Muscat, May 15th 2019: Details of the 2020 edition of the Sultanate’s largest and most popular running event, Al Mouj Muscat Marathon, have been unveiled in a press conference today marking the opening of registrations for the 2020 event. The next edition of the Sultanate’s two-day festival of running will take place on the weekend of 17th and 18th January 2020 and aims to grow the appeal to international runners and get more Omani youth active.
Under slogan #RunWithUs, the national campaign comes in light of the rising levels of diabetes, obesity and hypertension in Oman. Seven top athletes from a variety of sport disciplines have joined forces as inspirational ambassadors for the event to highlight this mission, Oman’s top goalkeeper Ali Al Habsi, sportscar racing driver Ahmad Al Harthi, Olympic showjumper Sultan Al Touqi, sprinter Barakat Al Harthi, tennis player Fatma Al Nabhani, sailor and Olympic hopeful Musab Al Hadi. They, alongside global ambassador and world record holder Paula Radcliffe, will act as role models to add to the collaborative effort by the event organisers, Oman Sail, and supporters to engage a bigger segment of the youth population to get active.
Speaking about the new campaign, Omani Goalie, Ali Al Habsi said, “Al Mouj Muscat Marathon is the perfect opportunity to engage the youth on the importance of being active. The annual event provides a fun platform for people to challenge themselves and work towards a fitness goal. My children took part in the kids run last year and really enjoyed the experience. I look forward to running in the event next year.”
Tennis star Fatma Al Nabhani added, “It is an honour to be working with al Mouj Muscat Marathon on a campaign that brings the whole nation together for a healthier future. The risk of not being physically active is too high. I would love to see more women participating in the event, because nothing is beyond our reach. I have never done anything like this before, but I love to challenge myself and hope that many people will join me at the event.”
H.E. Younis Al Siyabi, Chairman of the Oman Athletics Association (OAA), said: “We are proud to add our support to the Al Mouj Muscat Marathon and its important goal of encouraging people in Oman to become more active. It is completely in step with our goals and objectives and we applaud its central role in next year’s event.
“At the heart of the OAA is the mission to promote sport and athletics across the Sultanate, and the Al Mouj Muscat Marathon has a very important role to play in that endeavour.”
Opening day, on January 17th, will feature the main marathon event along with the half-marathon and 10km races. Day two, on January 18th, will feature the popular 5km Run and the Kids’ Run. All events will be hosted around Al Mouj Muscat, which will again provide a striking background for the range of athletic endeavours.
Nasser Al Sheibani, CEO of Al Mouj Muscat, said: “We are absolutely delighted to be the title sponsor of this remarkable event for another year. The Muscat Marathon is a great match for our ambitions at Al Mouj Muscat to promote a healthy lifestyle for our multi-national residents and many visitors. It has become a great spectacle which has been embraced by the community as a whole.”
David Graham, CEO of Oman Sail said, “We have been delighted to see the tremendous growth of the event over the past three years which has been a result of the dedicated work of many entities around Oman and the generous support of our commercial partners, Al Mouj Muscat and Port Sohar.
The benefits of having an active lifestyle are very well proven and documented. It is no coincidence that 93% of the CEOs of Fortune 500 companies played regular sport in their youth. Sports have far reaching benefits for individuals and society as a whole and we are really grateful to the Omani sporting icons for helping us with the mission of getting the youth active.”
The 42.195km marathon and subsidiary events are all certified by world-running organisation AIMS to conform to International Association of Athletic Federation (IAAF) standards and offer a great variety for runners. “The mix of events and distances has proved a great success and very popular with runners of all ages and abilities,” said Ahmed Al Malki, Chairman of the Muscat Road Runners, who organised the first Muscat Marathon in 2012. We have been delighted to see the tremendous growth of the event over the past three years, in large part due to the organisational expertise by Oman Sail, the dedicated work by more than 170 volunteers and the generous support of Al Mouj Muscat”.
Registration is now open and can be done through the official event website: https://muscatmarathon.om/