LONDON MARATHON runners have been told to take public transport this weekend due to the nationwide petrol crisis.
On Sunday more than 40,000 people will take part in the first full marathon held since the start of the Covid pandemic.
Athletics chiefs are confident the 41st staging of the event – which takes place over 26.2 miles between Greenwich and Westminster – will not be impacted by millions of panic-stricken drivers heading to the fuel pumps to fill up their cars.
Dozens of vehicles are used during the day of the London Marathon, including transporting elite runners to the start line and cameraman-carrying motorbikes that film the race for BBC TV.
Yet while most people usually use trains on the day, race director Hugh Brasher has urged everyone involved to leave their cars at home.
Brasher said: “So we believe that the vast majority of people get to our event using the train system. We do not have concerns at the moment.
“We encourage and always have done for runners to be sustainable in how they travel.
“People do have time at the moment to plan this and that people will be getting to the start on the trains.
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“We’ve been working with Southeastern trains and the DLR to increase numbers of trains to get people to the ExCeL beforehand.
“We actively encourage people to use the transport system to get to the start.
“The three stations are Greenwich, Maze Hill and Blackheath, and also the DLR.
“Those services have been the best way for people to get to the event in its history and will remain that way.
“[The fuel crisis] was one of the things we discussed this morning in our calls but we believe we’re in a good place.”
More than 40,000 runners will take to the streets of London and about 40,000 will cover 26.2 miles remotely on their own course, making it the biggest marathon race in history.
Everyone will be expected to provide a lateral flow test before competing and London Marathon bosses reckon “about 96.5 per cent of them have been double vaccinated”.
Though the 2022 race has been moved to October, it is set to return to its original slot of April in 2023.
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