Kipchoge first star name to sign up for the new look Bupa Great Edinburgh Cross Country

For Immediate Release Monday 29 November 2010 For Sports Desk Olympic 5000 metres silver medallist, Eliud Kipchoge, will make a fifth appearance at the Bupa Great Edinburgh Cross Country in the New Year.

Kipchoge, the first ever winner of what is acknowledged as the top meeting in the International Association of Athletics Federations’ (IAAF) calendar of permit events, will compete in a revamped competition at Holyrood Park on January 8 2011. The men's 9km international race, which Kipchoge won in 2005 and has finished third on a further two occasions, has been reduced to four km as the Bupa Great Edinburgh Cross Country adopts a new format for 2011. The Bupa Great Edinburgh Cross Country includes three cross country events; the men’s 4 km and women’s 6 km invitation-only events – which will be contested by the world’s best male and female athletes respectively – and the Men’s International Team Challenge which is 8 km. The Men’s International Team Challenge will see Great Britain and Northern Ireland Senior Men and Great Britain and Northern Ireland U23 & U20 Men take on the United States and a European Select team over 8 kilometres. Each country competing in the International Team Challenge will enter nine athletes per team and the first six athletes to complete the course will receive a score based on their position. The team with the lowest overall score wins. "The new programme is designed to host what should be a closely fought duel between the teams involved," said Andy Caine, the event project manager. Caine said the quality of overseas runners, which has seen Olympic and world champions such as Kenenisa Bekele and Tirunesh Dibaba star in previous years, will be maintained, with big signings to be announced shortly. "I think what is important about cutting the international race to 4km is that it will also allow track stars who specialise over 1500m to take part, and there has been an encouraging response to the proposal, " added Caine. "It will still suit the likes of Kipchoge and other leading 5000m runners, who although stepping down, will still be at home with the distance. Yes, it's a new concept, but I believe it will be a winning formula which has been received enthusiastically from both competitors and managers I have spoken with. We are hoping that the event will really capture the imagination of the public.” Paul Bush OBE, Chief Operating Officer for EventScotland said, “The Bupa Great Edinburgh Cross Country is a great way to kick off our 2011 calendar of events. The strength of the racing field, combined with the stunning backdrop of Arthurs Seat and Holyrood Park, sets the stage for an exciting spectacle for everyone attending or enjoying the television coverage at home.” Entry into Holyrood Park is free for spectators and organisers are encouraging the public to take advantage of the opportunity to see the world’s best athletes compete, as well as the cream of young Scottish athletes on show within the main events and the Scottish Inter District Championships. The Bupa Great Edinburgh Cross Country completes an exciting day of running in Holyrood Park, which starts as hundreds of youngsters take part in the 2.5km Bupa Junior Great Winter Run followed by thousands runners of all abilities taking on the 5km Bupa Great Winter Run. Both events are part of the Bupa Great Run series, organised by Nova International, also organisers of the Bupa Great North Run and the Bupa Great Edinburgh Run. Entries for the Bupa Great Winter Run and the Bupa Junior Great Winter Run are still open at www.greatrun.org. Ends Editors Notes Bupa Great Edinburgh Cross Country 2011- New format The Bupa Great Edinburgh Cross Country has changed its title for 2011 and was formerly known as the Bupa Great Edinburgh International Cross Country. The Bupa Great Edinburgh Cross Country has traditionally included three international elite races which consisted of a shorter 4 kilometre course for men, largely dominated by British athletes, a 6 kilometre course for the world’s best female elite athletes and a 9 kilometre course contested by the world’s best elite male athletes. The new format for the 2011 Bupa Great Edinburgh Cross will consist of a short 4 kilometre course with the best male athletes in the world competing, an unchanged format for the 6 kilometre event contested by the world’s best female athletes and The International Team Challenge which will see Great Britain and Northern Ireland Senior Men and Great Britain and Northern Ireland U23 & U20 Men take on the United States and a European Select team over 8 kilometres. Each country competing in the International Team Challenge will consist of nine athletes per team and the first six athletes to complete the course will receive a score based on their position. The team with the lowest overall score wins. Nova International The Bupa Great Edinburgh Cross Country Run and Bupa Great Winter Run is brought to you by a partnership between the City of Edinburgh Council, EventScotland and event organisers Nova International and is sponsored by Bupa. Nova International, headed by Olympic Medallist Brendan Foster is one of the UK’s leading event management and sports marketing agencies. The company’s current brand portfolio also includes some of the biggest running events in the world all based on the Bupa Great North Run, the world’s biggest half marathon with over 54,000 entries. Nova International was established in 1988 and has a strong sporting pedigree. Based in Newcastle upon Tyne, Nova has established itself as a market leader in the world of sports marketing and event management. For more information please visit www.greatrun.org. Bupa Bupa’s purpose is to help people lead longer, healthier, happier lives. A leading international healthcare provider, we offer personal and company health insurance, run care homes for older people and hospitals, and provide workplace health services, health assessments and chronic disease management services, including health coaching, and home healthcare. With no shareholders, we invest our profits to provide more and better healthcare. We are committed to making quality, patient-centred, affordable healthcare more accessible in the areas of wellness, chronic disease management and ageing. Employing over 50,000 people, Bupa has operations around the world, principally in the UK, Australia, Spain, New Zealand and the USA, as well as Hong Kong, Thailand, Saudi Arabia, India, China and across Latin America. For more information, visit www.bupa.com City of Edinburgh Council This event is part of the City of Edinburgh Council's Activcity programme, which promotes sport and physical activity events throughout the city. The Bupa Great Winter Run is a great example of an event which helps the people of Edinburgh to get active! www.eventsedinburgh.org.uk. Edinburgh's sporting calendar for 2011 is shaping up to be truly exhilarating, the Touch Rugby World Cup in June, the Nocture City Centre Cycle Race in July, and the Golden Oldies World Hockey the World Karate Championships in September just a taster of what is on offer. For more information, visit www.eventsedinburgh.org.uk. EventScotland EventScotland is the national events agency. EventScotland is working to make Scotland one of the world’s leading event destinations. By developing an exciting portfolio of sporting and cultural events EventScotland is helping to raise Scotland’s international profile and boost the economy by attracting more visitors. For further information about EventScotland, its funding programmes and latest event news visit www.EventScotland.org

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