A new state of the art time system is among the plans that the organizers for the 2015 Run Barbados Marathon Series will put in place to rebrand the event.
During Friday morning’s launch of the event, chief executive officer of Barbados Tourism Marketing Inc (BTMI) Williams Griffith announced that this year’s event would be spearheaded by husband and wife team Zary and Kristine Evelyn of Island Races who are responsible for organizing the successful and well-known Barbados Open Water Festival along with Peter Gibbs.
Director of Run Barbados Zary Evelyn explained that bringing back the marathon, which has been absent for three years, should play a major role in boosting the event which the BTMI is seeking to rebrand and rejuvenate for 2015 and beyond.
“It is our belief that the marathon is the key to any road race series and we did not want Barbados to be left out of that. So we thought with good marketing and promotion Barbados can once again be seen as a top destination for marathons. It is on the calendar for most of the other run series around the Caribbean, so that being the case we didn’t want Barbados to be left out. We want to also give people many reasons to come to Barbados and having the marathon as part of the series will increase the profile of the series and widen the net of runners looking to come here,” he said.
According to Evelyn the December 4 to 6 event is geared towards different age groups and they intend for it to be a family affair this year.
Griffith said he has given the experts the mandate to raise the profile of Run Barbados as a major sports tourism initiative. He explained that going forward one of their primary performance indicator would be the extent to which they were able to attract visitors to the island while bringing back a high level of spectatorship.
“We will be devising a number of ways through which to engage both Barbadians and visitors throughout the race weekend. Run Barbados has been a staple on our national calendar of events and a strong sports tourism brand for Barbados since its inception in 1983. Our intention is to rejuvenate this legacy brand at its core with a new business model.
“BTMI will support them [marketing experts] in the execution of global marketing efforts which will include promotion at international sporting events and leading sports publications. We also believe that we can increase our market share in the southern Caribbean and will be working through the Caribbean and Latin America to raise our profile in this region,” Griffith said.
Six-time winner Hugh Jones of England has expressed interest for this year’s event that will proceed with a Night Fun Mile that will start Friday, December 4 at 8 p.m. to facilitate greater participation among a wider number of age groups.
On Saturday afternoon the 10k and 5k will take place. On Sunday the grand finale will be both the full marathon and half marathon races. Persons wishing to participate can check the Run Barbados website or their Facebook page.