With an entry field currently standing at over 1,000, organisers are busy readying final preparations for next Sunday's O'Neill's Walled City Marathon, the seventh edition of the local 26.2 mile classic.
Clear favourite to lead the field home into Guildhall Square, Derry on June 2nd will be the Project Africa Kenyan, Eric Keoch, a veteran of the 2016 and 2018 races. Eric won in 2016 with a 2h 23m 47s clocking and then posted 2h 25m 29s behind compatriot, Dan Tunai, last year with Dan breaking 2h 20m to set a new course record.
The Kenyan is likely to be alone upfront so perhaps only the lure of a new record bonus will be the incentive come Sunday. A big ask but hopefully he will be up for the task.
The battle for the other male podium places will be interesting with locals Chris McGuinness and Mark Mullan likely to be among the key contenders.
Local Denise Ward looks good to contest the race for top female finisher. She is gunning for a sub three hour clocking as indeed will Natalie Hall of Armagh AC who has similar ambitions. Denise has a 3h 02 m to her name and on a good day and with crowd support she could well lead all the woman home.
In the Wheelchair section locals Karol Doherty and James Divin are all set to renew their intense rivalry , exhibited as recently as last Wednesday night at the Buncrana 5K.
Very late entries are still being accepted. Check out on the marathon facebook or contact firstname.lastname@example.org