World News – GB – Elite runners at London Marathon 2020 will use social distancing devices to stay safe


Elite athletes competing in this year’s London Marathon will be fitted with social distancing devices in the hours leading up to the event to preserve the « secure bio-bubble » they run inside

The top 200 elite runners participating in the men’s, women’s, para and wheelchair races will wear the Bump devices all the way to the start line, either around their necks or clipped to their clothes

This year’s London Marathon is limited to elite competitors only in a secure biosphere environment in St James’s Park on Sunday October 4 due to the coronavirus outbreak

The event, the 40th annual capital city marathon, was originally scheduled to be held on April 26 It attracted a record 457,861 applications from around the world, including 373,736 UK based

Bump devices, created by UK robotics company Tharsus, monitor the time athletes spend at a preset distance from each other

If they get too close to each other, the devices make sounds and emit blue light to indicate two meters and red for 12 meters

If a runner tests positive for Covid-19 in the two weeks before the event, race organizers can determine which carriers are at risk of infection

« This weekend’s event is the culmination of several months of planning to host a socially remote and safe 2020 Virgin Money London Marathon for all participants and stakeholders, » said Hugh Brasher event director of the marathon

“Tharsus Bump technology played an important role, giving our athletes and internal teams extra confidence to safely engage in the event »

Bump devices were originally developed to strengthen social distancing guidelines in offices, warehouses, and other workplaces, by storing information from each time a user enters the ‘zone of shock ”from another

Although the system does not track user movements, circular devices use radio frequency technology to create a personal movement system to determine proximity to users

About 500 staff on site to keep the marathon running smoothly must also wear them to protect the bio-secure racing bubble

Eliud Kipchoge, who broke the world record for the fastest marathon in 2018 with a time of 2:01:39, was among the elite athletes who traveled to London on Monday to set up camp in a bio-secure hotel

Brigid Kosgei, who won the women’s race at the 2018 and 2019 Chicago Marathons and the 2019 London Marathon, also competes alongside 2019 world marathon champion Ruth Chepngetich

They will carry the devices in their hotel and around the bubble but will remove them during the race itself

Brian Palmer, CEO of the Tharsus Group, said sports events taking place behind doors will not only provide vital support to clubs and organizations suffering financially from the pandemic, but can also provide a « huge boost. to national morale « 

London Marathon 2020: As London prepares for its first ‘virtual’ race, not everyone benefits from the lockdown running boom

“The Virgin Money London Marathon is a perfect example; it is an extremely symbolic sporting event and we are delighted to play a role in facilitating its delivery in such difficult circumstances ”, he added.

London Marathon, Marathon, Eliud Kipchoge

World News – GB – Elite runners at London Marathon 2020 will use social distancing devices to stay safe



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