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Wolverhampton Marathon 2006 start
And they're off..

Wolverhampton Marathon 2006

More than 2,500 entrants, an increase of some 700 on 12 months ago, took part in the 2006 Wolverhampton Marathon on Sunday September 3rd, 2006.

Wolves 2006 marathon warm up
Warming up for the main event

Organising committee chairman Ivan Savage, from sponsors Carvers, summed the mood up perfectly: "It just gets better and better each year - I'm thrilled to bits."

It was easy to see why those in charge were so satisfied as the total number of entrants - for the marathon, half-marathon, wheelchair, cycling and the new Run For The Children event - totalled in excess of 2,500, an increase of some 700 on 2005.

Shaun Milford, 2006 Wolves marathon winner
Winner Shaun Milford

After the ex-footballer Don Goodman had assisted BBC WM's Jenny Wilkes and Mike Taylor as runners warmed up, cyclists and disabled racers set off from Park Road West at 9.15 and 9.20am. By 9.30am the relay racers were heading for their changeovers and the full and half marathons had begun.

It was a breezy but dry day which proved successful for winner, Shaun Milford from Newquay, an experienced distance runner whose winning time was two hours 39 minutes and 45 seconds.

Runner in 2006 Wolverhampton marathon
Cool and collected

Second spot in the men's event went to Tipton's Paul Mountford who recorded a personal best time of two hours, 42 minutes and 55 seconds aswell as securing his best marathon placing to date.

Phil Hails, an engineer from Perton, also recorded a personal best time of two hours, 44 minutes, 36 seconds as he finished third.

Mayor with second placed Paul Mountford
Paul Mountford takes a bow

The women's event was won by Lisa Barry from Cambridge with Stoke on Trent's Debbie Thomas coming in third though 48 year old Jenny Moloney from the Royal Manor club, running her 50th marathon, was given a particularly warm cheer for earning second place.

Hundreds of spectators and supporters lined the streets of Wolverhampton and thronged around the finishing line in West Park.

Wolverhampton marathon 2006 entrant
Fun runner

The park itself hosted stalls and entertainment including a bouncy castle and a BBC WM stage.

Organising committee chairman, Ivan Savage, said the family-feel to the whole day had been vital in contributing to the increasing success of the event.

"The attraction is there's something for everybody - from serious athletes down to kids and even the cycling event, which is far from impossible for lots of people to take part in," he said.

Victoria Hill hands sweets out to runners
Marathon spirit: Victoria Hill

Spectators and supporters seemed to echo these sentiments. Victoria Hill encouraged runners by handing out sweets which she said her partner had suggested after recently completing another long distance race elsewhere.

"He said it was a great help as he got through the race - though I don't really know why, and I'm not sure he does either!" she said.

Don't forget to see the picture galleries above.

last updated: 04/09/06
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