Suffolk/Essex: Marathon runners do counties proud in London

Runners at the start of the Virgin Money London Marathon. Photo: Tim Ireland/PA Wire. Runners at the start of the Virgin Money London Marathon. Photo: Tim Ireland/PA Wire.

Monday, April 14, 2014
1:25 PM

Marathon runners from Suffolk and north Essex gave every last drop of energy to cross the finish line in the Virgin London Marathon yesterday.

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They took part alongside celebrities including former footballer Michael Owen, TV presenter Jenni Falconer, chef Michele Roux Jnr and Framlingham’s very own Laura Wright.

Leanne Griffiths, 27, who grew up in Thurston and completed the race in 4h 39m in support of the Lewy Body Society, said: “The race was difficult.

“I hit the wall at about 20 miles, but the crowd, and my support crew, were amazing. My reason for doing it managed to keep me going until the end.”

Daniel Turner, 29, an NHS electrician from Moreton Hall in Bury, managed to smash his target of four hours, completing the race in 3h 52m.

He was running for the children’s cancer charity CLIC Sargent since losing his girlfriend, Michelle Dring, to the disease in October 2009, aged just 24. “I got to 22 miles and I could have quite easily rolled over the side of the road and stopped, but everyone keeps you going.”

Publican Hannah Clark, who runs the Old Cannon Brewery, in Bury, finished in 5h 34m and Chris Camps, from Newmarket, made a time of 4h 42m.

Vet Jamie Whittle, who raised more than £1,000 for EACH from his run, completed the course in 3h 26m.

Mr Whittle, 37, of Trimley St Mary, said: “The whole day and experience was fantastic, the weather was brilliant, and to see my wife Amy and the children, Hazel and Tristram, cheering me on was just brilliant.”

Jignesh Patel, 45, an eye surgeon at Colchester’s Essex County Hospital, ran 4h 40m. He said: “When I came round the corner and saw the finish line all the power came back in my legs and I just sprinted for the end.”

He was raising money for the Childhood Eye Cancer Trust to help combat retinoblastoma, a rare form of cancer which affects the retina of children mainly under six years old.

Sarah White, 38, a Year 1 teacher at Kingsfleet Primary School in Felixstowe, running for Breast Cancer Campaign, was “really chuffed” with her time of 4h 25m.

Craig Stammers, 33, from Halesworth, completed his first marathon in 3h 51m, narrowly missing his target time of 3h 45m.

“I’m pleased with how it went, but it was just so hot out there,” he said. “I’ve never experienced anything like it.”

Mr Stammers’ daughter suffers from cystic fibrosis and he raised around £6,000 for the Cystic Fibrosis Trust.

Kim Frost, 36, ran her first marathon with fellow Framlingham Flyer, Lynn Whittingstall. Miss Frost, who was raising money for Cancer Research, said she began well but started to struggle around the 20-mile mark, finishing in around 5h 30m. Mrs Whittingstall, was rasing money for the East Anglian Air Ambulance Trust.

Laura Gibbs, 25, of Clacton, crossed the finishing line in 5h 12m, after deciding to run the marathon for Macmillan Cancer Care in memory of her nan Rose, losing 11 stone during her training. “It was such a great atmosphere, there were so many people shouting you on – it was so exhilarating,” she said.

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