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Everything you need to know about the Twilight 5k

PUBLISHED: 19:00 10 April 2019 | UPDATED: 10:24 10 May 2019

Start of the Elite 5K.  Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

Start of the Elite 5K. Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

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Thousands of people are set to pound the streets of Ipswich this weekend for the Twilight 5k road races - which is hosting the national championships for the first time ever in 2019.

Jason and Alex Georgalas with their medals.  Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWNJason and Alex Georgalas with their medals. Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

Race director Carl Ashton said the bumper event helps to boost Ipswich's economy and put the town on the map.

"It promises to be a fantastic, free to spectate event, bringing high quality athletics to Ipswich Waterfront," he said.

"I really want to call out to local people to come out spectate and visit some of the many food and drink outlets on the Waterfront."

Carl Ashton (race director), Fiona Hotston Moore (partner at Ensors Chartered Accountants) & Richard Norrington (Ipswich Building Society Chief Executive)  wearing the newly designed Twilight Road Race t-shirts, chosen by public vote.
Picture: KRISTIE HENRYCarl Ashton (race director), Fiona Hotston Moore (partner at Ensors Chartered Accountants) & Richard Norrington (Ipswich Building Society Chief Executive) wearing the newly designed Twilight Road Race t-shirts, chosen by public vote. Picture: KRISTIE HENRY

What are the Twilight road races?

A staple in Suffolk's running calendar for several years, the Twilight road races see hundreds of athletes lace up their running shoes ready for 5k and 10k challenges across Ipswich.

The newly formatted Ipswich Twilight 5k race was brought in last year.

For the first time, the two main races were separated - with the 10km event taking place in August and the 5k in May.

Lily Trill with her 5k Daily Mile race medal at last year's event  Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWNLily Trill with her 5k Daily Mile race medal at last year's event Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

The 2019 events are no different, and this year's 5k will be based at Ipswich Waterfront.

There are a range of races taking place, including an elite 5km race which will host the national championships.

The winner of this course will be crowned the English champion - and Britain's top athletes are expected to descend on Ipswich to take on the challenge.

There will also be elite 800m races this year.

Familes running together in the Family Daily Mile.  Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWNFamiles running together in the Family Daily Mile. Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

When and where is the 5k race event taking place?

Sponsored by the Ipswich Building Society, the 5k races will take place at Ipswich Waterfront on Saturday, May 11.

Race HQ is at the University of Suffolk building, and the route is the same as it was in 2018.

Samboomba provided some entertainment at the 2018 Twilight 5k event  Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWNSamboomba provided some entertainment at the 2018 Twilight 5k event Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

Several 'waves' are taking place throughout the day, offering races for a range of different competitors, from schoolchildren to elite athletes.

What's the timetable on the day?

2pm - The Daily Mile race for primary schoolchildren in Suffolk, which are signed up for the challenge of the same name (which sees pupils walk or run a mile each day).

Winner of the elite 5K in 2018 and fastest in the UK, Nick Goolab Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWNWinner of the elite 5K in 2018 and fastest in the UK, Nick Goolab Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

In total, 74 schools are expected to take part, with 13,000 children eligible.

You may also want to watch:

2.30pm - The ABP sponsored 5k Business Challenge, made up of teams of three, comprising men and women.

3.30pm - The 30 minute and over 5k wave, which is full for 2019.

Runners braved the rain for the elite 5K in 2018  Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWNRunners braved the rain for the elite 5K in 2018 Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

5pm - The 800m ladies race, new for 2019. Mr Ashton said that for this race, they are claiming the winning time - or a 'world best'.

5.15pm - Men's 800m race, which already has European indoor silver medallist Jamie Webb signed up.

5.40pm - The 20-29 minutes 5k wave, which is also full.

6.20pm - The Suffolk County Council 'Most Active County' Family 2k wave, which is a chance for families to take part in exercise together.

7pm - The Sub 20 minute 'elite' race, which comprises the England Athletics Road Race Championship race. For this,

Who is taking part in the race? Will I recognise anyone?

The elite race has attracted athletes from all over the UK this year as it is hosting the national championships, Mr Ashton said.

"In addition to the 175 regular entrants, we have over 40 elite ladies likely to run under 17 minutes, and 50 men who plan to run under 15 minutes with some of the very best competitors looking to run under 14 minutes," he added.

"We already have last year's winner, Nick Goolab, signed up as well as local athlete Kieran Clements.

"In the ladies field, we have Laura Weightman, currently the fastest British lady over the distance running a time of 15:25 last year, closely followed by Jess Judd.

"Both have completed a number of times for Great Britain in various events.

He said: "It's by far the strongest and most in-depth field we've ever assembled."

Where should I stand to watch?

All of the race waves are taking place at Ipswich Waterfront.

Last year, the elite race started outside The Grazing Sheep, and the Daily Mile wave started from near Cult Cafe.

Spectators were able to line the course last year, with barriers put up to ensure participants aren't disrupted.

Maps will be available closer to the time via the Twilight Races website.

Can I still enter, and how do I sign up?

The entry date has now passed for the races.

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