Thousands of runners take part in Liverpool half marathon
THOUSANDS of runners flocked to Liverpool’s waterfront for the city’s half marathon.
Yesterday’s race saw a record number of competitors put on their trainers and take to the city’s streets.
Paul Sankey raced to an impressive victory in what was the 17th Liverpool half marathon.
The Liverpool RC star ensured there was a home triumph as he completed the 13.1m course in one hour, 13 minutes and 24 seconds.
This year’s event, which started and finished on the waterfront next to the ECHO Arena, attracted a record entry of 5,500 runners – up 37% on last year.
It was the biggest field in the race’s history and the runners, who came from as far afield as Canada, Hong Kong, Spain and Norway, enjoyed glorious sunny conditions.
The course passed Brunswick, Coburg and Queens Docks, before turning towards Princes Park, looping through Sefton Park and curving around Otterspool Park.
The Atlantic Way then took runners back to the waterfront and the finish.
For competitor Louise Pearce, 31, from Aigburth, the race was her 10th half marathon.
She said: “It was my first Liverpool half marathon and it was absolutely amazing.
“It was the best course I have ever run and it made Liverpool look absolutely beautiful. Running down the docks and the waterfront was incredible.
“It was a beautiful day and the crowds were really good.
“They were all lined up along Princes Park and Sefton Park, and at the waterfront there were crowds and crowds of people.”
Louise said the city setting spurred her on to the finish line.
She added: “I ran my personal best, so I am really pleased with that.”
Sankey, who finished sixth last year, came home 11 seconds clear of Martin Malone.
Brendan Rothery came third (1:14.13) with Christian Prior fourth (1:14.59).
Wirral AC’s Xavier Desse was fifth (1:15.25), while Liverpool Pembroke Sefton’s Bernie Murphy was seventh (1:15.50).
Julie Briscoe emphatically won the women’s race in 1:16:56. Liverpool Harriers’ Jenny Clague was second (1:20.41) with Sarah Ridehalgh (1:22.30) completing the podium.
Traffic diversions were in place along the route and Merseyside police said the event went smoothly with no incidents.