The Malta Marathon has fallen victim to COVID-19 after organisers on Saturday announced that the 2021 edition has been cancelled due to the ongoing pandemic.
In a statement, the race organisers said that they were taking their responsibilities towards the COVID-19 pandemic very seriously and said that the decision to cancel the event is ‘understandable’ given the current circumstances in Malta.
“It is with a heavy heart that we announce the cancellation of the GiG Malta Marathon 2021,” the Malta Marathon organisers said in a statement.
“We understand that, as a proud fixture on the calendar for thousands of local and international runners, this will come as a disappointment to many.
“Both the Malta Marathon Organising Committee and GiG, as the sponsor, take our responsibilities to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic seriously and the decision to cancel the event is therefore an understandable one, given the current circumstances.”
The marathon organisers said that now their focus was to ensure that all applicants for this year’s race will be contacted directly to inform them on the decision.
“The focus of the Malta Marathon Organising Committee is to ensure that all applicants for the 2021 event are contacted directly over the next few days,” the statement continued.
“People will run again soon, we can trust in that, as we look forward to welcoming you back to challenge the GiG Malta Marathon on the 6th March 2022.”
This is the second time in the last three years that the Malta Marathon had to be cancelled.
In 2019, the organisers were forced to cancel the annual race due stormy weather which would have put the security and well-being of athletes at risk.
The decision to cancel this year’s Malta Marathon will come as a blow to the thousands of road running enthusiasts on the island who every year flock this popular race.
The Malta Marathon is the second high-profile victim of the COVID-19 pandemic in local road running as late last year Athletics Malta were forced to postpone the popular Road Running League.