Elite Athletes join NHS Starters and amateur runners on the city’s streets
The Great South Run – presented by ExpressTest by Cignpost, returned to the city this weekend for the first time since 2019. The sold-out event, which was cancelled in 2020 due to the pandemic, saw thousands of runners of all ages and abilities taking part.
Paul Foster, Chief Executive of the Great Run Company said, “After such an incredibly testing time for the whole country, it was so important for us to be able to celebrate being back together on the start line in Portsmouth today.
“It was great to see so many people taking on their individual challenges across the weekend – with a huge number of them raising much needed funds for charities – in the 5K, Junior and Mini and 10-mile events.
“Whether you were running, volunteering or spectating, thank you for making the event such a fantastic representation of everything that’s great about Portsmouth.”
Four members of NHS staff were invited to perform official starters duties, to pay tribute to the work of all health and care staff during the pandemic. Emergency Department Matrons Bethan Hutton and Emma Tomkinson, Bereavement Services Manager Karen Roberts, and Physiotherapist Lewis Hope, who work at Portsmouth Hospitals University NHS Trust, represented the heroic efforts of the NHS in their fight against Covid-19 during the pandemic.
Aldershot, Farnham & District AC’s Jack Rowe took first place in the men’s elite race – his first over 10 miles – in 47:20, Emile Cairess of Leeds City took second in 47:38 while Bedford and County’s Daniel Jarvis was third in 48:48.
In the women’s field, Team GB Olympic finalist Eilish McColgan took her third Great South Run title and set a new course record in 50:43, Jess Piasecki who represented Team GB in the marathon at Tokyo came in second in 51:50 with 2021 European Indoor bronze medallist over 3000m Verity Ockenden third in 54:07.
Runners coming down the finish straight at this year’s event were surrounded by billboards paying tribute to the local heroes of the pandemic, as part of the event’s Great South Thank You Campaign, in partnership with HSBC UK. An opportunity for runners to thank those who went above and beyond to support the community during the pandemic.
Entries for next year’s Great South Run on Saturday 15 & Sunday 16 October 2022 are now open. Enter now to take advantage of an Earlybird offer saving of up to £9 on your entry, but hurry, the offer is only valid for a limited number of places. On your marks, get set, go. Enter here.