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Competitors ready and raring to go for Great East Run 2018 in Ipswich this weekend

PUBLISHED: 08:18 15 September 2018 | UPDATED: 08:18 15 September 2018

Team GB runner Lily Partridge  inspired the pupils at Britannia Primary School  Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

Team GB runner Lily Partridge inspired the pupils at Britannia Primary School Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

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Runners across the county are limbering up for tomorrow’s Great East Run.

Over 3,5000 runners will be taking part in the half marathon distance on Sunday in Ipswich.

Entrants will be starting on Russell Road before heading through the town centre to Holywells Park and the Waterfront before heading out of central Ipswich.

After passing under the Orwell bridge they will return to town finishing at Portman Road.

Entries for this year’s event sold out within months of opening after what organisers described as “unprecedented demand.”

Children at Britannia Primary School took part in their first Daily Mile of the year  Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWNChildren at Britannia Primary School took part in their first Daily Mile of the year Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

Over 70 roads will be closed in town while the event takes place with plenty of space for spectators to enjoy the day’s event.

Ahead of the big day marathon runner and elite athlete ambassador for the race Lily Partirdge met with youngsters across the county including Abbots Green Primary School in Bury St Edmunds, Wells Hall Primary School in Sudbury and Britannia Primary School in Ipswich.

In Ipswich she joined over 300 children taking part in the Daily Mile challenge which is undertaken by school’s across the county.

Among those taking part in the race itself will be 79-year-old David Cooper.

Team GB runner Lily Partridge   Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWNTeam GB runner Lily Partridge Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

Mr Cooper has Motor Neurone Disease and will be completing the race in a wheelchair.

“My upper body strength has always been quite reasonable, so I have now found something I can do to utilise it,” said Mr Cooper.

“I do a lot of long-distance country pushes and I enjoy going to the gym so I go every other day and I’ve worked on getting stronger.”

James Reeder, Cabinet Member for Health at Suffolk County Council is hoping that supporters will be out in force on Sunday to get behind the runners: “It’s testament to the success of last year’s inaugural Great East Run that a further 500 people will be taking to the start line on Sunday to complete their own personal challenge.

“Support along the route for participants last year was fantastic and I would encourage residents to come out again, get involved, and give the runners a cheer as they pass by, as I know it makes a real difference.”

Organisers hope that the event will continue to increase the profile of East Anglia as a tourist destination.

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