Running and romance will take centre stage in Barcelona on Valentine’s Day next year as the city prepares to host its annual half marathon. More than 12,000 participants are expected to compete – making it the second largest running event in Barcelona after the marathon – and with a number of world records being set at the race previously, expectations remain high for some fine performances at the top end of the field.
The course takes runners from the Arc de Triomf, by the old town to the Plaça Catalunya. From there it goes down the famous Ramblas and along Avenida del Parallel. After this, the route continues along the Diagonal, towards the Fòrum and along the beach again at the Parc de la Ciutadella and a return to Arc de Triomf and the finishing line.
Florence Kiplagat has enjoyed considerable success at the event; the Kenyan lowered her own world half marathon record to 1:05:09 in 2015,improving upon her previous record (also set in Barcelona) by three seconds. Switzerland's Tadesse Abraham was a surprising winner in the men’s field in a time of 1:00:42, setting a national record in the process.
With a number of airlines operating reduced price flights to Barcelona, it is an accessible event for UK runners. Registration remains open until Monday 8 February. More information is available at the event website..