Olympic Stadium welcomes runners

The Olympic Stadium was back in action at the weekend as over 17,000 runners competed in the inaugural Morrisons Great Newham London Run.

The run provided the first opportunity for thousands of people in London and across the country to get a preview of the Olympic Stadium as it is being transformed and take part in a 10k run, a 2k Family Run and a Team Relay race.

Marathon world-record holder Paula Radcliffe officially started the main 10km event.

Running is such a huge part of my life so I was thrilled to see thousands of runners, of all ages and abilities, take part in the Morrisons Great Newham London Run,” Radcliffe said.

“Being in the Stadium, where so many dreams came true in 2012, is really special. I’m so glad that?people are having the opportunity to use this amazing venue.”

Runners completed a circuit which took in the Lee Valley VeloPark, London Aquatics Centre and the Copper Box Arena before getting the chance to experience their very own ?Olympic Stadium moment? as they crossed the famous finish line and running track.

Newham and Essex Beagles Athletics Club runner John Beattie was the first person across the finish line, completing the course in 31 minutes 44 seconds. In second place was Peter Hawkings from Stratford (33:18) with Gus Upton finishing third (33:24).

The first woman to cross the finish line was Fiona Thompson running for Thames Valley Harriers in a time of 36 minutes and 50 seconds. Rosamund Ponder was second (37:12) with Fiona Walker in third (37:29).

The former Olympic Stadium is being transformed from its Games time use to become a world-class venue capable of delivering world-class sporting and cultural events.

It will open fully in 2016 when it becomes the home of West Ham United and the national competition centre for UK Athletics.

And if you missed out this year, don’t fret as entries for the Morrisons Great Newham London Run 2016 are already open at www.greatrun.org.

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