East Coast Run 2012 will feature full marathon for the first time

The annual East Coast Run will feature a full-length marathon for the first time in its five years of existence, as the organisers celebrate a quarter century.

The Sunday, October 21 run - traditionally an open-to-all 10km race along the seafront - will this year be held alongside a marathon, with athletes competing across 26.2 miles of Yarmouth town and seafront, covering more than four times the distance of the 10km race.

Organisers Yarmouth Road Runners are celebrating their 25th anniversary with the one-off marathon, and are urging people to sign up for the 10km race as they look to ensure its continued success.

Road Runners chairman and race director Jeffrey Helmore said: “This is a real special one-off as we are too small to do this annually.

“The idea came about because we were thinking that most runners get into the sport because they want to run the London Marathon. We thought if the main goal of a runner is to take part in a marathon, so the pinnacle of our club should be to put one on, and include the 25 year celebration with it.

“This is also putting something back into running. We are involved in running all over the county, it is nice to put something on for someone else.

“Local marathons are a bit few and far between and this brings a bit of kudos to the town. The council and local people have got well behind it and given us the support we need, we couldn’t put it on without them and it went very well last year.

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“And it promotes the town, and especially with the Olympic year there is obviously quite a sport spin-off from that and we will hopefully have a few people taking part who haven’t before.”

Mr Helmore added that the runners’ ranks could include founder members of the Road Runners club, still fighting fit and raring to race.

Medals are being made especially for this race, which will be given to all runners, and souvenir T-shirts will be on sale.

Last year 500 people took part in the 10km race, some travelling from Scotland and Wales and many running in aid of charities. This will be the fifth year the borough council and the Road Runners have come together to stage the East Coast Run.

The marathon will begin at 9am, and the 10km at 10.30am.

Setting off from near St George’s Park, the 10km route will head down Trafalgar Road and onto the seafront.

Heading along Marine Parade and then North Drive, the runners will turn around close to Haven Holiday Park before heading back along the same route, cutting down onto the Promenade near the Salisbury Road toilets and heading all the way along to near the Pleasure Beach.

The race will then cut back onto and along Marine Parade, back down Trafalgar Road and finish at St George’s Park.

Meanwhile the marathon will use the same route, with runners lapping it three times, with an additional loop around the South Quay and Hartman Road area.

To sign up or get more information call 07858376922, email londoncanary@hotmail.com or visit www.gyrr.co.uk