Thousands take part in Wearside runs

The Northern Echo: The Sunderland City Half Marathon and 10k run have been held today The Sunderland City Half Marathon and 10k run have been held today

THOUSANDS of people have been pounding the streets of the North-East during the Sunderland City Half Marathon and 10k run.

Starting and finishing at the Stadium of Light, both races followed routes around the city centre, with thousands more spectators, cheering them on.

The dry weather conditions led to some fast times in both races, by elite runners, those representing the region's athletics clubs and many fun runners who raised thousands of pounds for charity, including official charity COCO (Comrades of Children Overseas).

Nearly 3,000 runners completed either the half marathon or the 10k.

Olympian Steve Cram, who is behind the runs, said: "It's been a great day.

"The weather behaved and gave us great conditions for running and the people of Sunderland provided enthusiastic support for all of our runners.

"There were lots of smiles on the course and at the finish.

"Congratulations to everyone who took part and thanks to Sunderland City Council, all of the sponsors and the people of Sunderland for making this into such a special event."

The Run Sunderland Festival was organised by Events of the North, who worked with Sunderland City Council and Sunderland Live.

The day started with the Sunderland City 10k, which was won by Ian Hudspith of Morpeth Harriers, who crossed the line in 31 minutes and 36 seconds.

He was followed by Ross Floyd, also of Morpeth (33:28) and Craig Isherwood of Sunderland Harriers (33:47).

First lady was Danielle Hodgkinson of Wallsend Harriers (36:19), with Joanne Brown of Ponteland Runners (41:20) in second and Yamuna Thiru of Elswick Harriers (42:01) in third.

The Sunderland City Half Marathon was won by Yared Hagos of Wallsend Harriers in 65:06, followed by Derek Hawkins of Leeds AC in 65:25 and James Bulman of New Marske Harriers in 70:53. Sunderland Stroller Aly Dixon won the women's race in 74:31, with Suzanne Thew of North Shields Polytechnic (85:43) in second and Michelle Nolan of Gateshead Harriers (89:37) in third.

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