Organisers of Sheffield’s new look half marathon have praised runners, volunteers and supporters after the inaugural event was hailed a big success.
Thousands of people lined the route of the Plusnet Yorkshire Half Marathon from Sheffield city centre to Ringinglow and back on Sunday as over 7,500 runners completed the tough 13.1 mile course.
The Lord Mayor of Sheffield, Councillor Peter Rippon, said: “I hope that the thousands of runners who took to Sheffield’s streets during the inaugural Yorkshire Half Marathon – Sheffield enjoyed taking on such a beautiful yet challenging route.
“We are delighted the race organisers chose such a stunning route, showing some of the countryside which surrounds our wonderful city and helps to make it such a great city in which to live, study, work and play.
“I hope that this very successful half marathon, in conjunction with Run for All, will continue to grow and thrive in the years to come.”
Event lead Lynne Preston said: “We’ve had some great feedback already from runners who told us they loved this scenic, yet challenging course. A huge thank you to all of those who took part, but also every single one of the volunteers without whom the event just couldn’t happen.
“A special thank you, too, to the thousands of Sheffield residents who came out to cheer on the runners right around the course. They created a great atmosphere for everyone taking part.”
There were some criticisms about the amount of time it took for runners to retrieve their bags at the end of the race and others said emergency foil blankets needed to be provided more quickly.
But in general the bulk of the feedback was positive.
Roz Massey from Totley AC, said: “Amazing support all the way. Couldn’t have been better. Loved the course too.”
While Steve Franklin, also from the club, said: “The support was absolutely phenomenal. From Hunter’s Bar up to Ringinglow there were times when it felt like you were part of a Tour de France Peleton, everyone cheering you on and almost funnelling the runners. “Dore was exceptional too and then coming back down from Banner Cross was great, with the help of gravity and support it felt like you were flying. I also felt the finish at the Peace Gardens was very nice, right in the heart of the city, there was a real buzz about.”
Among the famous faces taking part were Sheffield’s own superstar boxer Kell Brook, referee Howard Webb and Look North presenters Harry Gration and Nicola Rees.
Hundreds of youngsters were also cheered on as they took part in the event’s free Arena Group Mini and Junior runs, while the Team Challenge – in which groups of friends and colleagues got together to compete in a race within a race – also proved popular.
Charities set to benefit are Roundabout, Myaware, Bluebell Wood Children’s Hospice, Macmillan Cancer Care, The Children’s Hospital Charity, Sheffield Hospitals Charity, CLIC Sargent, St Luke’s Hospice, Breast Cancer Care and the Jane Tomlinson Appeal.