Up to 200 Gurkhas will once again line up for this weekend’s Great North 10K; the Nepalese soldiers have become a popular fixture at the event having competed in four previous years. The race, sister to the Great North Run, looks likely to attract around 5,000 runners this Sunday (3 July).
Now in its eighth year, the 10k sees participants tackle a route that takes in iconic landmarks on the Quayside including Sage Gateshead, the Baltic Centre and the Gateshead Millennium Bridge before crossing the finish line on the Gateshead International Stadium track.
The Gurkhas have become a welcome addition to the race and incorporate the 10k within their intensive 39 week training course. It is also part of their cultural orientation programme.
Sgt Jitendra Tamang said: “We feel very proud to be taking part in the Great North 10K again. We are very excited because we will gain a new experience helping us to enhance camaraderie and sportsmanship. The Gurkhas are coming - Aayo Gurkhali!”
David Hart, communications director at The Great Run Company, is delighted with their continued participation: “This is the fifth year that we have welcomed the Gurkhas to the Great North 10K, and we are delighted that they have once again chosen this event to continue their training.”