The North East’s biggest 10k run celebrated its 10th birthday on Sunday as 5,000 took part in the Simplyhealth Great North 10K Gateshead. Among the field were 200 Gurkhas, the Nepalese soldiers who have now become one of the most popular and defining features of the event.
Having started in Sunderland in 2009 before moving to Gateshead in 2011, the 10k took runners along the scenic NewcastleGateshead Quayside, passing Sage Gateshead, BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art and the Gateshead Millennium Bridge.
The route also passed under the Tyne Bridge, an iconic feature of its sister event, the Simplyhealth Great North Run. Over half of the runners who conquered their 10k challenge today are going on to take part in the world's biggest half marathon this September.
The race marked another victory for Gemma Steel at a Great Run event following her first place showing at Glasgow last month. Steel was in good form and crossed the line in 35:22 (placing her fifth overall) more than two minutes ahead of Heaton Harriers’ Danielle Smythe (37:57) and Gateshead Harriers’ Mary Ferrier (39:59).
Steel, who has now triumphed at Gateshead on three separate occasions, later tweeted: “Enjoyed the @simplyhealthuk Great North 10k today. Loved being part of the fantastic atmosphere once again and winning the 10th anniversary of the race for the third time makes it extra special. The course doesn’t get any easier but grateful to have Brendan Foster cheering us on the slog on the Tyne uphill section of the course.”
Chris Steele (33:16), sixth at the Great Manchester Run, prevailed in a close contest with Gateshead Harriers’ Conrad Franks (33:23). Evenwood Road Runners’ John Clifford claimed third in 34:22.
Laura Miller, from Simplyhealth, said: “It was fantastic to see so many people making the most of life as they completed the Simplyhealth Great North 10k with smiles on their faces as family and friends cheered them over the line.Congratulations to everyone who took part.”