PRESS RELEASE: Queenstown International Marathon
Record numbers will set off in a variety of events at this Saturday’s Air New Zealand Queenstown International Marathon, with 9720 competing in the five events, bringing with them many more thousands of supporters, family and friends to the Queenstown Lakes District.
Race Director Nicole Fairweather is looking forward to another spectacular day on Saturday, one that delivers a significant economic impact but also one that leaves a legacy in the community.
“The Air New Zealand Queenstown International Marathon has quickly become established as a must-do event on the international marathon calendar, leaving a significant economic footprint on the regions tourism and hospitality sectors.
“But for us it is more than that, it is an event that is embraced by the local community and one that does good for that community. We have more than 500 volunteers, many of whom represent community groups, organizations and schools, without their support and engagement with the event the event would not be possible.
“In return we will assist with fundraising, returning $18,000 into those local community groups and making a difference to people’s lives. This is a win/win situation, we are provided with helping hands and we in turn provide a platform for fundraising and profile, all of which benefits the wider community.”
Air New Zealand will help deliver the thousands of runners and their supporters into the region, with 90% travelling from outside Central Otago to compete, with over 1,800 international runners coming to Queenstown.
Air New Zealand Chief Revenue Officer Cam Wallace says, “The event has seen staggering growth since the inaugural marathon in late 2014, with a record 9720 people taking part this weekend.”
“It’s great to see such strong interest in the marathon in its fourth year, with competitors heading to Queenstown from throughout New Zealand and from 40 overseas locations, including more than 1200 from Australia, as well as runners from the US, UK and China.”
As well as the investment into the community through the volunteer programme, the Air New Zealand Queenstown International Marathon has as its official charity the Queenstown Trails Trust, an organization focused on creating a world class trail network for walking and cycling.
With every New Zealand Sotheby’s International Realty Half and Air New Zealand Marathon entry, a donation goes to the Queenstown Trails Trust for the maintenance and further development of trails throughout the Wakatipu Basin. Runners also have the ability to further support the Queenstown Trails Trust by donating when prompted through the online registration system.
CEO Mark Williams describes a perfect partnership, one that leaves a legacy year-round for locals and visitors alike, with a further $40,000 expected to be donated thanks to this year’s event.
“We are absolutely thrilled to continue our status as the chosen charity for the Air New Zealand Queenstown Marathon, with proceeds from event donations being one of our major sources of funding to look after and build more stunning trails for the region. Through enhancing and expanding our trail network, we can both connect our communities and provide a world-class visitor experience, as well as provide the perfect arena for future events.”