Perth Stadium at centre of proposed marathon

Athletics Western Australia (WA), the governing body for the sport in the region, has proposed a new marathon that will start and end at the new Perth Stadium.

The 42-kilometre flat-fast course is a push by Athletics WA to boost tourism numbers in Perth. It will also involve a series of festival events in the week leading up for primary school children.

The event, which is expected to take place in June 2019, will fit around other major marathons in Australia.

Athletics WA chief executive, Wayne Loxley said that the body has been collaborating with Tourism WA for the last two and a half years about the marathon.

“They’ve (the government) given it the tick of approval,” he said, according to the Brisbane Times newspaper. “We just need to find a bit of financial support with a sponsor to come on board and we’re ready to go 2019.

“It’s going to be the first community event that the stadium will have and of course that’s also attractive to the government to bring people into the state.”

British distance runner Mo Farah’s management has said that the athlete is keen to be involved.

“Having these athletes involved brings every bit of attraction to the event,” Loxley said. “Here in Perth, we’re isolated – we need a world class event like this which brings people from all over the world to Perth and see how beautiful a place we live in.

“We’ve already had conversations with a major international TV company that would look at televising it for us and we think there’s great interest in carrying the event for us. We’d like to think we can get 5000 in the first year and I’m very confident it will grow from there.”

The news comes after a deal was reached for AFL Aussie rules football teams the West Coast Eagles and Fremantle Dockers to play at the soon-to-be-opened Perth Stadium from next year.

Following a lengthy period of negotiation, the West Australian government has reached a compromise with the AFL and the Western Australian Football Commission for the two teams to begin playing at the 60,000-capacity venue in 2018. The stadium will open in January.