It has already been reported that on Monday, after the extraordinary government meeting, the Minister of Health Ilze Hänķele (AP) indicated that possible clarifications on the organization of the “Rimi Riga Marathon” due to Covid-19 will be discussed this week.
As it will not be possible to keep a distance of two meters from other runners in the start area, the organizers invite all participants to come to the Freedom Monument in face masks, especially if runners arrive at the start area by public transport, where they are mandatory from Wednesday. Masks will also be a mandatory requirement in the start corridors, although the length of stay will not exceed ten minutes.
All participants are invited to download the “Stop Covid” app and assess their health during the day of the marathon. If you feel unwell, be sure to stay home. Persons subject to quarantine or self-isolation are prohibited.
Although a total of about 15,000 participants will take part in the “Rimi Riga Marathon” over the weekend, the start times of the distances are scattered in waves so that no more than 2,500 participants gather together.
The start, which usually involved massive gatherings and gatherings on the embankment on November 11, will be “broken” in the “waves” and corridors at the Freedom Monument this year so as to minimize the number of people together, the time spent together and the number of participants at the same time. No more than 500 participants will gather in one corridor, no more than 2,500 participants in one “wave”.
The new tracks are planned to separate the start (at the Freedom Monument) from the finish (November 11 in Krastmala), further dividing the flow of participants. In turn, all activities on the track and at the finish will be focused on the participants finishing, scattering and not crowding.
“We have created a detailed schedule for the distribution of marathon participants in order to reduce the risks of infection with Covid-19.” Rimi Riga Marathon “On the small tracks of the Children’s Day on October 10, start times this year are indicated on the participants’ numbers. On October 11, the maximum number of participants in the start will be ten kilometers away, but it will also be less than 3000. In the start corridors, we invite you to use the face masks you bring and on Children’s Day we invite parents to use the masks as well,
Given that face masks must be worn on public transport from Wednesday and some participants will come to the start of the marathon by public transport, the organizers call not to remove the masks on the way to the start and in the start corridors. After the start, disposable masks will be able to be disposed of in specially equipped Latvian Green Dot waste containers on the side of the track.
Face masks are not mandatory for children under 13, but parents are encouraged to be responsible and wear masks on Children’s Day.
The marathon organizers also invite all participants who have not yet downloaded the “Stop Covid” app to do so before the start, in order to facilitate the search for contacts, if necessary.
“Rimi Riga Marathon” will take place this year without the large selection of elite runners typical of the Golden Marathons, as well as without the participation of foreign running lovers and marathon-tourists who could not afford ten days of self-isolation and moved to May 2021 anywhere in the world, using the “Rimi Riga Marathon” virtual running club platform. The only foreigners for whom special permits approved by the regulations of the Cabinet of Ministers are held are those elite runners who have expressed a wish to run in Riga for the qualification of Olympic regulations for the Tokyo Olympic Games.
In total, at the weekend of October 10 and October 11, at least 15,000 Latvian participants and a “handful” of foreigners will start scattered on tracks of different distances. Children’s Days on the small tracks on October 10 from 10 am to 2 pm in the 200-meter distance 300-400 children will start every hour, in the 400-meter distance – 400-500 children, but on the “Happy Babies” track 100-150 babies will start.
1716 participants were registered for the Family Race planned for the end of the Children’s Day at 15.00 On Sunday, October 11, 795 marathoners will go on the 42-kilometer distance on the marathon day, at 7.30 pm 2364 half-marathon participants will start, while at 12.30 2734 ten-kilometer participants will start. The 5.5-kilometer distance is divided into two “waves” and in each of them about 2,000 runners will start.
Due to security reasons and restrictions on gatherings, there will be no EXPO this year – the participants received the start numbers for the first time and will continue to receive the marathon’s official courier mail this week. There will also be luggage storage only for long distances (42 and 21 kilometers) in order to avoid possible crowding of participants of six and ten kilometers.
The organizers call on the six- and ten-kilometer runners to think about clothing suitable for October in time, taking into account that storage for the shortest distances will not be provided. Also, there will be no team tents and activities that provide for gatherings this year.
Some other important safety aspects to consider for participants – participants’ benefits at energy points and at the finish will be offered only in pre-packaged form – water (0.5 liter “Mangali” water bottles), pre-packaged SIS gel for long distance participants, pre-packaged snacks for finishers and other benefits.
Covid-19 restriction announcements will be played regularly at the start and finish of the marathon. Informative environmental stands with an invitation to observe a distance of two meters will be placed both at the start and at the finish, as well as at the luggage storage. Hand sanitizers will also be available everywhere.
The team of marathon organizers and volunteer assistants, who will work closely with the runners, such as medal distributors, will be equipped with “Shield48 visors” and face masks. The rest of the staff will be provided with reusable face masks and will wear them whenever they cannot keep a distance of two meters.
As reported, the “Rimi Riga Marathon” is one of the few World Athletics Association Gold Label marathons in the world, which will take place this year according to the instructions of epidemiologists.
The Riga Marathon distance will offer one of the rare and last opportunities for athletes to qualify for the 2021 Tokyo Olympics this year.
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