20,000 people of all ages and abilities came together this weekend to take on their own personal challenge as part of the Great South Run weekend. Following a blustery day on Saturday for the Junior and Mini Great South Run and the 5K, today’s warm and calm conditions were a bonus for runners and spectators alike at the 10-mile event.
Chief Executive of the Great Run Company Paul Foster said, “It was fantastic to be back in Portsmouth today for the Great South Run.
“Well done to everyone who ran this weekend, whether you were raising money for charity, aiming to beat a PB or just out to enjoy the experience.
“The people of Portsmouth always give our runners incredible support and today was no different, the atmosphere was unbeatable.
“I’d like to thank everyone who took part – whether running, volunteering or spectating – and we hope to see you all again next year.”
Notable runners taking part included Paralympic Gold and Silver medallist and Nissan Ambassador Richard Whitehead as well as running icon Kathrine Switzer. 75-year old Kathrine became one of sport’s most inspiring role models when she took on the Boston Marathon in 1967, despite prevailing attitudes around women and long distance running at the time.
At the head of the field, GB athlete Lily Partridge took first place in a closely contested women’s elite race in a time of 54:29. Welsh athlete Natasha Cockram came second in 54:35, while Steph Twell, who competed in Tokyo at the Olympic Games last year, took third in 54:51
Partridge said, “It was a great race, the three of us were together up to about 8 miles. I hit the front at about 6 miles.
“It wasn’t really planned, so I thought I’d just try and make it a hard run race. It was a good opportunity for me to put myself under pressure and gain some confidence and it really paid off.”
In the men’s race, another 2021 Olympian, Ben Connor, took the men’s title in 47:19, Ellis Cross, the Aldershot, Farnham & District runner who beat Sir Mo Farah at the London Vitality 10,000 earlier this year, came in second in 47:32, while Birchfield Harrier’s Omar Ahmed took third in 47:49.
Connor said. “It was a fantastic event; we don’t get the chance to run many ten milers and this is the biggest one there is.
“This is my third time running the Great South Run, I’ve come third, second and now first so I’m really pleased. It’s my thirtieth birthday tomorrow, so I’m off to Barcelona tonight and will be celebrating the win.”
The first wheelchair athlete over the line was Claudia Burrough in 50:42, with Ella Bouvard just behind in 50:43. Dale Muffett was the first male wheelchair over the line in 59:12 followed by Mal Rose in 01:00:48.
The Great South Run 2023 will take place on the 14 & 15 October 2023. Entries are now open at a discounted early bird rate for the first 1000 entries.