legs running marathon

What insurance does a running race require?

If you are organising a running race then you will need insurance. Whether you are organising a one mile fun run or a multi-stage adventure race, a big city marathon or a fell race, the basics remain the same, it is just a difference in scale.

You can insure one race at a time but if you organise multiple events, we normally find it far more cost effective to purchase an annual policy that covers all of your races.

For most event organisers we would suggest you consider the following:

  • Public Liability – this is to cover claims against you if you someone is injured or their property is damaged. Having this insurance is not only common sense but may also be a compulsory requirement of the landowner, local authority or license provider. You need to check the quality of the cover: we have seen many policies that do not cover injury to participants and even one that excluded injury to spectators if they have a family member participating in the race! Public liability can often be extended to include Products Liability insurance, which you will need if you sell or supply products, even drinks.
  • Employer’s Liability – is compulsory if you employ anyone but you should also obtain this cover if you have part-time employees and/or unpaid marshals. One of the largest claims we have seen in a race involved an injury to a marshal
  • Kit & Equipment – your kit may need covering against things like theft, fire, flood, storm etc. This can also include hired plant, such as generators, barriers and portaloos. You may also need to cover your race merchandise and other sale stock. If your race involves building significant obstacles, you may also need to cover those with contract works insurance.
  • Cancellation & disruption – this insurance is designed to cover your costs or lost revenue if your event is disrupted or cancelled for reasons beyond your control, such as extreme weather or road closure.
  • Entry refund cover – adding this to the price of an entry, available to participants at point of purchase will mean they will be reimbursed if they are unable to attend your race, with no admin burden for you.
  • Cyber insurance – becoming increasingly popular now race organisers collect entries and payment online and process their results electronically – making them vulnerable to cyber crime and GDPR breaches. A cyber policy will provide technical and legal support in the event of a data incident or hack and can cover your costs and losses.
  • Tour operator’s liability – a legal requirement if you provide a package lasting 24hours or more. This is particularly important if you are organising foreign events. You may also need to consider financial failure insurance and / or bonds in order to comply with regulations.

Duncan Sutcliffe, director, Mann Broadbent, commented: “We have been specialists in sports and leisure insurance for over 50 years insuring events across the world of all shapes and sizes, so we are very well placed to help you too.”

If you would like help with your insurance from brokers who really understand running races, then give our team a call on 01905 612336 or contact us

Duncan Sutcliffe
Director, Mann Broadbent - Sports, Dance, Leisure Insurance