Twin Town Challenge

  • Description: A 2021-mile, multi-activity virtual challenge linking Bolton with its twin towns of Le Mans in France and Paderborn in Germany
  • Total Distance: 2,021 miles / 3,253 kilometres
  • Activity: Running, Walking, Cycling, Swimming, and Wheelchair
  • Start Date: 1 October 2020
  • End Date: 16 May 2021
  • Open To: Solo participants and teams of 2 to 10 people
  • Entry Fee: Three options from just £35 per person

Feeling that running a marathon right now is too much? Need something to ease you back into training or are you looking for something to help keep your motivation to keep active? We’ve got the answer!

Introducing the Bolton Marathon Twin Towns Challenge…

What is the Twin Towns Challenge?

Right up until 16 May 2021, we want to offer something unique that helps to keep everyone motivated but also bring people together. Diving straight back into marathon training is hard work so we’ve devised a truly international challenge to get you started and keep you going right up until race day!

  • Aim is to run, walk, cycle, push (wheelchair users) or swim a total of 2021 miles between Bolton, Le Mans and Paderborn before returning to Bolton before the finish of the physical Bolton Marathon on Sunday 16 May 2021
  • Challenge starts 1 October 2020
  • The route is 2021 miles, a real challenge in the year 2021!
  • Along the route there are milestones to keep you constantly motivated
  • All activity is automatically tracked through Strava and the My Virtual Mission app making it very user friendly
  • Distance covered is then transferred onto the challenge route so you can see exactly how you compare to everyone else on the challenge – further increasing motivation
  • Challenge route links to Google Streetview meaning you can see exactly where you are at any point on the route allowing you to explore different places virtually
  • Take on the challenge on your own or as part of a team of up to 10 people

Entry Options

There are three different entry options. Just pick the one that suits you when registering. [Note that a £5 discount applies for existing entrants of the postponed 2020 Bolton Marathon & 10k]




  • Includes everything in Silver Entry plus a unique Twin Town Challenge finisher medal


  • Includes everything in Silver Entry plus a unique Twin Town Challenge finisher medal and a limited edition neck gaiter

Benefits to taking part:

  • Give yourself a reason to exercise – with ever changing restrictions on movement and limited events taking place in the near future many people will choose not to keep active
  • Great opportunity to start active commuting to your workplace! Leave the car at home, and run, walk or cycle to work – better still do it as a team!
  • By active commuting, you are doing your bit to actively reduce the strain on transport infrastructure and reduce your carbon emissions
  • Improve your mental and physical health with increased physical activity
  • Gives you a long-term goal which will positively impact your life

It’s unique!

We’re linking the virtual with reality. The finish date for the challenge coincides with the date of the real-life Bolton Marathon and the final 26.2 miles is the marathon course meaning you could complete the virtual Twin Towns Challenge whilst completing the actual Bolton Marathon! Or you can smash through your 2021 miles earlier as part of your winter training and simply come and enjoy the Bolton Marathon!

A little something extra…

There’s £5 off for all Bolton Marathon and 10k entrants! And if you enter the Twin Towns Challenge but haven’t yet entered the marathon or 10k, we’ll give you £5 of entry to either of these events if you choose to sign up to them! Simply enter your race confirmation number when you sign up to the Twin Towns Challenge to redeem your discount.

Share your experiences on Facebook, join our community training and support page and get involved with the Bolton Marathon Strava Club to keep you motivated! See you at the start line in May 2021!