First Preston Guild Marathon

25 October 2012

The first ever Preston Guild marathon event takes place this Sunday October 28th. The day will see over 4000 runners compete in a junior mini-marathon, a half marathon and a full marathon. The event is the third run in the four part Guild Race Series.

All races begin and finish from Preston Flag Market in the city centre.

The full marathon runners are first to face the starting pistol at 9am, followed by the half marathon at 10am and the 11-17 year olds running the 4.7km mini marathon route set off at 10.15am.

 There a some accomplished athletes registered in the event so the winning groups are expected to be crossing the finishing line just after 11am for the half marathon and from approx 11.20am for the full marathon.  Around the Flag Market, there will be entertainment and live music to pass the time and full race commentary from Andy O’Sullivan.

Councillor Peter Rankin, Leader of Preston City Council added: “Organising the Guild Race Series and not least the Marathon event has been a huge undertaking by all involved but we have been extremely pleased with the enthusiasm with which the event has been received, even having to make amendments to the race route in order to accommodate the 4500 registrations. The race is bringing in runners and their supporters from far and wide which has generated new business for the Preston visitor economy. We are hopeful that the mini marathon and half marathon have inspired a number of people to take up the challenge and get active which of course was one of the aims of our designation of UK European City of Sport for 2012. We have done all we can to ensure it is a fantastic event. We need to thank local training clubs and organisations who have supported the event and our event sponsors United Utilities and Foot Traffic. However, when it comes to the weather on the day, all we can do is cross our fingers!”

Spectators are encouraged to line the route to cheer on and support the runners. There will be a number of road closures in and around Preston on Sunday morning. Spectators and visitors are advised to please check the Guild website for full route and road closure details.

 Spectators are also invited to attend the prize giving ceremony which will be held at Race HQ in Preston Guild Hall from 1pm

Ones to Watch

 Steve Edwards

Steve is a veteran Marathon runner – there isn’t much he doesn’t know about running the 26.2 mile race.

  • The youngest person to run 100 marathons, aged just 28.
  • Record holder for running the most marathons in a year (87)
  • Best veteran time for 10 marathons in 10 days totalling 33 hours and 16 minutes.
  • Ran his 500th marathon in 2010
  • Next goal is 500 3:30 marathons by 2012, If Steve finishes in less than 3.30 Preston will be his 499th!

Tomas Abyu
A member of the Salford Harriers but originally from Ethiopia, Tomas has already won marathons in Liverpool and Jersey this year.

  • Represented UK in the marathon at 2006 European Athletics Championships
  • Won Liverpool race in two hours 28 minutes 24 seconds and set a new course record in Jersey with a time of two hours, 24 minutes and 42 seconds.
  • Personal best of two hours 10 minutes 37 seconds.

Peter Ferris MBE

Peter has run 388 marathons including the world’s toughest 150 mile race in the Sahara Desert, Mount Everest 100 miler, North Pole and Antarctica raising over £500k!  John has run over 600 marathons and lies second in the UK.

Peter with fellow runners John Kew, Harold Reilly and Richard McLernon will be running 3 marathons in 3 days.

  • Snowdonia Marathon, Wales 27th Oct
  • Preston Marathon, 28th Oct
  • Dublin Marathon on 29th Oct.

Rowan Orton

Ms Orton brings a group of 5 soldiers from 34 Field Hospital over from York to do the marathon.  They will be raising money for BLESMA (British Limbless Ex-Servicemen’s Association). 

Mary (Sharon) Biggins

Known to her friends as ‘Sharon’, Ms Biggins will be running the Marathon as the finale to a 9 week challenge to raise money for Cancer Research in memory of her mum who sadly died this time last year. Since 2nd September each weekend has seen a new sporting challenge, in order these have been:- 10k AND half marathon at the Great Scottish Run,114 mile Glasgow to Edinburgh pedal Scotland Sportif, Great North Run, Eyemouth Triathlon, Berlin Marathon, Chicago Marathon, Liverpool Marathon, Amstersam Marathon and finishing with the Preston Guild Marathon. This was chosen as the final one as its an exciting new race.

A Few Facts

5 doctors

3 paramedics

30 first aiders

6 first aid posts

6 ambulances

25,000 bottles of water

Half marathon 2815 runners 13 miles

Full Marathon 1650 runners 26.2 miles

Mini marathon 50 runners 4.7km. Can register on the day for this race.

 Around 60% of the registered runners have come from outside of the city of Preston from all corners of the UK – some as far south as Hampshire and Somerset, runners from Scotland and a number travelling in from continental Europe!

 The final event in the Guild race series is the 10 mile run on November 18th.


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