Coronavirus: Isle of Man Parish Walk cancelled amid outbreak

Start line
Competitors traditionally set off from the island's National Sport Centre

The Isle of Man Parish Walk scheduled to take place in June has been cancelled due to coronavirus.

The annual event has been called off because of the "extraordinary circumstances" surrounding the pandemic, race director Ray Cox said.

The endurance race sees participants given a limit of 24 hours to complete the 85-mile (137km) course, which runs through 17 island parishes.

The event attracts more than 1,000 competitors each year.

The race also sees thousands of people line the streets to cheer walkers on.

"The Parish Walk is a highlight of the year for so many of us, but the extraordinary circumstances in which we find ourselves mean that we have to ensure the safety of walkers and the hundreds of volunteers who make the event happen our first priority," Mr Cox said.

Those registered to take part this year could carry their entry over to the 2021 event or request a refund, he added.

Last year's race saw Liam Parker take his second victory in the contest, crossing the line with a time of 15 hours 44 minutes and six seconds.

The coronavirus pandemic has already led to cancellation of both the Southern 100 races and the Isle of Man TT races.