Thousands of athletes defy bad weather for Sunderland runs

RUN: Runners brave the wet weather to take part in the Sunderland 10K and Half Marathon event Picture: DAVID WOOD
RUN: Runners brave the wet weather to take part in the Sunderland 10K and Half Marathon event Picture: DAVID WOOD
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THOUSANDS of runners braved the rain and wind to take part in the fifth annual Sunderland City Half Marathon and 10k runs.

An estimated 3,500 athletes from all over the region lined up at the Stadium of Light which served as the start and finishing points for both events.

Around 100 entrants from the Sunderland Strollers running club dedicated the day to fellow member Nicola Norton, 38, who died of cancer just last month.

Nicola signed up to run with Sunderland Strollers last year and was training for last year’s half marathon run when medics discovered she had tumours in her heart and brain after suffering a stroke.

Among those running in her memory was Sunderland Stroller Aly Dixon, 36, who was the first female runner across the line in the 10k run in just under 35 minutes.

The winner of the 10k event was 27-year-old Wondiye Fikre Indelbu, from Middlesbrough in 32 minutes.

In the half marathon, Tadele Geremew, 30, of Elswick Harriers in Newcastle, was victorious.

And delighted Louise Rodgers, 41, from Seaham, was victorious for the women.

Event founder Steve Cram said: “It has been a hard day for the runners and everybody involved in making it all happen but I’m so pleased so many people came out and took part despite what has to be probably the worst conditions we have ever had.”