Fergal Deegan, Live 95FM, Alan English, editor of the Limerick Leader and Robert Bourke, Partner, HOMS Solicitors at the launch of the Great Limerick Run Picture: Sean Curtin / Fusionshooters
THE seventh annual Barrington’s Hospital Great Limerick Run is estimated to deliver a welcome €5m boost to the local economy over the course of the May Bank Holiday weekend.
It was launched this Monday at the Strand Hotel and the organisers of Limerick’s biggest event said that they expect entries to exceed last year’s participant numbers of 14,200 based on the current increased level of early registrations.
Nearly 2,000 registrations have already been received to avail of the early bird discounted race entries over the three race distances on Sunday, May 1.
The GLR is now the largest mass participatory event outside of Dublin and the only annual ‘tier one’ event in the Mid-West region.
Speaking at the launch, race director John Cleary confirmed that the Munster Athletics Council have now designated both the marathon and half marathon as their official Munster championship races.
This designation, which will entice higher numbers of competitive athletes chasing personal best race times, is a reflection on the growing status of the BHGLR as a premier running event.
“I also wish to acknowledge the huge levels of support from the people of Limerick and beyond who have demonstrated in numbers both participating and watching year on year that the Barringtons Hospital Great Limerick Run is now a firm favourite on the Irish sporting calendar,” he said.
“The public private partnership model has allowed us as race organisers to deliver a world class event to Limerick with an economic value in 2016 estimated now in excess of €5 million to the local economy according to the latest economic impact report. The support and commitment of Barringtons Hospital as title sponsor along with Limerick City & County Council and other commercial and statutory sponsors including sports apparel company Brooks UK & Ireland reflects the confidence that all stakeholders and partners have in the future growth potential of the event.”
In anticipation of the increased demand for places in the children’s ‘UL Sport Run for Fun’ which takes place in the University of Limerick on Saturday, April 30, capacity has been extended to accommodate 3,500 children which is now the largest children’s event nationally.
To date the ‘UL Sport Run for Fun’ has raised over €75,000 for those primary schools with participating children.
Denis Cahalane, managing director of Barringtons, said the hospital is proukd to continue its title sponsorship of “an event that promotes Limerick in a positive manner on a national and international scale.”
From the inaugural race in 2010, over 55,000 people have crossed the finish line, raising €2 million for various charities.
Entries for the marathon, half marathon, and 10km, can be made online at www.greatlimerickrun.com/