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Several of Dubai’s main roads and thoroughfares will close for several hours when more than 20,000 athletes take to the streets for the 2014 Standard Chartered Dubai Marathon on Friday (January 24).
In a combined effort between Dubai Police, the RTA and the organisers of the Standard Chartered Dubai Marathon, runners will face a traffic-free route that will provide both safety and security at the largest mass-participation sporting event in the Middle East.
Held under the patronage of HH Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of the Dubai Sports Council, the Standard Chartered Dubai Marathon allows weekend runners the opportunity to run alongside many of the world’s elite long distance runners.
And while the chance to compete on the same playing field as the running elite is unique to the event, it throws up a number of challenges for the government of Dubai and its associated bodies such as Dubai Police, the RTA, the Dubai Sports Council, Dubai Health Authority and Dubai Municipality.
“Ever year we enjoy unrivalled support from Dubai Police’s Protection and Security, CID and Traffic departments who work together to keep Dubai’s roads running smoothly on the day of the Marathon,” said Event Director Peter Connerton, whose team have worked closely with Brigadier Ahmed Khalfan Al Mansoori, Lt. Colonel Juma Bin Suwaidan and Major Salem Mohammed Salem Al Marri from Dubai Police and the RTA’s Engineer Hussain Al Banna.
“We also receive wonderful support from the Dubai Sports Council, under the guidance of its chairman HH Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum and vice chairman HE Mattar Al Tayer, which has given us unwavering backing and encouragement over the years,” added Connerton.
In addition to ensuring that the runners in the Marathon, the 10km Road Race and the 3km Fun Run have a safe and secure running environment, the government departments also ensure there is as little disruption as possible for residents living along or nearby the route.
While the Jumeirah Beach Road will have phased closures from Thursday night with phased re-opening as the marathon progresses on Friday morning, there will also be closures on Umm Suqeim Road where the start and finish lines are located. During the build up to Friday’s event, construction workers will be putting the final touches to the start and finish lanes on Umm Suqeim Road and motorists are advised to avoid that area where possible.
Supported by the Dubai Sports Council, Adidas, Dubai Eye 103.8FM, Masafi, Dubai Holding, Dubai Police, the RTA and Dubai Municipality, the Standard Chartered Dubai Marathon is still accepting late entries for the Marathon and 10km Road Race only at Al Johara Ballroom, Mina A Salam today and tomorrow (Jan 21-22) from 10am to 7pm and on Thursday from 10am to 5pm. Online registration has closed.