Ironkids running events launched in Scotland for first time
As Scotland continues to celebrate the role of young people in 2018, IRONMAN have downsized their iconic event to accomodate kids.
The series of three events are described as "fun and family-focused" fitness events for energetic children have been announced to coincide with this year's IRONMAN 70.3.
Children aged from three to fourteen will be encouraged to take part in pint-sized IRONMAN events ranging from 500 metres to two kilometres.
The three events will take place in locations in and around Edinburgh over the weekend of June 29 to July 1 and are a key part of Scotland’s Year of Young People 2018 celebrations.
The first of the three events takes place on the Friday at Dalkeith Country Park and gets underway at 4pm. The day after the event moves to Preston Links in East Lothian and will run from 11am. As the IRONMAN 70.3 comes to a close, kids will be able to take part in a final IRONKIDS event at Holyrood Park from 3pm.
Prospective participants can register for the event at eu.ironman.com - entries cost Â£4.00 and the hope is to encourage at least 1,000 children to take part in the run.
Each child who takes part in the event will be rewarded with a medal and t-shirt on completing the event.
Year of the Young People
Paul Bush OBE, VisitScotland's Director of Events, said of the arrival of the event: “We are delighted to be supporting IRONKIDS Scotland make their first visit north of the border through dedicated Year of Young People funding.
"The event is a wonderful addition to the already announced IRONMAN 70.3 Edinburgh, providing young people with an opportunity to participate in a unique, fun experience within their local community. I’m sure it will create a wonderful family atmosphere across each of the three locations.”
The race will coincide with Scotland's Year of the Young People- and Bush was keen to underline the role that young people can play in Scotland.
“Scotland is celebrating the Year of Young People in 2018 where the spotlight is shining on young people’s talents and contributions, giving them the opportunity to show the world what they are made of.
"Working with the events and festivals industry in Scotland, 2018 provides us with a special opportunity to showcase both our rich annual events programme and a host of brand new events which further reinforce Scotland’s position as the perfect stage for events."
'Something for runners of all abilities'
The race has been set up to be as inclusive and family-friendly as possible with race distances ranging from 50 metres to 2 kilometres.
Councillor Donald Wilson, Edinburgh’s Culture and Communities Convener, noted the potential health benefits of the race's introduction.
“As a keen marathon runner I know first-hand the benefits physical activity has on both your body and overall wellbeing. I think this family event is a great idea for encouraging young people to lead a healthy and active lifestyle, and have great fun while they’re at it.
"I wish the organisers all the best and would urge as many young people to sign up for this fantastic event as possible – with races from 50 metres to 2km, it really does offer something for runners of all abilities.”