The first competitive marathon and the first to be staged in the county since 1983 took place last Sunday in and around the Letterkenny area and it proved to be a resounding success. 744 total participants of the half and full marathons experienced perfect conditions for marathon running as the sun shone throughout the competition.
Coupled with a light breeze, the organisers couldn’t have hoped for better weather as a fantastic crowd of enthusiastic supporters lined the route to cheer on the runners and give the event a unique Donegal feel to it. Entries far exceeded the organisers’ target of 500 entries to reach almost 850 with numbers in the region 140 tackling the full event with the rest opting for the half marathon option.
It was no coincidence that it was reported that almost every hotel room in Donegal was sold out last weekend. Runners came from as far afield as Australia, Germany, Switzerland, Spain, Germany, the UK, and Northern Ireland and throughout the Republic of Ireland.
Ciaran Martin from Donegal County Council and member of the Organising Committee stated, “All round, it was a fantastic day with the support of the general public and in particular, all of the volunteers, we have successfully staged an event that everyone in Donegal should be proud of.
We would also like to thank the public for their patience with the inevitable traffic disruptions but we are glad to report that everything went off very smoothly”.
It was a proud moment for all concerned as local athletics legend, Danny McDaid, got the runners under way at 10.15 am.
The committee would like to thank all the trade that sponsored or supported the event including- Donegal County Council, Letterkenny Town Council, Magees Pharmacy, Station House Hotel, James Doherty Mini buses, MICAD Security, Gortlee Tool Hire, Greenes Shoes, The Villa Rose Hotel, Cristeph Gallery, Divers-Toyota Sales and Services, Donegal Volunteer Centre, Relay for Life, Lions club, Letterkenny Chamber of Commerce, Athletics Ireland, Letterkennny Athletic Club, the Volunteers, Gardai, Donegal Red Cross, and the staff of Aura Leisure Centre.