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The Great East Run might be even bigger in 2018

PUBLISHED: 20:00 25 September 2017

The first Simplyhealth Great East Run in Ipswich. The 3,000 race capacity may be expanded next year.  Picture: ANDY ABBOTT

The first Simplyhealth Great East Run in Ipswich. The 3,000 race capacity may be expanded next year. Picture: ANDY ABBOTT

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The Great East Run could be even bigger when it returns to Ipswich next year, organisers have hinted.

The first Simplyhealth Great East Run in Ipswich

Picture: ANDY ABBOTT The first Simplyhealth Great East Run in Ipswich Picture: ANDY ABBOTT

With the town still buzzing from Sunday’s inaugural event, there are hopes the 3,000 entry limit could be raised.

Places were snapped up quickly this year, and a spokeswoman for the Great Run Company, the organisation behind the event and which also stages the world famous Great North Run, said the high demand would be taken into consideration next year.

She said: “It’s fantastic that the Simplyhealth Great East Run has received such an overwhelmingly positive response from both runners and the huge number of spectators that were out in force.

“Increasing the number of entries into the 2018 event will be something that will be reviewed with all partners and the huge demand for places this year will be taken into consideration.”

Banana men Craig Fookes and Adam Williams taking part in Sunday's race.

Picture: ANDY ABBOTT Banana men Craig Fookes and Adam Williams taking part in Sunday's race. Picture: ANDY ABBOTT

• Can you spot yourself in our Great East Run 2017 gallery?

Sunday’s event created a carnival atmosphere in the town, as runners tackled a course which took in many local landmarks, headed out to Freston, before finishing back in town at Ipswich Town’s stadium.

And there’s no doubt an even bigger field of runners would only add to that.

Event director Carl Ashton, from Ipswich Jaffa Running Club, said: “The event underlines Ipswich as a regional centre for sport, and in particular running.

“Alongside the increasingly popular Ipswich Building Society Twilight Races, it demonstrates the appetite for running locally whilst supporting Suffolk County Council’s ambition to be the most active county.

“There is a lot of planning and organisation goes into putting this event on and I’d like to thank all the volunteers and marshals that gave up their time yesterday, the event doesn’t happen without their support.”

• The results of the Great East Run 2017

Colin Grogan, sport, health and inclusion manager at Suffolk County Council said it was great to see so many people come to Ipswich to not only take part, but also spectate and support.

“Those who came to Ipswich will have boosted the economy through using cafes, bars and hotels. The run has certainly put Ipswich and Suffolk on the map and we’ve heard positive things about the route and the event itself. So far around a third of those who took part have filled in a survey about their experience, which we will be able to use to shape next year’s event.”

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