Sunderland half marathon and 10k set to return in 2014

Due to overwhelming public response, the Sunderland City Half Marathon and the Sunderland City 10k are set for a comeback next year

Emily Barber Steve Cram at the Stadium of Light in Sunderland ahead of the Marathon of the North 2013
Steve Cram at the Stadium of Light in Sunderland ahead of the Marathon of the North 2013

A roster of running events have been confirmed to return to Sunderland in 2014.

The Sunderland City Half Marathon and the Sunderland City 10k are set for a comeback next year due to public response.

These two events will form part of the 2014 Run Sunderland Festival which will take place on Sunday, May 4.

The events started in 2011 and have since been added to due to positive feedback in the North-East.

Event founder and former athlete Steve Cram said: “We are really excited about the potential for the 2014 Sunderland City Half Marathon and Sunderland City 10k.

“Since launching the first of these events in 2011, they have grown year on year and it was great to see almost 5,000 people running through the city centre last May.”

The half marathon will start and end and Sunderland’s iconic Stadium of Light, and use much of same roads as the 10k.

In addition to the two main races, the Sunderland City Club Challenge will offer running and athletic clubs the chance to win cash prizes.

In the challange, clubs will enter small teams of runners, who will battle it out with others to win a top prize of £500.

The entry cost for the 2014 half marathon is £32 and the cost to enter the 10k is £23.

Club runners can enter at the reduced prices of £30 and £21 respectively.

Leader of Sunderland City Council, Coun Paul Watson, adds: “The half marathon and the Sunderland City 10k have become firmly established in the city’s calendar, alongside major events like the Stadium of Light concerts and Sunderland International Airshow.

“They continue to attract more people every year.”

Organisers are planning to remove twists and turns to encourage people to come along and show their support to runners, and give the more competitive among them the chance to chase optimum times.

The event met a minor disaster earlier this year when both races were reduced by 264 metres due to incorrect placement of marshalls. The organisers took responsibility for the folly and have offered a 25% reduction to runners involved in next year’s festival.

Steve Cram, from Jarrow, South Tyneside, sees the event as yet another boost for running in the UK, which is now getting more popular by the day.

He said: “Running participation at most levels in the UK is continuing to increase strongly and we aim to provide another great opportunity for people to test themselves against the classic 10k and half marathon distances, cheered on by the knowledgeable and enthusiastic North East public.”

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