News & Releases >> March 27 2009

No More Spit! 'Goodbye' Leslie St. Spit, 'Hello' The Beach, as City of Toronto approves fabulous course improvements for Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon '09

... run Queen Street through the heart of The Beach for 20th Anniversary STWM

No More Spit - fabulous course improvements for 2009

Toronto, March 27, 2009 — The City of Toronto has approved a major course revision for STWM09 that will eliminate the controversial Leslie Street Spit, 5km section of the marathon course, and replace it with an out-and-back section on Queen Street from Woodbine to Neville Park and back.

"This is HUGE," said Race Director Alan Brookes. "Coming on the heels of our move of the Start/Finish to prestigious Nathan Phillips Square last year, and Mayor David Miller recently signing up to run the Half this September, this is further testimony of how much Toronto is embracing STWM and healthy lifestyles and role models for our neighbourhoods and families."

The Queen Street addition will take runners through the heart of The Beaches neighbourhood at a critical point in the race, between 29km and 33km, just as energies are sagging and marathoners are hitting the legendary "Wall".

"We're thrilled to be building on our partnership with the Beaches Lions and Rotary Clubs, The Beaches BIA, Councillor Sandra Bussin and neighbourhood groups," said Brookes. "The Beach is arguably Toronto's #1 running neighbourhood. This is not only going to be a super neighbourhood to run through with great crowd support and a major Lions Neighbourhood Entertainment Centre at Kew Gardens, it's going to be one of the best areas for spectators to watch Canada's #1, big-city marathon. Our shared vision is not just of a super Beaches Lions Entertainment Centre supported by the local Running Room, but of 'Marathon Brunches' at the innumerable restaurants and coffee shops all along the 2km stretch of Queen Street, that will help line the sidewalks with cheering fans. 'On September 27th, the average marathoner will run for 4 hours and 20 minutes; our brunch will last from 8am to 2pm — are you up for it?'!"

Runners, led by some of the world's and Canada's best chasing major prize monies, plus thousands running for local charities who will raise over $1.5 million for neighbourhood groups like the Beaches Lions, will pass through The Beach section on Queen Street between 9am and 1:30pm.

NEW, detailed course Map coming soon.