Half-marathon runners will be bowled over by the kind of unrivalled support that roared England onto World Cup-clinching runs at Edgbaston Stadium when they pass the iconic cricketing venue on Sunday October 13.
With the Barmy Army in full song, the ‘fortress’ staged pivotal victories over India and Australia as Eoin Morgan’s men went onto secure the nation’s first-ever ICC World Cup success at Lord’s in July.
And to celebrate an unforgettable summer of cricket, a Barmy Army-inspired ‘Brummie Army’ will gather near Edgbaston’s main entrance to cheer on Simplyhealth Great Birmingham Run entrants as they look to complete their own 13.1-mile ‘run chases’.
Members of Birmingham City University’s student cricket team will be donning their whites, waving flags and holding up cut-outs of England’s World Cup heroes along a 50-metre long ‘cricket zone’.
To really help raise the roof for the thousands of runners, joggers and walkers of all abilities either raising money for worthwhile causes, aiming for personal bests or to complete a fitness challenge, the Brummie Army will be ‘spinning’ a cricket-themed playlist.
Entrants can expect their tiring limbs to be serenaded by such classics as BBC Test Match Special’s theme, 10cc’s Dreadlock Holiday [I don’t like cricket, oh no, I love it], Bon Jovi’s Livin’ on a Prayer – and many more.
The Barmy Army embrace the lyrics of the latter when England are ‘halfway there’ to chasing down a total but runners will be relieved to hear that, in fact, they’ll be somewhat closer to the finish line when they pass the Brummie Army!
The home of Warwickshire County Cricket Club and Birmingham Bears features heavily on the Midlands’ No.1 half-marathon route. Entrants will witness the near-25,000-seat venue just after the mile-two mark on the Pershore Road and at approximately the 8.5-mile mark on the approach to Canon Hill Park. They will also pass the ten-mile mark as they complete a lap of the stadium perimeter.
David Hart, Partnerships Director for the Great Run Company, said: “With world-famous Edgbaston Stadium such an iconic feature of the route, we’re introducing this new on-course experience to celebrate an unforgettable summer of cricket and the role the venue played in England’s World Cup success.
“As a huge cricket fan, I’ve joined the Barmy Army ranks on many occasions and have no doubts the Brummie Army will give our participants the same kind of raucous support. I would encourage other cricket enthusiasts to don their whites and join the Birmingham City University cricketers in cheering on the participants from the cricket zone. The more the merrier!”
Starting on iconic New Street, the new-look Great Birmingham Run route also takes in popular Brum landmarks and suburbs like the Rotunda, Selfridges, Bournville and Digbeth before finishing on Jennens Road, with Aston University campus hosting post-run refreshments.
Many worthwhile causes will benefit from the hundreds of thousands of pounds that will be raised by Great Birmingham Run entrants.
The half marathon also features the ENGIE Business Challenge, which pits work teams against each other for fastest-time trophies and bragging rights in the corporate world.
To enter the Simplyhealth Great Birmingham Run click here
Anyone who took part in the Simplyhealth Great Birmingham 10k in May will automatically receive a £10 discount off their entry to the half marathon when using the same log in details.