Capital to stage Sumo costume fun run

'Sumos' Toby Murray, left, and Alex Johnson would be well suited to take part in the fun run. Picture: Ian Georgeson

'Sumos' Toby Murray, left, and Alex Johnson would be well suited to take part in the fun run. Picture: Ian Georgeson

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a FUN run which sees ­runners don giant inflatable sumo wrestler costumes is to be staged in Edinburgh for the first time.

The super-size 5k Sumo Run is the latest in a string of novelty charity runs to hit the Capital.

Every jogger taking part gets a fat suit to run – or ­waddle – around the course.

And while they aren’t likely to help people achieve a ­personal best, organisers are hopeful the novelty factor of the new run will result in ­hundreds of people signing up for the planned July 12 event in the Meadows.

Fundraiser Louisa Johnson, who is promoting the event for Link Community Development, said: “I’d say to people, ‘come along, have a bit of a giggle – you will look amazingly inflated and elated’.”

Registration fees cost either £35 or £75 – securing a suit which is then the participant’s to keep.

All of the money raised goes to Link, which works with ­governments and communities to improve the quality of education for children in 
sub-Saharan Africa.

The run has been staged in London since 2010 and also came to Manchester in 2011.

Ms Johnson said the plan was to turn the Edinburgh run into a yearly event – but it will all depend on how keen city residents are to don a sumo suit and perfect their waddle.

“We’re hoping for it to ­become an annual thing,” she said.

“It will be the numbers taking part that decides that. We would certainly like to run it again if it’s popular.”

She hopes runners will be tempted by the possibility of breaking a world record when the Edinburgh event kicks off.

And she says the bizarre race will be perfect for those uncomfortable with the competitive spirit of conventional runs.

“We previously set a world record for the largest ­gathering of people in a sumo suit, which was 205, and we’re hoping to beat that in either Edinburgh or London this year,” she said.

“It’s just really fun – it takes the edge off running.

“You have your hardcore marathon runners and then you have people up for a laugh – a bit of fun on a Saturday morning.

“And at least if you fall over, you won’t be hurt.”

As well as the Edinburgh Marathon the city plays host to a number of other well-supported running events, many of them with a twist.

They include the famous annual Santa Run, when ­adventurous runners take to city centre streets dressed as Father Christmas in a bid to raise crucial funds for charity.

For more information on this year’s Edinburgh sumo run and Link Community ­Development, visit www.sumorun.com.

johnpaul.holden@edinburghnews.com