ATHLETICS: Champions return for Belfast City Marathon

Freddy Sittuk.
Freddy Sittuk.
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With just over 13 weeks to go to Sunday, June 5 for the SSE Airtricity Walled City Marathon in Londonderry, both defending champions Pauline Curley and Freddy Sittuk have confirmed their intentions to return.

Former Irish Olympian marathoner Pauline from Tullamore set a new course record of 2:47:29 when winning the ladies last year and is also a double winner of the Waterside Half Marathon.

Irish based Kenyan Freddy Sittuk will be chasing a hat-trick of Walled City Marathon wins having won in 2014 and then setting a new course record of 2:22:34 last year.

The online closing date is looming on Sunday, March 13, so participants should move quickly with full information available on www.thewalledcitymarathon.com. Meanwhile, at the recent launch of the Deep RiverRock Queens 5K ‘Race Around the River’ on Wednesday, April 20 it was confirmed that the event will include a new 3K warm-up race starting before the main event at 6.30.

The very popular race promoted by Queens Athletics Club and Queen’s Sport has grown dramatically in recent years and will once again include the Northern Ireland and Ulster 5K Championships.

Kevin Murray, Sports Development Officer at Queen’s said: “The expansion is testimony to the work of the Athletics Club and Queens Sport in making this one of the biggest events of the University calendar and with continuous support from Deep RiverRock and Belfast City Council we look forward to a great evening of running.”

Paul Polllock won last year’s 5K event by 13 seconds from Scott Rankin and Andrew Wright. Ann-Marie McGlynn took the ladies from Teresa Doherty and Natasha Adams with Conal McCambridge and Craig McMeechan heading the juniors.

There were 650 finishers with North Belfast winning both team titles.

Early entry is encouraged and details can be obtained on www.queenssport5k.com.