Stroud success at half marathon
MORE than 1,600 runners pushed themselves to the limit over 13 miles around Stroud yesterday.
The annual Stroud Half Marathon attracted everyone from elite athletes to fun runners decked out in fancy dress.
Temperatures were down with the course under fog for most of the morning and Stroud AC's Anders Russell made the most of favourable conditions.
His second place overall was the best result for a Stroud AC runner for many years in the event which takes in Stonehouse, Standish, Moreton Valence and Whitminster.
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He finished almost six minutes behind Luka Rotich, who crossed the line in 1hr 3min 47secs – the fastest time in 10 years and two minutes off the event record.
An ecstatic Stephen Price completed the top three, with Edina Kwambai fourth overall and first female.
"It went really well," said Anders, just after he crossed the finish line in Cainscross Road. "It's about 10 seconds off last year's time, but I am really happy with that. It's a better result than I expected."
The event was about more than just the elite, as all faced personal bests to beat or goals to achieve.
Entrants dressed as Spiderman, the 118 runners and a pirate took to the line, along with one of the event's long-standing supporters.
Mike Adlam, from Edge, has raised £122,000 over the years he has run the event for the Williams Syndrome charity.
Among the crowds lining the streets was double Olympian Dan Robinson, with sons Jasper and Max – the day after his wife Jess gave birth to an as yet unnamed girl.
Secondary school runners competed in a mile dash along Cainscross Road, with primary children covering a kilometre.
Stroud AC's Jack Turner couldn't hold Cheltenham runner Dimitry Nazarenko's late surge in the Silver Mile, but the Sir William Romney School student held on to second ahead of Bristol schoolboy George Marshall.
Stroud AC's Lizzie Sutton was best under-15 girl, and fourth overall.