Olympic silver medallist Iwan Thomas has revealed he will be taking part in this year's Great North Run on September 16. Thomas, who still holds the British record over 400m, has urged runners of all abilities to take to the track and make the most of the sporting fever that will hit the UK in the lead up to London 2012.
Since its inception in 1981 when 5000 runners took part, the Great North Run has established itself as the world's most popular half-marathon. In what will be his first Great North Run, Thomas will be competing against 54,000 other participants.
Thomas, who will be running on behalf of Macmillan Cancer Support, commented: "Everyone says the Great North Run is just brilliant and I'm very excited to finally get to participate in it this year." He continued: "This is a massive sporting year for the country and whether you're taking on the Great North or competing in the Olympics, it's about making the most of your opportunity."
With the Great North Run set to take place merely a month after the Olympics finish, competitors will no doubt be looking to channel some of the motivation that stirs when watching athletes such as Mo Farah. Thomas added: "My message is go for it, don't hold anything back, don't think about the next time. This is your time, seize the moment."
Even though there are 50,000 plus places for this year's Bupa Great North Run, the level of demand means that it is still difficult to secure a position on the start line. The Daily Mirror is offering 3,000 guaranteed places through a ballot, which is now open and will run until midnight tonight (Friday, January 6). Each winning entrant will get a place in the Bupa Great North Run 2012 on September 16.
To enter the ballot, visit the Daily Mirror website.