THE wife of the disgraced marathon runner said to have cheated his way to the finish line by catching a bus has said her husband has been “set up”.

Rob Sloan, 31, told the chairman of his running club he became tired at the 20-mile mark of Sunday’s Kielder Marathon, in Northumberland and hopped on a free specatators’ bus.

But instead of telling marshals what he had done, Mr Sloan left the bus near the end and emerged from a wood to rejoin the course to accept the accolades of spectators.

His wife, Sharon, said: “What I will say is he has been set up.

“He never cheated.

“Rob ran the race and he just can’t believe what has happened.

“People in the country think of him as a cheat. That’s what he is known as now.

“But he never did it. I can’t believe what’s happened.”

Mr Sloan said in a statement on Monday that he “ran the whole race”.

However, race organiser Steve Cram later confirmed that Mr Sloan had admitted he never completed the course.