A ROAD race which pulls hundreds of runners into Hartlepool is on the way - with some important changes.
Up to 550 people will tackle this year’s Hartlepool Marina 5 Mile Road Race which is organised by the town’s Burn Road Harriers Athletics Club.
The race starts at 10.30am on Sunday, March 29, from the Hartlepool’s Maritime Experience.
And as Harriers chairperson Jane Wistow explained, there’s plenty to look forward to this year.
“We are having the race chip timed this year which means everyone’s times start as soon as they cross the start line. It makes it a lot more accurate in time.
“We have opened up entries to a maximum of 550 people and we have already had more than 200 people entered the road race. We are encouraging people to apply quickly.”
This year’s entries will also be completely taken through online entries and Jane said the race attracted both unaffiliated runners and those who are affiliated to an athletics club.
“We get people from all across the UK as well as those from the North-East,” Jane added.
Last year, Wondiye Indelbu’s victory at the Marina 5 was seen by the 26-year-old as one of his best successes since he won UK residency. The Ethiopian, who lost his right arm and right eye as a nine-year-old when his village came under attack, sought asylum in Britain after his second place in the 1,500 metres at London 2012.
He won the Marina race in 24 minutes 45 seconds with Dominic Shaw second in 25m 08s. Shaw’s New Marske teammate James Bulman was a further minute back in 26m 07s.
Paul Wilson ran superbly to be the first Hartlepool runner home in fifth.
Tracey Waller was the first lady home, finishing in 30m 26s in 41st spot. The Burn Road athlete was one of 12 host runners in the top 60 runners.
Now the attention turns to this year’s race and organisers say the course is fast and flat with a chance for personal records to be broken.
The cost of taking part this year is £12 for unaffiliated runners and £10 for anyone who affiliated to an athletics club.
To enter the race, visit http://www.runbritain.com/race/hartlepool-marina-5-mile-road-race-hartlepool-marina-5-mile-road-race