Press Releases

The Impact of #TOM2020 Cancellation – Your Questions Answered
The Impact of #TOM2020 Cancellation – Your Questions Answered

19 March 2020

Following the unprecedented decision by the TOM NPC to cancel the 2020 Two Oceans Marathon we wish to address the most pressing concerns of the running community who have been impacted by the cancellation.

Why decide on cancellation and not a postponement?

We do not yet know the full effect the COVID-19 pandemic will have on South Africa and for how long restrictions will be enforced. Internationally, the consensus among public health experts is that the COVID-19 threat will remain a reality for months to come, and that a second wave of the illness due to seasonal changes cannot be ruled out.

Our biggest priority remains the well-being of our runners; protection of all staff, suppliers and their staff, and the broader community.

Given the number of events on the calendar in the latter half of the year, we simply cannot guarantee the availability of our various major service providers, or that the venue and infrastructures will be available for the TOM 2020 Expo and the finish for a postponed event.

Amid this uncertainty, and as events were unfolding, the TOM NPC Board took the difficult decision to cancel the 51st Two Oceans Marathon scheduled for 11 April 2020.

Are runners getting refunds?

The terms and conditions relating to Two Oceans Marathon Entries and Fees confirm that no refunds will be given in the event of a cancellation. This is purely to safeguard the financial security of the event based on the potential losses which arise from a cancellation.

We are busy quantifying the financial implications of the need to cancel the Two Oceans Marathon 2020.  At the time of the decision to cancel, most major expenditure items including T-shirts, medals and goodie bags were already in the production phase. Contracts have been signed, orders have been placed, deposits have been paid and work was in progress. In addition, there are many expenses which have already been paid and cannot be recovered.

Are runners getting T-shirts?

The TOM2020 Ultra Marathon, Half Marathon and Trail Run T-shirts and the TOM 2020 Commemorative Buffs are already in production and we are proud to have supported local business in this venture.

The TOM NPC can therefore confirm the following:

  • ULTRA MARATHON: Runners who entered for the TOM 2020 Ultra Marathon will receive the #TOM2020 Ultra Marathon shirt which was included in the cost of their entry;
  • HALF-MARATHON: Runners who purchased the TOM 2020 Half Marathon shirt will receive the #TOM2020 Half Marathon shirt;
  • TRAIL RUNS: Runners who entered the TOM 2020 Trail events will receive the TOM 2020 Trail shirt which was included in the cost of their entry;
  • In addition ALL entrants in the ULTRA, HALF MARATHON and TRAIL RUNS will receive a free commemorative Two Oceans Marathon 2020 buff.
  • All purchases of the Two Oceans Marathon 50th Anniversary book will be honoured.

The Two Oceans Marathon office is currently working on the logistics of how the T-shirts and books purchased, as well as complimentary buffs, will be handed to runners. This will be confirmed at a later date.

What about parking and medal engraving?

All payments for medal engraving and parking for TOM2020 will be reimbursed.

What about goodie bags and medals?

Runners will not be receiving goodie bags and medals. These items will be used for 2021 and this will help offset some of the financial loss which we are facing due to the cancellation of the event.

Will the 2020 entries be deferred to 2021?

Due to the fact that our route and numbers for each event are dependent on various factors we are considering, but cannot at this time guarantee, that 2020 entrants will be assured of an entry in 2021.

Regrettably, entry fees cannot be deferred to 2021.

In conclusion

We understand the unhappiness of many runners with regards to the decision to cancel the race and the potential financial losses they face, including travel and accommodation. We also sympathise with the many businesses and charities who will not be able to benefit from the significant contribution which the Two Oceans Marathon brings to the City of Cape Town and the Western Cape each year.

We will continue to update the runners with ongoing communication on the impact of the cancellation of the event.

Debra Barnes

Two Oceans Marathon Race Director


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