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Half marathon draws 2,500 to Formentera this weekend

mitja marato2015This morning in the plenary hall of the Formentera Council, representatives of the administration's office of sport discussed the particulars of the Formentera Half Marathon ('la Mitja Marató'), scheduled for this Saturday, 16 May. Runners must choose between two different modalities: the 21-kilometre half marathon, with its start at the La Mola lighthouse, or a shorter race, which puts runners on an 8-kilometre course that starts in the town of Sant Ferran. Both runs start at 5:30 p.m. and organisers estimate that the first runners will begin trickling into La Savina at somewhere around six in the evening.

Councillor of sport Sergio Jiménez announced: “Within six days, the marathon's 2,500 available spaces were all filled. Last year, there were only 2,014 spots and it took 11 days to fill them. The popularity of this footrace is definitely on the rise”.

As Jiménez continued: “Due to the sheer number of people this run draws, it is very important for tourism in Formentera; it is one of the star activities on the pre-season agenda. Our mitja marató has become one of the most tourist-oriented runs in the Balearic community, and without a doubt the most important in the Pitiüsas”.

Manuel Hernández, director general of Unisport Consulting, explained the chief difference at this year's run would be the closure of the main road to vehicle traffic starting in El Pilar de la Mola, stressing, “it is very important people know that this stretch will be car-free”. Traffic on PM820 on the El Pilar-Sant Ferran and Sant Ferran-Es Pujols-La Savina segments will be blocked starting at four p.m.

Organisers added that, “despite obvious inconveniences for the local population, people recognise that this change will assure a safer and more pleasant running experience and have been very gracious”.  

Alejandro Marí, a representative from Trasmapi, which is providing transport to participants of the mitja marató, announced that the company was adding an eleven-p.m. ferry on the Friday evening prior to the run and that the Castaví Jet ferry would make an extra round-trip on Saturday – “to make things easier for runners going to and leaving the island”.

New T-shirt design

Sergio Jiménez noted that the bag and T-shirt included among this year's half marathon paraphernalia would showcase a design created exclusively for the occasion by Oriol Moragrega, a vendor at the craft market in La Mola. “This was something we wanted improve on – differentiating our material from what is normally used at other footraces – because this is a very special race. We figured: 'We have extremely strong community of tradesmen and artisans on the island, why not collaborate with them on this?”


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