Marlborough’s Saint Clair Vineyard Half Marathon is over for another year. Not only did the renowned race reach highest entries to date it also raised a record of $60,500 for Bowel Cancer New Zealand to educate, support people and promote the annual Bowel Cancer Awareness nationwide campaign running throughout June.
New Zealand has one of the highest rates of bowel cancer deaths in the world, but if diagnosed and treated early, 75% of cases can be cured. Bowel cancer is one of the most treatable types of cancer if detected in time.
“One of our key goals with Bowel Cancer Awareness Month is to get it openly talked about. We are grateful to everyone involved with the Saint Clair Vineyard Half Marathon who have and continue to support us,” says Rebekah Heal, Executive Officer of Bowel Cancer New Zealand. “Talking about it saves lives, the bigger our voice becomes the more people we can reach.”
Included in the entrants who participated in the race especially for Bowel Cancer was the charity’s ambassador Kevin Biggar. The adventurer and well-known TV host ran through the 22 vineyards in good time dressed in a dinosaur outfit.
“The Saint Clair Vineyard Half Marathon is a spectacular event with a fantastic atmosphere, it is great to have so much support for Bowel Cancer there,” says Biggar who lost his mother to Bowel Cancer and strongly believes an earlier diagnosis may have made a difference.
Biggar is an advocate for nationwide free screening programmes. Next month a free National Bowel Screening Programme will progressively begin its rollout throughout the country.
Established in 2005 the Saint Clair Vineyard Half Marathon is cemented as NZ’s favourite vineyard half marathon showcasing everything special about Marlborough attracting thousands of visitors to the region. Event owners Chris Shaw and Anna Polson launched Feast Marlborough this year as a companion to their race weekend providing visitors and locals with a 3-day food, fun and wine extravaganza.
“We are thrilled with the success of this year’s vineyard race and the new Feast Marlborough,” says Chris Shaw. “It is rewarding to give people a unique experience that captures what Marlborough is all about. Together with the amazing people involved in our events and being able to help Bowel Cancer New Zealand – it doesn’t get much better than that.”