Liverpool Scores A Hat Trick
There's plenty reasons for runners in Merseyside to celebrate this year...
There's a hat trick of top events on the cards for Merseyside this year, and they're all celebrating milestones in their own right - so get set for some partying on the streets of Liverpool as runners celebrate 30 years of the BTR Liverpool Skyline Half Marathon, 20 years of the BTR Liverpool Santa Dash and 10 years of the BTR Tour Of Merseyside.
The Half Marathon is set for 26 March, first staged in 1994, this is one of the longest established races in the region and a highlight in the North West race calendar. The race also attracts a strong number of overseas competitors.
The Santa Dash will take place on 3 December, a festive spectacular it was first staged in 2004 and is now highly regarded as the city’s kick-start to Christmas and thought to be the UK’s biggest festive 5K fun run.
The Tour Of Merseyside will start on 25 June, this special race has become a firm favourite since it was launched in 2013. It attracts runners from far and wide to take on a week-long challenge in a bid to become a Tourist.
The three events will appeal to very different audiences – from serious athletes pushing for a PB to families running together for fun and everyone in between, including many people taking part in their very first organised event.
The man at the helm of BTR is Liverpool-born race director Alan Rothwell who has completed more than 40 marathons including London and New York.
Here Alan takes a look back to how it all started: “I cannot remember a time when I didn’t run. My earliest memory of enjoying running was cross country season at school. I acknowledged early on that I was never going to make it as the dynamo in Everton’s midfield. Running became my passion. I had no clue about pace, distance or training, I just ran.
“The founding of London Marathon and Great North Run sparked a real running boom – and I found my spiritual home. I had a focus and direction for my casual, lone wolf running, and found myself on a self-indulgent crusade of purely running. Mile after mile, race after race.
“I took part in the very first 1994 Liverpool International Half Marathon, as it was then known, and met organisers Bill Sergeant and Jim Ross. It was a chance meeting, and they asked me to get involved. Fast forward to the present day, the race is owned, organised and delivered by BTR Liverpool – which stands for Born To Run. Very appropriate.
“Whether you are starting a couch to 5K journey or are a seasoned distance runner looking for your next high octane challenge, BTR is looking forward to welcoming you to be part of our special year of celebration and achievement.”
If you'd like to be a part of the anniversary celebrations, then find out more at the BTR Liverpool website.
Image: BTR Liverpool/Paul Francis Cooper