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Issue:- 17 October 2014

Runaway Success for Wirral half marathon

PERFECT weather conditions and improved race courses greeted 2,200 keen runners in Wirral at the weekend. The 2nd annual BTR Wirral Half Marathon and 10K took place on Sunday (12 October), and the point to point races were hailed all-round successes with a large number of runners achieving personal best times on the day.

Both the 10K and the half marathon covering 13.1 miles started with a one-mile route through Birkenhead Park and finished in New Brighton. The course took all runners along a coastal route past Seacombe Ferry, Egremont Promenade and Fort Perch Rock, with views across to the Liverpool waterfront as a backdrop.

The 10K runners then veered off to finish their race on Coastal Drive, while the half marathon runners continued along King's Parade and the North Wirral Coastal Path to Leasowe Lighthouse, before returning to Coastal Drive to complete their race.

The BTR Wirral 10K was won by James Riley (Liverpool Harriers) with a time of 32:04, with the first female finisher being Alex O'Brien (Liverpool Running Club) in 37:42.

The winner of the BTR Wirral Half Marathon was Tarus Elly (Salford Harriers) in 1:08:47, with Jenny Clague (Liverpool Harriers) being the first female finisher in 1:22:58.

Eldest runner on the day was Wirral's very own Eddy Mountford, aged 91, who ran the 10K in 1:30:22. Eddy only began running aged 58, and has since completed 30 marathons and countless 10Ks and half marathons.

The event also attracted a number of charity runners, and overseas runners who had travelled from Norway and Poland to participate.

Race Director Alan Rothwell said:- "We are delighted with this year's event. The race conditions were perfect, much kinder than last year, and the runners certainly took advantage with a lot achieving personal best times on the fast and flat courses. The improved courses meant that all the runners enjoyed more distance in scenic Birkenhead Park, and then further route changes to the Half Marathon course round Leasowe which worked well. The finish area at New Brighton is fantastic, giving the runners an excellent space for a sprint finish before they collected their special finishers' medal, T-shirt and goody bag. We have to say a big thank you to the volunteers who make such a big difference on race days, as well as the spectators who provided encouraging support along the course."

Quickly becoming established on the Wirral events calendar, the event was shortlisted as Event Of The Year in the Wirral Tourism Awards 2014... A huge coup to be recognised in its inaugural year.

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