Big hills and huge smiles at Sheffield Half Marathon
A banana, a pair of boobs, ballerinas and more than 7,000 other runners took on the Sheffield Half Marathon at the weekend.
They battled hills, cold and a little drizzle on the 13 mile course that went through the city centre and out towards the Peak District.
Whether it was raising money for an important cause or achieving a personal best, everyone had an inspiring story to tell.
A team from Rotherham Hospital ran to raise awareness of prostate cancer after a friend was diagnosed. Simon Taylor, James Jones and Donna Perkins took on the challenge for Brian Rafferty, who said: “It’s unbelievable. The hard miles they put in and even people not running today have come along in support. I couldn’t say I’m grateful because that’s such a massive understatement, I’m so proud of everybody.”
Ethan Snow, a Sheffield Hallam University student, ran in a banana suit to raise money for underprivileged children in Tanzania. While Niamh Hardy and Millie Watson ran the course dressed as a pair of boobs to raise awareness of breast cancer.
A group of 10 from Doncaster Athletics Club dressed up as pink laddies. One member of the group, Daz Lambert, said they felt “marvellous” and added: “We are doing it to show that running is not just about being serious, you can have a laugh as well. A lot of us have done marathons and halves in the past so we are just doing it for fun.”
Pete Jenkins donned a post box outfit and ran alongside his friend Warren Edwicker who came as an Oompa Loompa. Pete said: “We’re running to support Barnsley Samaritans and taking on the Leeds Marathon in June too. We were a bit nervous as we heard there was a big hill right at the start but as long as there's no wind to blow my telephone box we’ll be alright.”
Also out on the course was John Burkhill, ‘man with the pram’, who was running the event for the 37th time, every year since 1982.
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The city's music community were also out in force and running to raise money for Weston Park Cancer Charity and Cavendish Cancer Care in honour of Sarah Nulty, the late Tramlines director. They called themselves the 'most unlikely marathon team ever' but said Sarah would have loved it.
The fastest time of the day came from Jamie Hall, of Huntingdonshire AC, who crossed the line in one hour and 11 minutes. He said: “It was a tough course but a really good surprise to win, I was just aiming to get under one hour and 15 minutes so wasn’t expecting this.”
The fastest female was Phillipa Williams who finished the course in one hour and 17 minutes.
After crossing the line on Pinstone Street all runners enjoyed some free beer in true Sheffield style and collected their medals and t-shirts.