Yes, that's right - this is a pre-game...as in a trial run (literally).
The official inaugural Fukui Sakura Marathon will take place on March 31, 2024 but before that, the race organizers are hosting a 14.5km "one-third marathon" on Sunday, March 26, 2023.
The Fukui Sakura Trial Run 2023 is open to the first 2,000 registrants - there's also a 5k and a 1k fun run. It's worth noting this is an A to B race - you will NOT finish where you started. The race starts nearby Fukui train station and ends nearby Maruoka Castle.
Rest assured, there will be a free shuttle bus taking finishers from the finish area back to the start at Fukui station. However, the limited shuttle bus service taking runners (who need a ride to the start line, but want to return home directly after finishing) from the finish area to the start is already full. Runners are not required to take either shuttle bus, which takes about 30 minutes.
If you're interested in the Fukui Sakura Trial Run 2023, you'll want to sign up sooner than later!
Fukui Sakura Trial Run 2023 (Fukui)
Mar 26 | Registration Oct 14 - Jan 15 (FCFS)
14.5km, 5km, 1km