Wineathlon organisers have their sights set on Edinburgh

A CONTROVERSIAL running event which sees wine handed to participants at rest stops is being lined up for the Capital.

By The Newsroom
Monday, 18th January 2016, 10:17 am
Updated Monday, 18th January 2016, 10:21 am
The Wineathlon event in Yorkshire last year, where wine is offered to participants as a substitute for water. Picture: James Kirby
The Wineathlon event in Yorkshire last year, where wine is offered to participants as a substitute for water. Picture: James Kirby

Organisers of Wineathlon have their eye on Edinburgh after receiving an overwhelming response to the first Scottish event due to take place in Glasgow later this year.

Runners, walkers and probably eventually crawlers will be coaxed around a six-mile course with samples of red, white and rosé wine on offer at checkpoints.

Those behind the event insist the idea is not to get drunk, but to put the “fun back into running”.

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Picture: James Kirby

Wane Law, managing director of organiser Team OA, said the Glasgow event had sold out all 600 tickets, and with a 200-strong waiting list he was hoping to bring Wineathlon to the Capital this year.

He said: “We originally didn’t have plans to bring the event to Edinburgh, but in light of how popular it’s been with people in Glasgow, it’s definitely a possibility.

“At the moment I can’t say when because there is a lot of permits and permissions we have to get first, but if it isn’t later this year, it could potentially be 2017.

“We are capping entries at 600 to ensure we can run a safe event and it means people will be desperate to take part next year.”

Picture: James Kirby

Wineathlon has proved a huge hit in various English towns, with the Glasgow event due to take place on September 24.

But the plans have attracted fierce criticism, with NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde launching opposition.

Organisers have said that water will also be available at resting spots.

But Alison Douglas, chief executive of Alcohol Focus Scotland, lambasted the idea.

Picture: James Kirby

She said: “It’s less than a week since UK chief medical officers issued new drinking guidelines highlighting the health risks linked to alcohol consumption.

“The guidance also specifically mentioned situations where it was advisable to avoid alcohol completely, including before, during and directly after exercise.

“That’s simply common sense.

“This event is clearly a gimmick, however three people dying every day due to alcohol in Scotland is no joke.”

Picture: James Kirby