3 Sep

Record Turnout For Great Scottish Run

Joseph Kirech

A 24,000 plus entry made the 2012 Bank of Scotland Great Scottish Run the biggest ever with participants enjoying favourable conditions - mid-temperatures and generally overcast conditions with a cooling breeze. Joseph Birech (1:03:15) brought home the field in the half marathon with Bezunesh Bekele fastest woman in 01:09:10. The 10k was won by Hunter Bog Trotter Murray Strain (30:57) with Elspeth Curran (32:49) first woman. Broadcaster Bryan Burnett provided the warm-up in George Square with words of advice and inspirational tracks while en route there was a series of entertainers - including steel bands and rock groups - who kept morale high and runners on track.

Kenyan Joseph Birech retained his half marathon title finishing ahead of Sohta Hoshi of Japan (1:03:50), with John Kelai third in 1:04:18. The women's half marathon saw Bezunesh Bekele take first place in 1:09:10, followed by Aya Nagata (1:12:03) and Grace Momanyi (1:12:42). The first wheelchair athlete to finish was Phil Hogg in 56:43. Ross Houston was the first Scot in the half in 1:06:28 with Hayley Haining (1:15:02) quickest Scot in the female field. The midpoint runner finished in 1 hour 59 minutes.

Murray Strain won the 10k race in 30:57 just ahead of Cambuslang Harrier Wegene Tafese (30:58) with last year's winner Luke Traynor third in (31:07). It was close in the women's race too with Kilbarchan's Elspeth Curran (35:02) finishing just 7 seconds ahead of veteran Fiona Matheson (35:09) to retain her 2011 title. The midpoint runner finished in 1 hour 1 minute.

A host of celebrities took part in both races with Tony Gately, brother of late Boyzone singer Stephen Gately, completing the 10k to raise awareness of the heart condition which claimed his brother's life. After the race he said: "It was an emotional experience for me. I knew Stephen was looking down on me and was with me every step of the way. I used to say to him when he got off stage that I was proud of him and that I loved him. If he had been there when I had crossed that line, I hope that is what he would have said to me."

Olympic athletes Lee McConnell, Eilidh Child, Euan Burton, Tim Baillie, Eve Muirhead and Lynn McCafferty congratulated runners at the finish line as part of the Bank of Scotland London 2012 Experience, which aimed to bring a flavour of the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games to the Great Scottish Run.

Another Olympic athlete, Eilish McColgan, helped encourage younger runners the previous day on Super Saturday, which included a junior 3k, family mile, elite mile and toddler dash. Eilish said: "I remember taking part in the Great Scottish Run when I was about 12, it was a great day, but this has been even better, it's been a huge success. My siblings would love everything that's happening in George Square today. If anyone at Glasgow Green, all those years ago, had told me I'd be at the Olympics I'd never have believed them, but if you give it a go you just never know what it could lead to."

A male runner taking part in the half marathon collapsed and was later confirmed to have died. Councillor Archie Graham, the Chair of Glasgow Life and Depute Leader of Glasgow City Council, said: "Our thoughts are with the family and friends of the man who died at this very sad time."

For a full list of results, visit our race listings page.