RUNNERS from over 16 countries took part in Sunday’s Great Limerick Run, the second successful staging of the event in the city.
Over 6,600 participants took part in the three different events, the marathon, half marathon and six mile run, making it the biggest participant event in Limerick’s European City of Sport celebrations this year.
Thousands of spectators also lined the streets of the route to cheer on the runners.
By far the bulk of participants took part in the six mile event, and with more than 4,000 people running, jogging and walking it took a full five minutes for them all to cross the starting line.
A huge number of people took part for charitable causes, while the biggest group running together on the day were the near 200 family, friends and colleagues of Castletroy College teacher Eamon Mulcahy, who died in December.
750 athletes took part in the full marathon, which was won by Monaleen’s Liz Husse, while Freddie Keron Sittuk, from Kenya, won the men’s event. Dubliner Brian McMahon and Angela McCann, from Clonmel, were the winners of the half marathon.
Sligo runners David Kelly and Mary Cullen - a bronze medallist in the European Indoor Championships in 2009 - crossed the line first in the six mile event, with Ballyclough athlete Orla Drumm finishing just behind Cullen in second place.
Martin Tynan, the event organiser, said he was delighted that the event went so well, and pointed to the increase in figures of participants of evidence of the future growth of the event.
“We are up this year on last in terms of numbers, so hopefully we can get it closer to our long term plan of 15,000 participants. It was a five year plan, so hopefully we can take another step towards that next year,” he said.
“The weather has been kind and we have 6,637 people taking part, so it is great for Limerick and everyone really enjoyed themselves,” he added.