YOUNG athletes took tips from an Olympic track hopeful at the launch of this year’s Great North 10k.
Fresh from London Marathon success, Freya Murray launched the run, which will take place in Gateshead days before the start on the Olympics.
Freya, of Chester-le-Street, was the second British female to finish the London Marathon and is currently training to win a place on Team GB.
The launch saw budding athletes from Gateshead College Academy for Sport get the chance to question 2012 hopeful Freya on her training routine.
David Hart, communications director at run organisers Nova International, said: “We are delighted to be hosting the biggest 10k in the region ... the Bupa Great North 10k Gateshead.
“It’s fitting that the home of athletics in the North East should be staging the event just days before London 2012. It’s a great event for people to be part of, whether they’re beginners or in training for the Bupa Great North Run two months later.”
The race, on Sunday, July 22, will start and finish at Gateshead International Stadium.
It takes runners past the Baltic, the Sage, the Millennium Bridge and the Tyne Bridge.
Participants will cross the finish line inside the stadium, giving family and friends the chance to cheer them on from the stands.
The 10k, now in its fourth year, moved to Gateshead from Sunderland last summer.
Gateshead Council cabinet member for culture, Coun Linda Green, said: “Gateshead has such a fantastic sporting history and for this event to come back for the second year is fantastic.
“It’s a great setting, from the stadium to the Quayside and past iconic buildings and bridges. You couldn’t get a better backdrop for a run.”
The event will be one of the last mass participation sporting events before London 2012.
Organisers are expecting 5,000 runners to take part.
Last year’s race was officially started by Mike McLeod, who won the first two Great North Runs.
The race was won by Scott Overall who represented GB at the World Indoor Championships, and Louise Damen, who is the 2011 English women’s cross-country champion, in just over half an hour.
Entries to the Great North 10k are on a first-come, first-served basis.
Registration is now open. See the website at www.greatrun.org/north10k