Richmond RUNFEST

British Athletics has republished the selection policy for the postponed Tokyo Olympic Games updated with the new marathon trial event which will now take place on a multi-lap course at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew on Friday 26 March 2021. The event will also double as the British Marathon Championships for 2021 with invited athletes gunning for a Tokyo Olympic spot later on that year.

The trial race will be part of a weekend of events organised by Richmond RUNFEST who will also put on a socially distanced ‘Richmond Marathon and AIR:10K’ in South West London over the weekend. Last month, the Richmond RUNFEST team successfully put on two socially distanced 10K’s for over 3,500 runners on a course that is known for being sheltered and flat.

Tom Bedford, Richmond RUNFEST Race Director, said “In 2013, Richmond RUNFEST was created as a London Olympic Legacy event and it is a privilege for us to help our country’s top marathon runners book an Olympic place for Tokyo in 2021.

The borough of Richmond-Upon-Thames is the epicentre of British running history. It was the birthplace of the London Marathon and parkrun. Mo Farah was finely tuned up as an Olympic gold machine at St Mary’s University and even the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew played a part in raising the Olympic spirit going into the London 2012, celebrating ‘100 days to go’ and the Olympic Torch relay.

The Olympic Marathon Trials outside of the London Marathon is a unique but exciting prospect and during the hardest of years we hope that Richmond will once again rejuvenate the Olympic spirit of 2012 and make history again!”

Cherry Alexander OBE, Major Events Director said “We’re delighted to confirm the British Championships incorporating the Olympic Marathon Trial race is to be held at Kew Gardens. It is an iconic venue and lends itself well to a marathon course over multiple laps.

It’s great to be able to tap into the expertise of working with Tom who has experience of delivering races at the venue. His knowledge of what the athletes will need from the race will ensure we are putting them at the heart of the event and providing a great platform on which to perform well.”

The British Championships and Olympic Trials race are invitational only but runners can still enter the ‘Richmond Marathon’ on the 27 March and ‘Air:10K’ by visiting www.richmondrunfest.co.uk