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OKC Memorial Marathon postpones 2021 race due to ongoing COVID-19 concerns

Next year's Oklahoma City Memorial Marathon has been postponed.

While the original date is still more than five months away, race officials announced Tuesday they were pushing the event back to Oct. 2 and 3. Their decision was made in hopes that a delay will reduce the impact of the coronavirus pandemic and increase the likelihood of having the event in person.

The 2020 Memorial Marathon was postponed, then moved to a virtual race due to COVID-19.

"While the virtual Memorial Marathon exceeded our expectations this year, we realize how meaningful it is to all be together in person for the Run to Remember," race director Kari Watkins said in a statement. "This is not just another marathon; this is one of Oklahoma City's signature events that brings our whole community together.

"If a few more months allows people to run together, it's worth the delay."

Race officials also announced a change to the format. Instead of one day for all distances, the races will be spread across two days to better distance runners at the start and finish lines.

On Saturday, Oct. 2, the half marathon, 5K and kids marathon will be run.

On Sunday, Oct. 3, the marathon and marathon relay will be run.

Race officials said they were still discussing whether to include a bike race in the event. Two distances were added to the virtual race this year.

Oklahoma City joins a growing list of marathons around the world that have postponed races in 2021, including the Boston Marathon, which has not announced a date for its reschedule. Tokyo and London, major marathons that traditionally take place in the spring, have also delayed until the fall.

Related Photos
<strong>Runs start the Oklahoma City Memorial Marathon in Oklahoma City, Sunday, April 28, 2019. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman]</strong>

Runs start the Oklahoma City Memorial Marathon in Oklahoma City, Sunday, April 28, 2019. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman]

<figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-143ee8f6f17505951c2c779a0e403f1c.jpg" alt="Photo - Runs start the Oklahoma City Memorial Marathon in Oklahoma City, Sunday, April 28, 2019. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman] " title=" Runs start the Oklahoma City Memorial Marathon in Oklahoma City, Sunday, April 28, 2019. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman] "><figcaption> Runs start the Oklahoma City Memorial Marathon in Oklahoma City, Sunday, April 28, 2019. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman] </figcaption></figure>
Jenni Carlson

Jenni Carlson, a sports columnist at The Oklahoman since 1999, came by her love of sports honestly. She grew up in a sports-loving family in Kansas. Her dad coached baseball and did color commentary on the radio for the high school football... Read more ›

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