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Record turnout of runners at Great Yarmouth Half Marathon

PUBLISHED: 13:56 13 August 2018 | UPDATED: 13:56 13 August 2018

Runners in action at the Great Yarmouth Half Marathon. Picture: Elise Mitchell

Runners in action at the Great Yarmouth Half Marathon. Picture: Elise Mitchell

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A record field of 380 runners took part in the Great Yarmouth Road Runners’ Half Marathon on Sunday.

Andrew Dormer was Great Yarmouth Road Runners' highest placed runner at the Great Yarmouth Half Marathon. Picture: GYRRAndrew Dormer was Great Yarmouth Road Runners' highest placed runner at the Great Yarmouth Half Marathon. Picture: GYRR

A record field of 380 runners took part in the Great Yarmouth Road Runners’ Half Marathon on Sunday.

The 13.1-mile course starts and finishes on the edge of Gorleston and meanders around the pretty surrounding countryside, passing through the villages of Lound and Somerleyton.

The course undulates in places with one or two well-timed hills to test even the fittest athletes.

This year’s event was blessed with good conditions being somewhat cooler than recent races, but it was still warm for the near 400 competitors who all reached the welcome sight of the finish line within three hours.

Rachel Sweatt of Witham Running Club claimed victory at the Great Yarmouth Half Marathon. Picture: GYRRRachel Sweatt of Witham Running Club claimed victory at the Great Yarmouth Half Marathon. Picture: GYRR

The event attracted some of the region’s top club runners and beginners alike with the largest field ever recorded.

MORE: Love running? Join the Run Anglia Facebook group here

Leading the pack was Ely Runner’s Alan Derby who clinched a convincing win over last year’s winner Neil Hume from Garden City Runners. Their times were 1-13:36 and 1-15:31 respectively. Stephen Balfe from City of Norwich Athletic Club was third in 1-17:37.

In the ladies race, Rachel Sweatt of Witham Running Club, held her lead to claim victory in 1-21:55, taking fifth place overall in the process.

Sam Lines of Waveney Valley AC was close behind in 1-22:43 and Natalie Lawrence was third in 1-28:26.

Alan Derby on his way through Somerleyton at the Great Yarmouth Half Marathon. Picture: GYRRAlan Derby on his way through Somerleyton at the Great Yarmouth Half Marathon. Picture: GYRR

The event was the ninth out of the 11 Sportlink Grand Prix races where athletes compete in races from 5k to 20 miles to accumulate points to find the top three runners in each age category over the season.

Team success was earned by Norwich Road Runners who were awarded the prizes for the senior ladies and both the vets ladies and men. Lowestoft Road Runners won the senior mens award.

MORE: Check out our 2018 race event calendar

Feedback for the race has been very complimentary, with many competitors commenting on the friendly and supportive marshals and the superb organisation.

As the organisers of any event will testify there are hours of hard work and planning that goes into hosting a race.

Race directors, Mark Stone and Andrew Baker, worked tirelessly with a support team to ensure the smooth running of the event and were thrilled with its success.

Entries are now open for the next GYRR race which is the East Coast 10k that takes place on October 14. Check out the website www.gyrr.co.uk for more information.

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