Two of Dingle’s best known sons and daughters were on hand today to launch the Dingle Marathon 2011. Former Kerry footballer Dara Ó Cinnéide and RTÉ’s Siún Nic Gearailt were in attendance, as they announced details of the Dingle Marathon 2011 which will take place on 3rd September 2011.
This is the third year of the Dingle Marathon, a marathon that has gone from strength to strength since its first year in 2009. It is already one of the best subscribed races in Ireland with an estimated 2,500 runners taking part on a course that covers some of the most picturesque locations in Ireland, if not the world. Dingle Marathon organizers and local businesses believe the event brings in over €1m into the area over the course of the weekend.
This years Dingle Marathon again offers runners two options with the full and the half marathon both on offer. This year also sees the introduction of a “buddy” scheme whereby training partners who sign up together get discounts on their applications.
Speaking ahead of the race, former An Ghaeltacht and Kerry footballer Dara Ó Cinnéide was looking forward to the day: “Unfortunately Kerry people rarely have Dublin on their minds on the first weekend in September! So the Dingle Marathon has provided us Kerry supporters with something very worthwhile to concentrate our efforts on!
“From a regional point of view, the Dingle Marathon provides a very welcome boost to local businesses and the influx of over 2,500 runners and their supporters to Dingle over the weekend really creates a festival atmosphere in the town. Everyone still talks about the wonderful weather we had for last year’s race and the craic that was had in and around the event.
“But looking at the wider impact that the Dingle Marathon has you need look no further than the countless charities that the organizers have partnered with over the years. The fundraising that goes on behind the scenes and the people that benefit, is the real story.
“Gach rath orthu siúd atá ag glacadh páirt i Maratón an Daingin agus le cúnamh Dé beidh lá agus deireadh seachtaine den scoth againn.”
RTÉ News and Nuacht presenter Siún Nic Gearailt who grew up down the road in Feothanach commented: “For an event that is only entering it’s third year, it is unusual in that it already has a place in local people’s hearts! Already, I can’t wait for the weekend to come!
“As a teenager, the Dingle Regatta always signalled the end of summer, being the last big event my sister, brother and I participated in before returning to school. In some ways it brought down the curtain on the summer months in Corca Dhuibhne, but the Dingle Marathon extends that season, and the town seems to have really embraced the event.
“From my standpoint as a local, I think it is a great way of promoting the area. Corca Dhuibhne is in my opinion one of the most scenic places in the world. I think of breathtaking views from Ceann Trá, to Ceann Sléibhe, to Feothanach.
“The great benefits flowing from this event is that as well as raising awareness it will also raise money for charity. For my part I am delighted to support the event and I urge you all to train vigorously and get up and go!
“Feicfimid sibh ar fad ar an triú lá!”
Dingle Marathon 2011 organiser Ken Dunne said: “I am absolutely thrilled to be organising the third running of the Dingle marathon. The event already holds a very special place in my heart. I love to hear of all the special stories that the participants have in memory from previous years.
“Dingle town, the surrounding areas and of course the people are absolutely amazing, nothing gives me more excitement than driving over the Connor Pass and in to Dingle town. I can’t wait for this year’s event and hopefully making it bigger and better for all concerned.”
If you want to enter the Dingle Marathon 2011 please log on towww.dinglemarathon.ie and fill out the form online.
Regular updates can be found on Facebook and Twitter while further details on the course, the marathon pack, the weekend itself and its charity partners are also all available on www.dinglemarathon.ie .