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The ‘Nation’s Race’ Returns


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It’s being billed as the day the UAE runs, when an expected 3,500 people fly their colours in a marathon of national unity.

The annual Zayed Marathon – held in honour of the Father of the Nation, H.H. Sheikh Zayed – was today announced as taking place at Yas Marina Circuit on 19th March, signalling the opening of online registration.

For runners of all abilities throughout the country, the race is one of the standout sporting events of the year – an ideal chance to get fit and active in a fun environment and to run together on a day of national celebration.

All proceeds registration fee will go to SEHA (Abu Dhabi Health Services Company) for health diseases prevention, of which Sheikh Zayed was an avid supporter.

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There are two distances around Yas Marina Circuit, a 10K and 5K run, as well as a 5K “Hand Cycle” race for wheelchair competitors. Young runners will be invited to compete in the 1k and 3k Kids RUN, while a strong line-up of experienced athletes will feature in the ProFIELD event.

The race is organised by the Armed Forces Officers Club in collaboration with Yas Marina Circuit, Abu Dhabi Sports Council, SEHA (Abu Dhabi Health Services Company). These major Abu Dhabi stakeholders are working in partnership again to support the run in order to foster healthier and fitter communities, a sense of inclusiveness among the UAE’s residents and to celebrate the country’s national identity.

“Of all the fantastic sporting events in the UAE throughout the year, the Zayed Marathon stands out as the run for the people,” said Lt General Mohammad Al Kaabi, Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Armed Forces Officers Club.

“It’s an opportunity for friends and families to enjoy a fun day out, to get fit and healthy, and to honour the legacy of H.H Sheikh Zayed by supporting a cause that was so dear to him.”

To help people prepare for the big day and to support all entrants, Yas Marina Circuit has organised a free-to-join training schedule. Starting on February 13, the six-week programme features runs at Yas Island Parkland North, Mushrif park, Zayed Sports City and Al Bateen on Saturdays, Mondays and Wednesdays respectively. There will even be specialised training clinics for kids.

The Zayed Marathon presents an opportunity to gauge the health and fitness of those taking part. All entrants will have their BMI index and other data measured on site as part of the Yas Marina Circuit’s ongoing ‘Big Data’ health audit initiative to benchmark the UAE’s activity habits. The information collected will add to the existing knowledge base for use in future health planning strategies in the emirate.

Total prize money will this year total AED 88,000, with cash prizes awarded for first, second and third places in all adult categories. Each competitor will receive a race number, timing chip, finisher shirt, and finisher medal.

Al Tareq Al Ameri, CEO of Yas Marina Circuit, said he was delighted to see the return of the Zayed Marathon and urged everyone from children and first timers to regular athletes to register while places remain.

He said: “Yas Marina Circuit hosts numerous events that encourage the community to lead an active lifestyle, and the Zayed Marathon is undoubtedly one of the most special. It has a feel good atmosphere that’s hard to match and you really feel a sense of people’s pride in the UAE.

“We are looking forward to welcoming members of the community of all ages and abilities to what will be a fun day out with plenty of entertainment. And, as always, Yas Marina Circuit is supporting participants every step of the way to get in the best possible shape ahead of race day.”

To register you, your family and friends for the 2016 Zayed Marathon, please visit: www.yasmarinacircuit.com

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