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Story added: 8th August 2016
The Norwich City Community Sports Foundation’s (CSF) ‘Run Norwich’ event made a triumphant return to Norwich on Sunday, with thousands of runners taking to the city centre streets for the 10-kilometre road race.
Hot temperatures and strong winds did their best to make things difficult for the field, but spurred on by enthusiastic support from thousands of spectators 4,237 runners finished the race.
The event, sponsored this year by Norwich Business Improvement District, was founded in 2015 with the aim of raising funds for local charities, attracting visitors to the city centre and boosting participation in running.
The race marked a happy return for the male and female defending champions, both returning to lift silverware for the second time.
City of Norwich Athletic Club’s Nick Earl, born in the city but now living in Australia, was first over the line in 32:23 – celebrating once again with his iconic finishing leap – a comfortable 17-seconds ahead of second placed Piers Arnold (CONAC).
The challenging conditions did little to deter first-placed female finisher Tracy Barlow (Thames Valley Harriers), whose time of 35:19 was close to 30-seconds quicker than her winning time last year.
Race newcomers Ruth Senior (CONAC) and Helen Davies (Ipswich Jaffa RC) finished second and third respectively, while Dave Roper (Cheltenham & County Harriers) rounded off the podium in the men’s race.
For many, though, their finishing position was not important. The event offered their first experience of a mass run and the chance to soak up the lively atmosphere and scenery, or to run for a chosen cause.
Over £70,000 was raised for the Community Sports Foundation and chosen race charities Norfolk Accident Rescue Service, Age UK Norwich and Nelson’s Journey in 2015, and the total is expected to surpass that this year.
Among those lending their support for the Foundation’s run were representatives from Norwich City Football Club including goalkeeper John Ruddy, defender Ryan Bennett, club chairman Ed Balls and board members Thomas Smith and Michael Wynn-Jones.
City joint majority shareholder and local icon Delia Smith was given the honour of starting the race.
Following the race, thousands of runners recuperated in the Race Village in Chapelfield Gardens where they got to enjoy live music and refreshments.
CSF Director Ian Thornton was delighted with the run, which he called ‘a significant event’ for the city.
“The tweaks to the route and the revised starting structure, allowed an extra thousand runners to enjoy the race, and the addition of the Cathedral Close to the route was stunning.”
“Emotions were high on the finish line. Triumph, tears, you name it – right from the first place to the very last. You could see how much it meant to everyone. Credit must go to them, particularly those raising money for charity. I hope they wear their medals with pride.”
He praised the support and hard work of race partners, sponsors and volunteers:
“There are so many individuals and organisations we are indebted to – the 300 volunteers who supported on the day, our race technical team and of course, our partner organisations The Forum, Visit Norfolk, Norwich BID, Norwich City Council and Norwich City Football Club.”
“This was only the second Run Norwich we have put on, so we will be contacting our runners shortly for their feedback to help us make year’s event even better.”
The Foundation wishes to thank all our race supporters and race sponsors including Ashtons Legal, Computer Service Centre, Aston Shaw, 4Sports Group, Riverside Leisure Centre and main race sponsor Norwich BID.
If you feel your business can add to this incredible support, please contact [email protected]
"Emotions were high on the finish line. Triumph, tears, you name it – right from the first place to the very last."
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