Wrong-name Cambridge Half Marathon winner disqualified

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Media caption"At least I got a goody bag": Jack Gray talks to the BBC

A man who ran his first half marathon, and won, was disqualified for running under his boss's name, having taken his place three days earlier.

Jack Gray, 24, ran the Cambridge Half Marathon on Sunday when his boss Andrew Rawlings was injured.

He said he tried to contact the organisers and did not get a reply, but confessed after crossing the line in first place.

Sheffield student William Mycroft, who came second, was declared the winner.

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More than 7,000 runners took part in the event.

Mr Gray, who usually runs in 5km races, said: "My boss called on Thursday to ask if I wanted to take his place as he was injured, and I thought 'why not?'

Image copyright Ciprian Cucuruz
Image caption Jack Gray (circled in red), won the race but was disqualified, and Will Mycroft (in green) was declared the winner
Image copyright Jack Gray
Image caption Jack Gray said he knew of others who had swapped places, but thinks he was singled out because he won

"I thought it would be a shame for the place to go to waste and I made a donation to charity as I was now going to take part."

As he crossed the finish line in 66 minutes and 52 seconds, he heard the name "Andrew Rawlings" ringing out over the public address system.

"It dawned on me I might have a bit of explaining to do," he said.

"People were lining up to interview me, so I thought I'd better 'fess up straight away, and told the organisers I wasn't Andrew."

He was disqualified for running under the wrong name, but said he was "happy" when his Cambridge & Coleridge Athletic Club colleague was declared the winner with a time of 67 minutes and 11 seconds.

Mr Mycroft, who grew up in Cambridgeshire, referred to himself as "just the technical winner".

"It's a bit of a shame to win on a technicality, but I'm not going to complain."

The race organisers have been contacted for comment.

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