No joke: boozy fun run slammed by campaigners

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10k "Wineathlon" branded irresponsible and danger to health  

13th January 2016 by Robert Armour 0 Comments

A 10k “fun run” where competitors drink wine every two miles has been slammed as “no joke” by a leading charity.   

Organisers behind the so-called Wineathlon, taking place in Glasgow in September, say they will “put the fun back into run" and that energy drinks on the day will come in "red white and rose."

But Alcohol Focus Scotland, which campaigns for responsible drinking, said the event was at best ill-thought out and at worst placed people’s health at risk.

Instead of water at the rest stops, runners will be offered wine from different regions around the world.

Hundreds of people have already entered the 24 September race, ahead of the route being finalised.

Alison Douglas, chief executive, Alcohol Focus Scotland, said: “It is less than a week since UK chief medical officers issued new drinking guidelines highlighting the health risks linked to alcohol consumption.  

Three people dying every day due to alcohol in Scotland is no joke - Alison Douglas

"The guidance also specifically mentioned situations where it was advisable to avoid alcohol completely, including before, during and directly after exercise. 

“That’s simply common sense. This event is clearly a gimmick, however, three people dying every day due to alcohol in Scotland is no joke. 

“Most people will see this event for what it is: at best ill-thought through and at worst placing people’s health at risk rather than helping them improve it.”

Despite Glasgow having the unenviable reputation as one of the heaviest drinking cities in the world, as well as one of the unhealthiest, competitors will be encouraged to buy the wines they taste en-route at the end of the race.

Wane Law, managing director of organiser’s TeamOA, defended the event.

He said: “We want to put the fun back into running and prove that you don't have to be an elite race snake.

"We've run previous events and the people who are doing the races are not diehard runners, it's people bringing picnic blankets and making a day of it.

"We are capping entries at 600 this year to ensure we can run a safe event and it means people will be desperate to take part next year."

A local charity will be chosen to benefit for the event and runners are being encouraged to raise as much as possible.

Previous races have been held south of the border in Yorkshire and Huddersfield where 3,000 runners took part.

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