Aly Dixon retained her Blaydon Races title with a superb run at the world-famous road race tonight.
The Sunderland athlete was there to be shot at, given her status as defending women’s champion and as an Olympian.
But she judged her run to perfection and came home with her trademark “Borini” celebration as she approached the finish line in front of massive crowds.
“It was hard, but I was pleased with my run,” she said. “It took me 20 years to win my first Blaydon Race, so 21 years and two in a row feels good.
“I wanted to come back and win it again.
“It’s a really fast start, but I went off quite steady and got into a rhythm, but I had to work hard as I was never sure how far my rivals were behind me.”
Dixon finished inside the top 20 in a race dominated by Morpeth, ending just behind South Shields star Luke Adams and first Sunderland finisher Steve Rankin.