Olympic champ James Cracknell wants half marathon in ‘spectacular Weston for years to come’

PUBLISHED: 12:31 30 January 2018 | UPDATED: 12:31 30 January 2018

James Cracknell at Weston Grand Pier to promote Weston super Half Marathon.

James Cracknell at Weston Grand Pier to promote Weston super Half Marathon.

Archant

Just six weeks remain until the starting pistol fires for Weston-super-Mare’s inaugural half marathon, and double Olympic champion James Cracknell is calling on people to take part.

Weston super Half Marathon, the brainchild of the legendary rower, will be held on March 18, taking in the ‘beautiful’ sights of the town’s seafront.

The deadline for entries is fast approaching, and Cracknell encouraged people to sign up for the 13-mile race – which will lead runners along the coast and through the countryside to Brean and back again.

The 45-year-old told the Mercury Weston’s ‘spectacular’ scenery inspired him to create the event, and he hopes it has a lasting legacy.

He said: “I was in Weston for a fundraising event and I thought this would be a great place for a run. I realised there wasn’t one here, so I thought I’d make it happen.

“Weston is brilliant and beautiful; it’s a great place to run and the route takes in all the town has to offer. About 40 per cent of the course is along the beach, with the rest in the countryside and in the town centre where there will be a great atmosphere.

“When you have a run which takes in the beautiful waterfront and countryside, ending on the Grand Pier and using the transport connections and places to stay in Weston, it makes for a great event.

“A lot of work has gone into this to get it to this point, you don’t want to put that much effort into something for it to be a one-off event. I want the residents of Weston to have an event their proud of for years to come.

“It feels like the stress of planning a wedding, and then you get to enjoy the day. At the moment we’re in the pre-wedding phase and I’m a bit like bridezilla, but it will be a brilliant day.”

Pier co-owner Kerry Michael said he was ‘delighted and proud’ to be involved in the event.

Cracknell, who won coxless fours gold medals at the Sydney and Athens games, believes the event is accessible to anyone.

He said: “A half is a long way to run, but it’s very different to a marathon. If you have a training structure which you build into your weekly life then anyone can do it.

“We also have the Community Mile for kids and families to enjoy.”

To enter the half marathon, visit www.westonsuperhalf.co.uk

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