Claims Hull marathon route was half a mile short
ORGANISERS of Hull's first marathon are investigating claims the route was half a mile short.
The event, on Easter Sunday, attracted about 1,400 runners and was well-supported.
However, changes made to the route through Pickering Park have resulted in more than one runner saying the course was not 26.2 miles.
Paul Amies, 39, travelled from his home in Eastrington, East Yorkshire, to take part in the race.
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He said: "It was my first marathon and it was the only one I was planning to run because it hurts my knees.
"I measured the original route a few times while training and it was correct.
"But when I had finished the race, I saw some comments on a blog that it was half a mile short."
A competitor on a forum on the Runner's World website had measured it and said: "No posting of numbers and chips and no mile markers, a major crime in a marathon, runners need to know their distance.
"Also, it was half a mile short on my Garmin Satnav. If these could be sorted, this would be a good race."
Mr Amies said when he too checked it on a Run My Route planner, it backed up the runner's concerns.
He said: "The original route took runners left into Pickering Park and left again onto the street before entering the park again.
"But the new course went straight into the park and around the pond.
"I understand it was the first event and the volunteers and stewards did a great job but, surely, the route round is a major building block of the race.
"It will be disappointing if it was short and I will feel like I haven't run a marathon."
Event manager Karl Jackson, of Toro CSC events, which organised the run, said the route had been thoroughly checked and was correct on the day of the race.
He said: "There was a very small change to the route and when we measured it again, it was the same distance.
"Some of the route planners people use online are not accurate. We made sure it was correct but I will look into it."
A number of runners also became lost on the route and the first two women to cross the finishing line took joint first place.
Mr Jackson said: "About three to five runners made a mistake and turned early on Victoria Dock.
"This was cleared up straight away and, over the next week, we are reviewing the race.
"As part of the procedure, we will be speaking with Hull City Council and East Riding Council, as well as the emergency services and medical and stewarding companies involved.
"The event went very well but there are a few things we will learn from.
"There were no major casualties and I have had hundreds of e-mails from people saying how much they enjoyed the race."
Mr Jackson said early indications show the event raised thousands of pounds for charity.
He said: "We are earmarking Easter Sunday again for next year's race. It worked out well and brought a lot of people into the city centre.
"It would normally have been quiet but coffee shops and restaurants opened and it was great for the local economy."