Expect a new and improved race with plenty of Christmas cheer at this year's Standard Chartered Marathon Singapore (SCMS).
For the first time, this year's "Merry Marathon" race on 2 December will feature festive themed performances, competitions and supporters to cheer the runners on at designated points.
CEO of the Singapore Sports Council and race chairman Lim Teck Yin said in a bid to reposition the annual Singapore race, it was important to build on a "unique identity" to distinguish itself from other major marathons around the world.
For example, he said London was known for its wacky fancy dress participants and charity element, New York for its "electrifying" music band experience and Berlin for its unique international flavour of participants from over 100 countries.
"For Singapore, we decided that extending the festive cheer into our event is a way to distinguish ourselves internationally. We have close to 4,500 overseas runners this year, which we believe is an indicator of the name our marathon is making for itself around the world. With the festive theme, we hope the international stature of our marathon will grow even further," he said.
In order to improve the race experience, organisers also crunched down on congestion spots during last year's race by tweaking certain routes.
The full marathon, half-marathon and 10km races will still start from three different starting points - Orchard Road, Sentosa and Esplanade Drive respectively.
The full marathon route will include turning earlier on Upper Pickering Street in order to accomodate more runners. It will also include a scenic swing by Gardens by the Bay.
The half marathon route will include a small tweak to avoid the Tanjong Beach roundabout at Sentosa, which caused a bottleneck last year.
The 10km route remains unchanged, with all runners crossing the finishing line at the Padang.
Runners can also look forward to an improved baggage deposit service when collecting their race packs at the end of next month, helping to reduce waiting times at the deposit counters on the morning of the race.
Close to 65,000 runners took part in last year's race.
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