Santa Claus to run through Sydney in City2Surf
New year, new race… or at least that is the philosophy for many of those who are taking part in the 43rd year of City2Surf
. It's not a surfing event like its name hints, but a running race… on the beach- which sparks some Baywatch flashbacks.
In the heart of the cosmopolitan city of Sydney, the emotion is starting to build up in anticipation of City2Surf. The long-distance running event -that takes place this year on August 11th- will make contestants run, run and run for 14 kilometres from Sydney CBC to Bondi Beach.
Even though Sun-Herald City2Surf presented by Westpac falls short from being a marathon - with an official distance of 42.195 Km-, it is the largest timed running race in the world. With 85,000 registered participants in 2012, City2Surf has more competitors than the London and New York Marathons combined.
In consonance with the city's vibrant yet bohemian lifestyle, contenders mix their competitive spirit with their sense of humour. Thus, it is not rare to spot Santa Claus and Michael Jackson running around Sydney. No, Australians don't celebrate Christmas on August nor do they have a Dragon ball or a time machine; it's just that to add some fun to the event, runners wear crazy costumes and celebrity look-a-likes.
But not everything is about sports and fun in City2Surf. Actually, there is a Gold Charity entry –now available- which allows participants to choose from a list of high profile Australian charities, to run and raise funds.
Since its beginnings the event has been owned and organised by The Sun-Herald (formerly The Sun), a Fairfax Media publication. Accordingly, inspiration came through a note from Fairfax's US correspondent, who sent a newspaper clipping in 1970 about San Francisco Bay to Breakers event to the editor of The Sun newspaper, Jack Tier.
And so The Sun City2Surf was born on September 5th, 1971. Subsequently, it became acknowledged as Australia's premier road race. Since 1973, it has been celebrated on the second Sunday in August, except for the race held in 2000, when it was moved to July when the Sydney Olympics took place in August.