Two Oceans to go ahead less than two weeks before ‘day zero’

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JOHANNESBURG, January 25 (ANA) – The Two Oceans Marathon is going ahead in Cape Town at the end of March, organisers said on Thursday, but they have assured residents that there will be no showers at the end of the race for runners and that they will not use municipal water during the event.

Cape Town is experiencing a water crisis and restrictions implemented so far have not staved off Day Zero – projected for 12 April – when taps run dry.

Organisers said in a statement that they had spent a year planning for the 2018 Old Mutual Two Oceans Marathon (OMTOM) set to take place on 31 March 2018.

“And as one of the City of Cape Town’s premier events on the calendar, the ongoing severe drought has presented a harsh reality for the event, our stakeholders and participants,” said the statement

“We are aware of the concerns voiced by worried citizens, and we take saving water – and the event’s overall water impact on the City – incredibly seriously.

“We have been, and are currently working closely with the City of Cape Town and their disaster management team, as well as our sponsors, to put the appropriate provisions and solutions in place for the 49th OMTOM event as part of a very comprehensive water management plan.”

The organisers said they will not use any municipal water during the event, there will be no showers at the finish and the number of refreshment stations will be reduced.

“There will be refill stations available for hydration pack users – and we encourage all runners to be as self-sufficient as possible,” said the statement.

Allaying fears of a sudden drain on the city’s scarce water resources as thousands of runners from other parts come to Cape Town for the marathon, the organisers said: “We understand that Capetonians are worried, especially because approximately half of the entry field are from outside of the Cape Town Metropole.

“However, we are also required to consider the economic boost for the City (over R675-million, together with thousands of jobs being created during this time) and the charities that partner with the event (over R3-million is raised every year).

“While we are working hard behind the scenes to finalise these details, we as fellow Capetonians remain fully committed to saving water and use less than our allocated 50 litres per person per day.”

– African News Agency (ANA)