ABP Southampton Half Marathon unites the city

April 26, 2015

 Image: Runners head through the start line at the first ever ABP Southampton Half Marathon and 10k

A new chapter in Southampton’s sporting history was written today (April 26) as tens of thousands of people came together for the first ever ABP Southampton Half Marathon and 10k.

The event, supported by ABP Port of Southampton, marked first time in 30 years that Southampton has played host to a half marathon and tens of thousands of people descended upon the city to cheer on the 6,000 runners.

An army of 500 local residents and community groups helped to marshal the event, with everyone from scouts and guides to charities and cheerleaders playing their part as ‘ABP Milemakers’.

Thousands of people came out from their homes to cheer runners on and in one street the congregations of four churches flooded out en masse to show their support.

It is estimated that around £100,000 has been raised for various charities through the event and organisers predict a boost to local businesses, which benefitted from the thousands of people who visited the city on the day.
Nick Ridehalgh, director of ABP Southampton, the headline sponsor of the event, said: “It's a genuine source of pride to everyone in the port that we have been able to play a part in delivering something that was such a great advert for our city and a marvellous occasion. As I went round the course I was so impressed with the level of support and the sheer enthusiasm from everyone. The port has been part of the city for 177 years or so and in that time has shared many memorable events, but none more uplifting than today.”

Among the iconic Southampton landmarks that the runners passed during the ABP Southampton Half Marathon were the Bargate monument, Itchen Bridge and St Mary’s Stadium.

The winner of the 10k was Scott Edgington, who came through the finish line in just 34 minutes. Matthew Bennett was the first to complete the half marathon course in a time of 1 hour and 14 minutes.

Chris Rees, race director, said: “The sense of excitement and community spirit was absolutely electrifying. People of all ages and abilities came together to make this event not just a run but something that brought the entire city together. Based on the success of today we’ll be looking to make the ABP Southampton Half Marathon a permanent fixture in Southampton’s sporting calendar and can’t wait to get planning for 2016.”

The race in numbers
• 6,000 runners took part
• 78,320 miles – the total distance covered by all runners in both races
• 18,000 bottles of water consumed by runners
• 2.01 million – the estimated total number of calories burnt by runners on the day
• 34 minutes- the fastest 10k time
• 1 hour 14 – the fastest half marathon time
• 89 – the oldest person to take part
• 15 – the youngest person to take part
• £100,000 – the amount raised for charities by runners
• Balzan in Malta – the furthest someone travelled to take part in the ABP Southampton Half Marathon
• 500 people volunteered as ABP Milemakers
• 9 months – the amount of time it took to sell out all the places in the event
• 47% of runners were first-timers for the ABP Southampton Half Marathon

For photographs and results visit www.abpsouthamptonhalf.co.uk or download the ABP Southampton Half Marathon app from the iStore.