Revamped Plymouth half marathon route unveiled
THE revamped route for this year's Plymouth half marathon has been unveiled.
The new 13.1 mile route will incorporate a number of changes including a more gradual hill climb which race organisers hope will mean faster race times.
Runners will once again start on the Hoe taking off at 9am from the Promenade running along the seafront to the Barbican.
As the route wraps around the harbour, runners will follow a flat, straight course along Gdynia Way.
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It's after this point that regular participants at the annual half marathon will notice a change as the course will take a new anti-clockwise direction, as runners follow the course along Billacombe Road and Elburton road giving a more gradual climb.
Click the image for a larger version of the map
Race organiser Amy Budd, from sports events company GO2, said the new course offers better views as well as a chance for competitive racers to improve on their finishing times.
She said: "This new course direction includes a gentler climb at mile four and five and a new downhill stretch with estuary views through Saltram Park from mile seven, spurring runners on to the return journey."
Organisers have also been keen to avoid the funnelling and congestion experienced in past years as the athletes file through the underpass from Elburton Road on to Haye Road between mile five and six.
This year runners will travel along a sectioned-off part of the roundabout without having to use the underpass to cross the junction.
Amy explained: "As the half marathon grows, we want to avoid the Elburton Road underpass, where there can be congestion during the race.
"We hope this will provide the potential for a quicker route and more enjoyable race experience."
The revised course is also good news for Plymouth's residents as Elburton Road to the east of the city will be reopened earlier than in the past.
After the descent from Saltram Park runners will filter across Laira Bridge Road, complete a loop up and around Embankment Road before starting the final three mile stretch to the finish line on the Hoe.
Amy believes the new route is an ideal excuse for former participants to have another go: "The Plymouth half has an amazing festival atmosphere as regular 'halfers' know. If you've run before why not give the new course a try?".
A full list of road closures is available online at www.plymouthhalf marathon.com
To see a map of the new route visit The Herald website at www.thisisplymouth.co.uk