The Great Run Company, the UK mass participation provider, has announced that Simplyhealth Great Aberdeen Run will return in 2018 for a second outing.
With entries now open, the next event will take place on Sunday 26 August 2018 with the 10k, half marathon and Family Run all returning.
The inaugural Simplyhealth Great Aberdeen Run, held in August this year, saw over 7,000 people pound the pavements of the Granite City in the half marathon and 10k. The race featured the most scenic areas of the city, including Brig O’Balgownie and Old Aberdeen.
Runners, joggers and walkers travelled from as far as Singapore, South Africa, and the United States to take part in the race this summer. The organiser estimated £900,000 was raised for charity.
Union Street was packed with thousands of people, and participants can expect another scenic spectator-lined route in 2018, with many of the city’s landmarks on show.
The Simplyhealth Great Aberdeen Run is from the organisers of the Simplyhealth Great North Run, the world’s biggest half marathon, held every year between Newcastle and South Shields.
It is being delivered in partnership with Aberdeen City Council, VisitAberdeenshire, Aberdeen Inspired, Aberdeen & Grampian Chamber of Commerce and is being supported by the Aberdeen City Centre Masterplan.
Kerry Simpson, communications manager at The Great Run Company, commented: “From the GB athletes leading the field to the youngest participants in the Family Run, this summer the city of Aberdeen celebrated the thousands of people running for fun, fitness and fundraising.
“It was an incredible sight in the city, and we’re looking forward to the return of the Simplyhealth Great Aberdeen Run.”
Next year will also see the return of the Business Challenge, supported by Aberdeen & Grampian Chamber of Commerce, with companies competing for the prize of fastest business in the 10k, as well as the half marathon.
“As well as the economic benefits, the Great Aberdeen Run provides a real positive focus on health, wellbeing, charity and community and the Business Challenge is the ideal way for organisations to get involved,” commented Russell Borthwick, the Chamber chief executive.
Borthwick continued: “We know there are some friendly rivalries in the region, so it will be interesting to see these teams pitted against each other and would encourage as many businesses as possible to sign up.”
Commenting on the impact of the inaugural event, Aberdeen City Council Co-Leader, Jenny Laing, said: “The atmosphere for the inaugural run was incredible, the feedback from the running community was very positive, and we were delighted by the support for the event by residents and visitors to the city.”
Laing said the run showcased Aberdeen as a major events location. “Our Aberdeen 365 Events Programme demonstrates the commitment of our local and national partners that support our vision of development and sustainability of culture in the north-east.
“The programme provides an opportunity to promote and enhance the long-term economic prosperity of Aberdeen and the wider region by attracting visitors, both local and from further afield, to the city.”
The response to the Great Aberdeen Run has been fantastic. Adrian Watson, chief executive of Aberdeen Inspired, said: “The first event this year was hugely popular. We can’t wait for it to return next year and showcase our great city to a wide-ranging audience.
“Aberdeen Inspired will always actively support events that we see will make a difference, and this exciting event certainly does. The impact of events to local businesses is essential, in terms of bringing people into the city centre and the positive knock-on effect of that.”
Good for tourism
As an outdoor event that takes place across the city, the inaugural Simplyhealth Great Aberdeen Run created an opportunity to boost the local tourism.
Chris Foy, chief executive of VisitAberdeenshire, explained: “The inaugural Simplyhealth Great Aberdeen Run captured the imagination of people locally and internationally alike, and created an exciting weekend to be in Aberdeen.
“Scotland’s North East is a vibrant and lively place during the summer, with plenty of outdoor activities to entertain families and groups of all ages. The Simplyhealth Great Aberdeen Run is the perfect excuse to extend your stay and explore the local area,” Foy concluded.