It was a morning of celebration on Merseyside as almost 7,000 runners took part in the 21st BTR Liverpool Half Marathon on Sunday (23 March). Despite cold weather conditions and strong winds, there was a warm and welcoming atmosphere amongst competitors and spectators with Liverpool FC manager Brendan Rodgers officially starting the race at Pier Head.
The half marathon attracted runners from 21 countries to mark what is also the curtain-raiser to BTR’s six-event line-up for the forthcoming year. The line-up includes Port Sunlight 10K and the unique Mersey Tunnel 10K. The half marathon route took runners past some of the city’s key landmarks including UNESCO World Heritage Sites the Liverpool Waterfront and Albert Dock, as well as Museum Of Liverpool, Liverpool Cathedral, Sefton Park Palm House, and Otterspool Promenade.
Rodgers, who had initially planned to take part in the race, presented the trophy to first-place finisher and Liverpool fan, Andrew Davies. The Maldwyn runner finished in 1:09:52, more than a minute ahead of second placed Jorge Varela (1:11:10), with Liverpool Harriers’ James Riley in third place in 1:12:37. Davies later commented: “I had heard a rumour that Brendan would be here today but it was brilliant to be presented with my trophy by him. I'm hoping he has a few more trophies to hold this year."
In the women’s field, Nikki Boyde took top place in 1:26:16, with Kelly Morgan following in 1:27:14 and Liverpool Running Club’s Alex O’Brian in third (1:27:34). Richard Bootle was the mid-point runner in 2:01:06, while the last competitor came home in 3:36:11.
Event director Alan Rothwell commented: “Despite challenging weather conditions, we had an encouraging turn-out of over 6,800 runners to mark the 21st anniversary run of the BTR Liverpool Half Marathon. We were delighted to have Liverpool FC Manager Brendan Rodgers to start the race, and he was a great sport meeting fans and making the official presentations.”
Alan continued: “It was a fantastic sight to see so many runners enjoying the challenging course, despite the last four miles along the Liverpool Waterfront proving particularly tough in strong winds – but that didn’t deter the more experienced runners who recorded some impressive times. The support along the course was excellent to see, and we have to particularly thank our hundreds of volunteers for their help on the day.”
Full results are available at our race listings page.