Over 700 runners from 15 countries and territories have signed up for this Saturday’s Saipan Marathon.
The 736 registrants include 358 from The Marianas, 122 from Korea, 125 from Japan, 66 from the United States., 42 from the Philippines, six from Guam, four from Malaysia, three from China, two each from Canada, Brazil, and Thailand, and one apiece from the Federated State of Micronesia, Russia, Taiwan, and Germany.
Saipan Marathon 2020 is an annual signature event of the Marianas Visitors Authority aimed at drawing visitors and media attention to the destination. This year’s event adds a 5K course to its 10K, half marathon, and full marathon repertoire.
“We are ready for a great event on Saturday,” said MVA managing director Priscilla M. Iakopo.
“Despite the dampening effect of COVID-19, which has led to some cancellations, there is still interest in The Marianas and Saipan Marathon, and this event will help remind other visitors that we are still a clean and beautiful destination. This weekend and always, we are encouraging everyone to observe the extensive public education on how to protect ourselves at this and other public arenas. As part of our collaborative efforts, the Commonwealth Healthcare Corp. will be on site for health screening purposes. Also, we would like remind drivers to exercise caution and follow all traffic officers’ directions on the road Saturday morning to ensure a safe event for all participants,” she added.
All competitors are required to pick up their race packets tomorrow at the American Memorial Park. Pickup times are 3pm-4pm for team/groups/tour groups/etc. and 4pm-6pm for individuals only.
Powerade returns this year as exclusive sponsor, while Skymark Airlines, which provides direct daily flights from Tokyo to Saipan, is a platinum sponsor, along with IT&E. Hyatt Regency Saipan has signed on as a gold sponsor, and silver sponsors are Budget Car Rental Saipan, Coca-Cola/Foremost, Grandvrio Resort Saipan, Saipan Apparel, Saipan Plant Center, and Subway. Supporters include Northern Marianas Athletics, Hotel Association of the Northern Mariana Islands, American Memorial Park, Dept. of Public Safety, Dept. of Public Works, Dept. of Fire and Emergency Services, Div. of Parks and Grounds, and Hawaiian Rock Products.
Saipan Marathon is certified by the International Association of Athletic Federations through the Association of International Marathons and Distance Races and supported by the Northern Marianas Sports Association.
“Our sporting community continues to prepare and train for next year’s Pacific Mini Games to be held here in and this weekend’s marathon competition provides and excellent venue to build stamina and mental preparedness required for the competition ahead among many athletes from many nations,” NMSA stated. “We are thankful for the vigilant effort of the administration and all parties in the tourism and medical community that are doing everything within their power to screen and mitigate for COVID-19. Good luck to all participants and let’s help MVA welcome all visitors enthusiastically.”
The race will start and end at the American Memorial Park. The full marathon will kick off at 4:30am; 5:30am is for the half marathon; 5:45am for the 10K; and at 6am for the 5K. The cut-off time for the full marathon will be 8:30am at the halfway point. There is no cut-off time for the other courses.
For more information, visit The Marianas Calendar at www.mymarianas.com or contact Diaz at 1-670-664-3210 or firstname.lastname@example.org. (MVA)