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Great Barrier Reef Marathon Festival


Historical Story from 2011


Great Barrier Reef Marathon Festival comes to Port Douglas

The first ever Marathon Festival is being hosted in Port Douglas on 12 November 2011.  

Aptly named after the regions most famous icon, the Great Barrier Reef Marathon Festival will feature 4 individual running events.

-    74 km Ultra Marathon
-    Half Marathon
-    10 km
-    Fundy 5000 

The Ultra and Half Marathon courses will include the historic ‘Bump Track, travel through cane fields, creeks, rainforest and on Four Mile Beach and end in Port Douglas’ iconic Sunset spot, Rex Park. The course is a specially designed adventure course for runners who enjoy the mixing endurance with spectacular natural surroundings.

The multi event Marathon Festival also includes two spectacular events. The Pasta Power-up Party will be on the boardwalk of the Meridien Marina the night before and the Ultra Celebration Dinner will end the festival outdoors in Rex Park overlooking the Coral Sea.

Marathon legend Steve Moneghetti is the race ambassador and will also be running in the race.  He is eager to help consolidate the Marathon Festival as an annual event on the worldwide running circuit and is looking forward to welcoming around 400 runners to the inaugural race.  

A feature of this unique running festival will be the inclusion of local, national and international runners all travelling to the area as part of a series of fully hosted tour and accommodation packages.

Port Douglas is no stranger to a marathon with an original marathon being run 3 times around a 14km looped track on the peninsula. The original organiser of the event, back in the early 90s, we are told is now a retired Mossman teacher.  

The 2011 event is being organised by locally owned Port Douglas Event Management, who are also destination managers for the much anticipated Solar Eclipse Marathon being organised in association with event owners Travelling Fit, NSW and Albatros Travel from Denmark for the following year. 

The first Marathon event will be the Solar Eclipse Marathon and will welcome a total of 3,000 runners and their families from around the world in November 2012.

The 2011 Marathon Festival this year offers both a 74km Ultra Marathon and the main event the Steve Moneghetti Invitational Half Marathon but not a 42 km marathon itself. This is to ensure the Marathon event and course next year is as unique to the region as the Solar Eclipse itself.

The 2011 Great Barrier Reef Marathon Festival will be a taster of what is to come for the following year during the Total Solar Eclipse spectacular and from 2013 on the Great Barrier Reef Marathon Festival will include the Marathon event each year.

Bruno Bennett, the business development manager Port Douglas Event Management, said “The 2011 Great Barrier Reef event can provide Australian and International runners with a once-in-a-lifetime experience and will have a significant long term impact on the tourism industry in Port Douglas and the wider community.

He adds, having the support of the local council, local tourism and business communities will ensure that this inaugural running festival is a massive success.
The Great Barrier Reef Marathon Festival will cater for participants of all levels of ability and will have accommodation levels to suit every budget and requirement, from single runners to large families looking for an extended holiday.

In line with Port Douglas unique character, the running festival will boast the inaugural Fundy 5000 which will be an event spectacular in its own right. Entrants will be competing not only for first place but best dressed or undressed as the case may be. Proceeds from this event will be donated to the Royal Children's Hospital.

For entry information for the Great Barrier Reef Marathon Festival visit website

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