Marathon GSO. Early bird entrants benefit from a 40% discount until 31st October, with fees as follows: Marathon €36, Half Marathon €27, Petrolina 10K Energy Race €18, 5K City Race €18.
Go to www.limassolmarathon.com for further details and to register. You can also like the Facebook page and follow @RunLimassol #RunLimassol on Twitter to keep up-to-date with all the latest news about OPAP Limassol Marathon GSO.