Around 10.00 hours the starting shot of the new Ghent marathon has been released. Meanwhile, the marathon runners have all arrived but at the moment thousands of people are also walking the 5 or 10 kilometers. Children will also have the opportunity this afternoon to join the Kids run of 2.5 kilometers.
Among the participants a lot of sports enthusiasts and amateurs, but also 42 organizations that run for charity. For example, about a hundred people from the Sint-Jozef School in Lochristi are traveling with pupil Giske (10) who is fighting leukemia.
The City had asked the organization to avoid the city center, because running competitions in the past caused the necessary traffic disruption. The participants had absolutely no problems with that. "We have walked over bridges and forests, which made it extra physically demanding, but a marvelous trail in nature, we have not missed the inner city for a second, so that you will get to know another side of Ghent", say participants Brecht ( 26) and Gilles (24).
Unlike previous marathons in 1991 and 2010, this edition can count on a mass of people. "We never dared hope that the turnout would be so great," says Ilse Stevens. "We have put a lot of effort into nature and sustainability, which clearly appeals to people, and of course we have also been lucky with the weather." The next edition is already scheduled: 28 October 2018. "