NN Mission Marathon moves to Twente Airport on Sunday 18 April
NN Mission Marathon will go ahead as planned on April 18 and will be moved from Hamburg to Enschede, The Netherlands, on the specially designed course on Twente Airport which will be closed for general audience. More than 70 athletes will try to secure their spot for the Summer Olympics in Tokyo.
NN Mission Marathon was first planned on 11 April in Hamburg, but the current COVID-19 situation forced the race organizers Hamburg Marathon and Global Sports Communication to postpone the event with a week and also secure a different location.
Current World record-holder Eliud Kipchoge will also be on the starting list, the Kenyan will use NN Mission Marathon to prepare for the Olympic Marathon, which takes place on 7 and 8 August in Sapporo, Japan.
Frank Thaleiser, race director NN Mission Marathon, explains: "We are very happy that, with permission from the authorities, the NN Mission Marathon can now take place on Sunday April 18th. Since last week, we have been really busy trying to find an alternative location. We were grateful to the many organisations around the world who offered to help us out. The importance of giving athletes a fair chance to qualify or prepare for the Olympic Games gets a lot of support.”
Sandra Melief, director Enschede Marathon, about the race: “It is a dream come true. World-class athletes in Enschede. I am super proud. We are very happy to welcome these athletes and we will do everything possible so they can run their best possible time on a flat and fast course.”
In these challenging times and with the road race calendar for the first half of 2021 decimated by the pandemic, the involved parties were keen to arrange the race to provide a much-needed competitive opportunity for the athletes. The one-off marathon has been organised to serve up an opportunity for athletes to run a fast race and in many cases to help secure a qualification mark for the rescheduled Tokyo Olympic Games.