In 2016 the popular Bristol Half Marathon and 10k road races will become part of the UK's biggest mass participation events series, Great Run.
The newly named Great Bristol Half Marathon and Great Bristol 10k will join the Great Run series, which includes the UK's biggest running event, the iconic Great North Run.
After a competitive tender process Bristol City Council has chosen the Great Run Company as a partner to deliver the events. They will focus on developing the half marathon and the 10k with the aim of increasing participation in both events, raising Bristol's profile within the running world and attracting more visitors to the city from across the region and around the UK.
George Ferguson, Mayor of Bristol said, “Bristol has a great running tradition. RunBristol represents 27 years of running in Bristol and both the half marathon and the 10k are a highlight of the city's sporting calendar, attracting tens of thousands of runners every year.
“The Great Run Company is a dynamic organisation with a proven track record of delivering successful mass-participation sporting events, including the Great North Run, Great Manchester Run and Great Birmingham Run.
“We are looking forward to building on the great work already achieved by RunBristol and developing these events even further in partnership with Great Run Company, helping to raise Bristol's profile as a city of sport.”
The 2016 Great Bristol 10k will take place on Sunday 15 May followed by the Great Bristol Half Marathon on Sunday 25 September.
Mark Hollinshead, Group Chief Executive of the Great Run Company said, “We're thrilled to be working with Bristol City Council and look forward to welcoming Bristolians into the Great Run family.
“However first and foremost, these events belong to Bristol and the people of Bristol who can be rightly proud that they host two of the best running events in the UK.
“With over three decades of experience in organising some of the world's best known races, we're planning to use our knowledge to enhance these already fantastic events.
“Our national profile will encourage more runners from around the country, along with their friends and family, to visit this amazing city.”
To celebrate the introduction of the events into the Great Run Series, the Great Run Company is offering a £10 discount to the first 1,000 people to sign up for both events.
Event director Andy Graffin at the Great Run Company explained, “The timing of the events means that the 10k is the perfect goal to set yourself at the start of the year, if you want to complete the half marathon in September.
“We're hoping the discount will also encourage existing 10k runners to step up to the half marathon distance and train with us to complete both runs next year.”
The new-look events were launched today at a reception in the city, attended by Jo Pavey – the European 10,000m champion said, "I've taken part in many Great Run events throughout my career and they are always brilliant family occasions with a wonderful atmosphere for both beginners and experienced runners alike.
"It's fantastic news for the city that they will be coming to Bristol."
An expected 22,000 participants will take part across both events.
Colin Sexstone, Chairman of the Bristol Partnership for Sport and Active Recreation, said: “RunBristol is a jewel-in-the-crown of our city's sporting life and the Bristol 10k and Half Marathon play a major part in inspiring and encouraging Bristolians to take part in sport and to lead healthier and happier lives.
“I am delighted the Great Run Company will be working with Bristol City Council and other members of our new Bristol Partnership for Sport and Active Participation to raise our city's profile within the road racing community.
“The partnership will soon be joining forces with Sport England, the West of England Sport Trust and other partners to enable even more people to benefit from sport.”
John Hirst, Chief Executive of Destination Bristol, said, “Bristol 10k and half marathon have become hugely popular annual events in Bristol, partly because their routes take in some of our city's most iconic sights, providing a great backdrop for runners and spectators. The Great Run Company has an impressive track record of race organising, so we're looking forward to these two events becoming even more popular under their expert care.“
Both events are now open for entry. For more information or to enter please visit www.greatrun.org for more information.