RUN THE HAVANA MARATHON, HALF MARATHON, or 10K
It seems the only way for Americans to participate in the 30th Marabana Havana Marathon on November 20, 2016 is to register with a tour that legally allows US citizens the opportunity to take part. The race’s official website (it’s the only one that seems official) advertises Pack Express, Pack Standard, and Pack Plus tour offers. Jenny Hadfield offers a tour on her website, as does InsightCuba, and Marathon Tours.
InsightCuba posted a schedule of the 2015 marathon on Runner’s World’s Race Finder with an accompanying explanation of how momentous an event that race promised to be, and how they could help with arrangements. The following is part of that post, explaining the history of US citizens' difficulties competing there. “The first Marabana Havana Marathon was held in 1987. Due to 50 years of travel restrictions caused by the U.S. embargo against Cuba, few Americans have ever legally participated in the race. Until now”. The piece was posted in 2015. “Last year, insightCuba sent the first organized group of half and full marathon runners to Cuba in the race’s history. As the foremost provider of legal people-to-people travel to Cuba since 2000 and under a general license from the U.S. Department of the Treasury, we are again offering Americans the rare opportunity to participate in the Marabana Havana Half & Full Marathon. “
Brian Metzler wrote a piece in 2014 for Competitor.com and updated it this April 2016, “How Americans Can Run the Havana Marathon”. He starts by saying, “four and a half years ago I had the chance to run a half marathon in Havana”, and goes on to describe the experience as well as provide information on tours. He ran his race in 2011 and his message is clear: it’s the chance of a lifetime!
Many who proclaim the urgency to visit sooner rather than later say that Cuba will be transformed and updated as visitor numbers grow and outside companies begin to do business there. They predict that the vintage OLD HAVANA scenes will disappear, especially those featuring brightly colored late-model autos from the 1950’s on city streets. The time to run there is now, they say.
It appears to be a wonderful experience, but somewhat expensive. I would love to go.
*He adds One World Running (featured in an EarnedRuns WEBSITE WEDNESDAY BLOG post about running shoe donation) and Velo Echappe to the list. I could not find information about a marathon tour to Cuba on oneworldrunning.com.
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EARNED RUNS is edited and authored by me, runner and founder. I began participating in road races before 5Ks were common. I've been a dietitian, practiced and taught clinical pathology, and been involved with research that utilized pathology. I am fascinated with understanding the origins of disease as well as health.
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